Nersa has agreed to put into effect Operation Vulindlela’s suggestion to drop power purchase agreements as one of the requirements for registering embedded generation projects below 100MW.
In a bid to be recognised as a global leader in energy regulation, NERSA (National Energy Regulator of South Africa) confirmed that it would also be focusing on automating the 100MW registration process for embedded energy projects as part of a broader strategy to automate its business processes. (Although these facilities do not need a licence, they must be registered.)
The first two projects making use of licence exemptions for generation facilities of up to 100MW have successfully been registered with Nersa. The two projects are developed and operated by Sola Group and will generate power for Tronox Mineral Sands’ operations located in the North West. The registration of the projects took 73 days from submission.
Power will be wheeled across Eskom’ s transmission grid to Sola’s operations on the West Coast and in KwaZulu-Natal. The projects have 28GWh of excess energy per year, which Sola is looking to market to other interested clients connected to Eskom’s grid.
The licence exemptions are expected to unlock investment in the energy sector to help address the generation capacity gap of between 4 000MW to 6 000MW. Implementing the Operation Vulindlela recommendation will help unlock the investment conduits of 50 projects with the combined energy potential of 4 500MW.
Operation Vulindlela is a joint initiative of the Presidency and National Treasury to accelerate the implementation of structural reforms and support economic recovery. Operation Vulindlela aims to modernise and transform network industries, including electricity, water, transport and digital communications.