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Largest standalone battery energy storage system in Africa receives go-ahead

Electricity storage will be pivotal in unlocking renewable projects and meeting energy demand. (Image source: Adobe Stock)

Globeleq, an independent power company in Africa, has revealed that its South Africa Red Sands project has been awarded preferred bidder status

The 153MW / 612MWh project, located in the Northern Cape, will become the largest standalone battery energy storage system (BESS) in Africa. After receiving preferred bidder status in South Africa’s Energy Storage Capacity Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (ESIPPPP), eyes are now looking ahead to the beginning of construction, expected to start later this year after financial close.

Mike Scholey, Globeleq’s CEO, remarked, “I am delighted that we have received preferred bidder status for this very important project: the biggest standalone battery energy storage system project in Africa. We look forward to working with the Government to take Red Sands to financial close and into operations.”

It is anticipated that the project will cost approximately US$300mn, and will take around 24 months to deliver after construction start. Originally developed by African Green Ventures, Globeleq has stated that it will work closely with leading global battery and balance-of-plant suppliers to deliver the project that will take up approximately 5 ha and connect to the grid through the Eskom Garona substation (which will also undergo upgrades).

Storage key to meeting African energy demand

The Globeleq group owns and operates eight renewable plants in South Africa, making up a total generating capacity of 384MW. With this extensive experience under its belt, they are now looking to undertake the significant Red Sands project that will be its first largescale BESS project in the country (although it is also developing other BESS projects across the continent).

Scholey concluded, “Electricity storage is going to be key not only in helping South Africa meet its considerable industrial and domestic demand for energy but also in meeting growing demand right across Africa as more and more renewable energy projects benefit from the advances our industry has made with battery storage technology.”

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