City of Cape Town wins Atlantis Solar PV tender, construction begins in August 2024   

Cape Town: The City of Cape Town has been awarded with a tender of Atlantis solar photovoltaic (PV) plant. The construction of the project will begin in August 2024, as planned and will be completed with the coming 12 months.

Reportedly, city’s first grid-connected 7MW solar plant, is one of its interventions to end the load, shedding over the time. The idea is to potentially consider the numbers of similar plants being rolled out across the metro in the near future.

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The city has awarded the tender to the Lesedi Technoserve Consortium for engineering, procurement and construction of the plant.

Member of the Mayoral Committee for Energy Councillor – Beverley van Reenen said that this is a great milestone that we have reached and Cape Town is again leading the pack.

Currently, the project is in the detailed phase of designing. The transmission of the first power into the grid is expected near the end of the year 2025.

As per the Councillor, the plant will be connected to the electrical network of the city at a nearby main substation and will feed the 7MW of generated electricity directly into the grid.

City of Cape Town officials initiating the Atlantis solar PV tender
City of Cape Town officials initiating the Atlantis solar PV tender

“The solar plant is the first utility-scale renewable energy project in Cape Town. This will be owned and operated by the City,” said Reenen.

MCM for Energy Beverly van Reenen confirmed, “Apart from achieving the overarching vision of reducing the dependency on Eskom through the various programmes and enabling cleaner, more affordable sources of energy, we are also extremely focused on boosting the local economy to drive job creation.”

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According to Reenen, the Atlantis project provides significant benefits for the economy and job creation. The project will thus increase green jobs across various skill levels.

Moreover, a full stakeholder engagement process will get under way and we thank the community, partners and stakeholders for all their support.

Atlantis PV Project is an initiative, which the city is undertaking to achieve the Energy Strategy 2050, with a vision of ‘Energy security for a prosperous Cape Town’.

The project supports the commitments of the strategy to harness the new energy supply and to operate a future-fit utility, to optimise the energy use.

Notably, Cape Town has currently purchased most of its electricity from Eskom, with the high Eskom-price escalations that are expected in the future. The purchases might not be financially sustainable and going forward.

The Atlantis Solar PV plant will be one of many interventions that will help in generating the affordable and reliable electricity by ensuring that the cost of generation is lower than the price offered by the Eskom.

The project is dedicated to achieve the city’s goal of net-zero carbon municipal buildings by 2030. The renewable energy has generated from the Atlantis Solar PV project will offset the electricity consumption in municipal buildings and thereby is reducing the carbon emissions that are associated with the operations of the city.