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The National Energy Regulator of South Africa has given state company Eskom a licence to go ahead with its Sere wind farm near Koekenaap in the Western Cape.
'Sere is our first large-scale renewable energy project,' Eskom chief executive officer Brian Dames said in a statement on Monday. 'It demonstrates our commitment to reducing our carbon footprint and to investing in a sustainable energy future.'
The project will cost R2.4-billion and is expected to be in full commercial operation by the end of 2014. It is expected to create about 170 direct jobs during construction.
Taking its name from the Nama word for 'cool breeze', the Sere wind farm will generate up to 100 megawatts (MW) of power for the national grid and will lead to the saving of approximately 4.7-million tonnes of carbon emissions over 20 years.
It has been funded by a group of development finance organisations, including the World Bank, African Development Bank, Clean Technology Fund and Agence Francaise de Developpement.
'We are very pleased that we have been able to take advantage of attractive financing from international development finance institutions to construct the project at costs which compare favourably with the market,' Dames said.
Forty-six Siemens 2.3-108 wind turbine generators will make up the Sere farm, as well as construction of a new substation and 132-kilovolt (kV) distribution line.
It has an expected operating life of 20 years, with average annual energy production of about 233 00-megawatt hours (MWh), enough clean energy to power about 97 000 homes.
News date: 21/05/2013