South Africa launches bid window 7 for renewable energy projects

South Africa launches bid window 7 for renewable energy projects

South Africa launches bid window 7 for renewable energy projects

The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) has launched BW7 of the REIPPPP. The goal is to procure 5 GW of renewable energy capacity, comprising 3.2 GW onshore wind and 1.8 GW solar PV. All selected projects must be grid-connected by 2025.

The projects should be located in areas with available supply according to the Generation Connection Capacity Assessment (GCCA) of the 2025 Transmission Network. The GCCA 2025 indicates 19.94 GW of available capacity in certain regions, including KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, North West, and the Free State.

Regions with high potential for wind and solar PV generation, such as the Northern Cape, Eastern Cape, Western Cape, and Hydra Central, have exhausted capacity from previous bid window rounds. Significant transmission network investment is required to unlock capacity in these areas.

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Third Ministerial Determination

Curtailment studies were conducted to provide alternative options for developers keen on connecting in constrained areas. Developers are encouraged to consider areas with remaining capacity. Unlocking capacity in high-demand regions requires substantial investment in the transmission network, which may take several years to develop and construct.

The 5 GW in BW7 is released in line with the Third Ministerial Determination, allowing the procurement of 14.771 GW of new wind, solar, and battery energy storage capacity. Wind energy receives the largest share of 9.6 GW, with the remainder from a battery energy storage system (BESS).

The South African cabinet approved the draft Integrated Resource Plan 2023, providing an energy roadmap until 2050. The plan will undergo public consultation before coming into effect. Bidding documents have been made available for download and the submission deadline for bids is April 30, 2024. A project registration process needs to be completed close to 20 business days before the bid submission date.