IMBERLEY, SOUTH AFRICA, July 16– South Africa’s Northern Cape is going green. The province is fast becoming the hub for renewable energy.
A leading international authority on utility-scale solar power places South Africa in tenth spot globally. Countries topping the list include the United States, China, Germany and Spain.
Ten of the 15 solar plants found in South Africa and connected to the national grid hail from Northern cape Province and they contribute 503 megawatts MW) of power to the grid.
Northern Cape Premier Sylvia Lucas said in an interview Tuesday: “The Northern Cape will be the hub of renewable energy in the country. Something that is very interesting, that is also happening in the province, is that people are prospecting for the possibility of shale gas in our province.
And, according to the Department of Energy, there is also a possibility of a nuclear energy plant being constructed in the province.”
At least 28 solar plants are currently being constructed in the province. The projects have already created 6,500 jobs with many of the workers engaged in the projects having gained valuable skills.
One of the workers, Ditiro Mogoje, said: “We are still waiting for the maintenance company to come so that the plant can be maintained. We heard that the plant will be operational for 20 years.”
Renewable energy projects in the province will include hydro, wind, solar and nuclear power plants in the near future.