International renewable energy consultancy, SgurrEnergy, part of Wood Group, has helped US solar energy developer, SolarReserve, secure $586m equity and debt financing for the construction of two large scale solar photovoltaic (PV) projects in South Africa, anticipated to commence this year.
SolarReserve, which is part of a consortium including The Kensani Group and Intikon Energy, appointed SgurrEnergy as technical advisor on the projects involving the Letsatsi and Lesedi PV plants which were consented through the South African Department of Energy’s (DOE) Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPP).
The REIPPP was set up to help deliver the country’s intention to generate 3725MW of its electricity needs from renewable sources by 2015.
SgurrEnergy provided a variety of technical advisory services to SolarReserve during the project’s development phase including solar resource assessment, outlining of plant designs, energy yield predictions, drafting of technical content relating to the project’s EPC and O&M contracts as well as appraisal of contractor proposals.
SgurrEnergy’s advisory work helped contribute to SolarReserve securing the vital funding they required to take the project to financial close that will allow construction to commence in 2013.
The Letsasi and Lesedi solar plants will be among the first large scale plants built in South Africa which is just beginning to take advantage of the country’s high level of renewable energy potential. Between them, these plants will generate enough clean energy to power more than 50,000 homes.
Keith Richardson, PV development director at SolarReserve, said; “We are delighted to have reached financial close at Lesedi and Letsatsi and put into construction this landmark project, SolarReserve’s first in South Africa. We are pleased to be working with technical advisors of SgurrEnergy’s calibre as we deliver on our corporate objective of constructing solar power plants of the highest technical, contractual and financial quality.”
Adam Spearey, project manager at SgurrEnergy, said; “It has been a pleasure working with SolarReserve on such a high profile project. At 75MW each, the Lesedi and Letsatsi plants will be amongst the largest renewable energy projects ever constructed in Africa. We congratulate SolarReserve in securing the consents and financing necessary to deliver these landmark projects and look forward to supporting their plans going forward.”