South Africa – Two new South African wind farms, the 140MW Kangnas Wind Farm being developed in the Northern Cape Province and the 110MW Perdekraal East Wind Farm in the Western Cape Province have started to receive deliveries of their turbine tower sections.
The components which comprise of blades and nacelles among others are being transported from South Africa’s west coast port of Saldanha as well as from the town of Atlantis which has been designated as a special economic zone (SEZ) for green technologies.
Developers for the two big wind farms expect to have received all their turbine components before the end of January 2020.
“This is a considerable undertaking as we will have more than 1 000 abnormal loads traversing the country, between now and January next year,” explained Christo Loots, Construction Programme Manager for Kangnas Wind Farm and Perdekraal East Wind Farm.
The Kangnas and Perdekraal East wind farms are expected to be up and running by August 2020 and delivering a total of 932,3GWh/year of clean, renewable power into the grid, enough power needed per year by about 215 000. The two wind projects, which incorporate significant levels of locally manufactured components, will have substantial community investment over 20 years of operation.
To date South Africa has 33 wind farms with 3 672MW of installed capacity at various stages of development throughout the country.
Fully operational wind farms in the country have a total capacity of 2 020MW.
The wind industry in South Africa has invested R80.6bn in in the country and is helping to drive local manufacturing industries, which provide thousands of home-grown jobs.
Already one local manufacturer, GRI, based in SEZ in Atlantis is making the turbine tower sections for Kangnas and Perdekraal East wind farm.
The company which is 25% owned by local black shareholders, has about 250 employees who have benefited from skills transfer programs, some seeing training and experience abroad, and bringing their skills back to South Africa.
Green Cape, a non-profit organisation that seeks to promote widespread adoption of economically viable green economy solutions from the Western Cape, says the SEZ in Atlantis has already attracted R680m in green technology investments and has created over 300 jobs. It is expected that the zone will attract a further R3.7bn of investment by renewable energy and other manufacturers, and nearly 3,000 jobs are expected to be created by 2030 if these investments are realised.