Construction of 140 MW Eastern Cape wind farm, the Nxuba wind farm in the Amatole district of South Africa has commenced.
Italy’s Enel, who was awarded the project contract through its renewable subsidiary Enel Green Power RSA, said the Nxuba project, which is slated to enter into operation by September 2020, is expected to generate over 460 GWh annually and will be the Group’s third wind farm in the Eastern Cape province·
Antonio Cammisecra, Head of Enel Green Power, the Global Renewable Energy business line of the Enel Group said that the company will invest US $226m in the construction of the project as part of the 700 MW of wind capacity awarded to the company in April 2015 following the South African government’s renewable tender.
“Through the start of construction of the Nxuba wind farm, which is the first out of the five projects awarded to the company in South Africa’s 2015 renewable tender to begin construction, Enel confirms its commitment to grow and strengthen its presence in the country,” said Antonio
Diversifying South Africa’s generation mix
Antonia further added that the new project reaffirms EGP RSA’s contribution to further diversify South Africa’s generation mix, while supplying sustainable energy to Eskom, and promoting the socio-economic growth of local communities.
Once fully up and running, Nxuba is expected to generate over 460 GWh per year, avoiding the emission of around 500,000 tons of CO2 into the atmosphere each year. It will be supported by a 20-year power supply agreement with the South African energy utility Eskom, as part of the South African government’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP).
EGP RSA will employ innovative tools and practices to build Nxuba such as advanced digital platforms and software solutions to monitor and remotely support site activities and plant commissioning, digital tools to perform quality controls on site and smart tracking of wind turbine components. These processes and tools will enable swifter, more accurate and reliable data collection, improving the quality of construction and facilitating communication between on-site and off-site teams.
Socio-economic and enterprise development
In addition, the company, with its local partners, has committed to ensure meaningful socio-economic and enterprise development, preferential procurement, and job creation in the surrounding communities, involving local businesses as suppliers, providing free WiFi to communities in the area and holding wind technology training courses for locals.
Enel Green Power is the Enel Group’s global business line dedicated to the development and operation of renewables across the world, with a presence in Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa and Oceania. Enel Green Power is a global leader in the green energy sector with a managed capacity of about 43 GW across a generation mix that includes wind, solar, geothermal and hydropower, and is at the forefront of integrating innovative technologies into renewable power plants.