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Mining Sector Benefits From Change in Legislation: Juwi Continues to Drive Renewable Energies in South Africa

Wörrstadt - Asset manager African Infrastructure Investment Managers (AIIM) has signed a contract with South African mining group Sibanye-Stillwater to supply electricity from the "Castle Wind" wind farm to mines operated by Sibanye Stillwater in the country.

The contract is conditional on a change in the legal regulations governing the energy market in South Africa. Originally, the wind farm was developed by project developer Juwi with a capacity of 89 megawatts (MW) for the South African government’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producers’ Programme (REI4P). Juwi meanwhile has sold the project rights to the AIIM consortium, which brought the wind farm online together with its investment partner Reatile.

However, the current changes in the law now make it possible to move projects like the Castle Wind project, which were originally developed for the REI4P, to the private sector. "This is because it is now finally possible to transport large amounts of electricity through the public power grid from the generator over long distances to the consumer. This enables mining companies to supply themselves with cheap and clean energy from wind and solar farms across the country via direct power supply contracts, improving their own profitability," said Juwi South Africa Managing Director Richard Doyle. Until now, the legal framework did not provide for this.

"We are currently experiencing a veritable flood of inquiries for renewable energy projects from South African mining companies," Doyle added. These are being driven by the energy crisis in the country, the favorable cost of electricity from renewables and the decarbonization targets of the major mining companies.

Juwi Renewable Energies Pty. Ltd, the South African subsidiary of international project developer Juwi, currently has 400 MW of EPC projects in the pipeline for the mining sector in South Africa. The projects serve to supply energy-intensive mining companies and are in various project phases. They include another multi-MW wind farm that the company is currently implementing. Juwi also recently signed an EPC contract with mining company Pan African Resources to build an 8.75 MW solar farm for its Fairview mine near the town of Barberton in Mpumalanga province. Before the end of this year, the Juwi South Africa subsidiary plans to launch projects with a capacity of around one gigawatt on the African continent, according to the company.

Source: IWR Online, Jun 06 2023