New renewable energy deal to create over 50,000 jobs

Energy Minister Jeff Radebe has signed off on a deal which will see 27 new independent power producers connect to the country's power system.

FILE: Energy Minister Jeff Radebe. Picture: Lindsay Dentlinger/EWN

CAPE TOWN – Energy Minister Jeff Radebe has signed off on a deal which will see 27 new independent power producers connect to the country's power system.

Totalling R56 billion, the projects will also create 58,000 new jobs.

The long-delayed projects will tap 2,300 megawatts into the country's power grid.

Radebe has conceded that the delay in signing the deals has had a negative impact on both the renewable energy sector, as well as on investor confidence.

The projects include 15 new wind and solar plants to be built in the Northern Cape, while four new wind projects will be rolled out in the Eastern Cape.

Chairman of Sola Future Energy, Chris Haw, says that the initiatives will reduce the cost of electricity.

“The signing shows that the government is committed to the country’s economic developments. Renewables are cheaper and more sustainable forms of energy.”

Two more wind farm projects will be built in the Western Cape and a hydro project will be constructed in the Free State.