South Africa Launches REIPPPP Bid Window 7

Wind Gets Bigger Chunk Of DMRE’s New 5 GW Auction Round With Solar Securing 1.5 GW Capacity

South Africa Launches REIPPPP Bid Window 7

According to GCCA 2025 prepared by Eskom, a total of 19.94 GW grid-connection capacity is available in select regions for new projects to be selected under REIPPPP bid window 7. (Photo Credit: Eskom)

  • South Africa’s DMRE has officially launched the REIPPPP bid window 7 with a 5 GW procurement call 
  • Onshore wind gets the larger share of the lot with 3.2 GW capacity, while 1.8 GW solar PV is available under the call 
  • Winning projects need to come online by 2025 in regions with grid availability, a report of which Eskom has prepared 
  • Generation capacity of 19.94 GW is currently available in select regions for winning projects under bid window 7 

The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) has launched bid window 7 (BW7) of the country’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producers Programme (REIPPPP) in South Africa. 

Under this round, it seeks to procure 5 GW of renewable energy capacity, comprising 3.2 GW onshore wind and 1.8 GW solar PV. All of the selected projects need to be grid-connected by 2025. 

The request for qualification and proposals (RFP) is for projects that will be located in available areas of supply on the Generation Connection Capacity Assessment (GCCA) of the 2025 Transmission Network. The GCCA 2025 provides details of the generation connection capacity of the planned transmission network with all the projects that will be commissioned by 2025. It is available on Eskom’s website. 

As per the GCCA 2025, the country currently has 19.94 GW of available capacity in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, North West and the Free State. 

On the other hand, the most favorable areas for wind and solar PV generation capacity in the country, namely the Northern Cape, Eastern Cape, Western Cape and Hydra Central, have all exhausted capacity from previous bid window rounds and private off-takers. Several projects in these regions have been denied connection due to the lack of connection capacity. 

Yet, the authorities say these areas are in high demand due to their abundant energy resources for renewable generation. Unlocking capacity in these areas will require a significant amount of transmission network investment, which often takes several years to develop and construct. 

“Curtailment studies were, therefore, conducted to provide generations developers with an alternative option if they were still keen to connect in these constrained areas,” states Eskom. “Generation developers are, therefore, strongly encouraged to consider developing their projects in those areas with remaining capacity.” 

This 5 GW is the 1st to be released in line with the Third Ministerial Determination under which the government has cleared the way to procure 14.771 GW of new wind, solar and battery energy storage capacity (see South Africa To Launch Tenders For Around 15 GW RE Capacity). 

Wind energy gets the largest chunk of 9.6 GW with the remaining capacity to come from 1.231 GW battery energy storage system (BESS).  

Bidding documents are available for download starting from December 14, 2023, with the submission deadline being April 30, 2024, according to the call. This should follow the project registration process that needs to complete close to 20 business days before the bid submission date.  

Under BW6, solar was the sole winner of all of 860 MW awarded, even though the authorities increased the share of onshore wind from 1.6 GW to 3.2 GW, while for solar the available capacity was 1 GW (see South Africa: Disappointing 6th RE Round For Onshore Wind). 

Recently, the South African cabinet approved the publication of the country’s draft Integrated Resource Plan 2023 that provides an energy roadmap till 2050. It will be made available for public consultation before coming into effect (see South Africa Approves Integrated Resource Plan 2023). 

About The Author

Anu Bhambhani

Senior News Editor: Anu Bhambhani is the Senior News Editor of TaiyangNews. --Email : [email protected] --

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