The Korea Herald


Mainstream Renewable Power projects to deliver 1.27 GW of new wind and solar for South Africa


Published : Oct. 29, 2021 - 16:50

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  • Mainstream Renewable Power-led consortium has been awarded 50% of the total allocation in the latest round of South Africa's Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP)
  • The win makes Mainstream Renewable Power the leading renewable energy company in South Africa, with over 2.1 GW awarded under the REIPPPP to date
  • The twelve projects, across onshore wind and solar, will generate enough clean energy to power a third of the annual electricity demand of the City of Cape Town

DUBLIN and CAPE TOWN, South Africa, Oct. 29, 2021 /PRNewswire/ --Global wind and solar company, Mainstream Renewable Power ("Mainstream"), today announces that twelve of its projects have won preferred bidder status in Round 5 of South Africa's Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP). The wind and solar projects, which have a total capacity of 1.27 GW, represent half of the total allocation in the Round, which was the most competitive to date, being almost 4 times oversubscribed.

The win makes Mainstream the most successful company in the history of the South African renewable energy procurement programme, with over 2.1 GW awarded to date. This includes 850 MW of wind and solar generation assets that Mainstream has already delivered into commercial operation across Rounds 1, 3 and 4 of the REIPPPP. Mainstream has achieved a number of firsts in the REIPPP including constructing South Africa's first self-build substation as well as bringing the first projects to financial close and to complete construction in Rounds 1, 3 and 4.  

The Mainstream-led consortium, named "Ikamva" which means "the future" in Xhosa, will deliver six onshore wind projects and six solar PV projects, including the first REIPPPP project in South Africa's KwaZulu-Natal province. The consortium brings together a range of expertise, led by Mainstream's 100% African team of over a hundred professionals, and comprises Globeleq, Africa Rainbow Energy & Power, H1 Holdings and local community trusts.

As a result of this award Mainstream will double the size of its South African team and will be actively recruiting another 100 South Africans to support the engineering and construction of the 12 projects. This will make Mainstream the largest pure-play renewables employer in Africa.

The projects will produce approximately 4,500 Gigawatt hours (GWh) of green electricity each year, helping to avoid nearly 5 million tonnes of CO2 per annum, once fully operational. They will provide South Africa with critical, low-cost, indigenous power and help deliver a just transition towards its clean energy and climate goals.

The win underpins Mainstream's strategy of building true scale across its global platforms, with the company's global portfolio now at 16.2 GW. It is the latest demonstration of Mainstream's accelerated growth trajectory following the 75% acquisition by Aker Horizons earlier in 2021, as well as the announcement of the new 1 GW Nazca Renovables platform in Chile in July.

Hein Reyneke, Mainstream's General Manager for Africa said: 

"We are delighted to be chosen to contribute further to the decarbonisation of South Africa. It is a demonstration of faith in Mainstream's track record of efficient and reliable delivery not only here in South Africa but also internationally, where we are currently building ten wind and solar PV projects simultaneously, totalling 1.35 GW in Chile. Our latest win will deliver enormous social, economic and environmental benefits for South Africa."

Emmet Curley, Head of Communications & Positioning  
Phone: +353 86 2411 690  

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Project information: 

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Mainstream owns 100% of the projects awarded. At financial close, ownership will transfer to the equity consortium: Mainstream (25%), Globeleq (26%), Africa Rainbow Energy & Power (23.25%), H1 Holdings (23.25%) and Community Trusts (2.5%).

About Mainstream Renewable Power 

 Mainstream Renewable Power is a leading pure-play renewable energy company with a global footprint. The company is focused on expanding its high-quality pipeline of more than 16.2 Gigawatts (GW) of wind and solar assets across Latin America, Africa, Asia Pacific as well as the global offshore wind sector. In May 2021, it closed an agreement for Aker Horizons to take a 75% equity stake in the company, enabling Mainstream to accelerate its global expansion plan.  

 Mainstream has delivered more than 6.5 GW of wind and solar assets to financial close-ready, and currently has over 1.4 GW (net) in construction across Latin America and Africa. In Chile, Mainstream's wholly-owned 1.35 GW "Andes Renovables Platform" of fully contracted wind and solar assets are on track to complete construction from later this year. In Africa, the company has delivered 850 MW of wind and solar assets into commercial operation in South Africa, and further, through its Lekela Power joint venture has 410 MW of wind assets in construction in Senegal and Egypt.  

 Mainstream is one of the most successful pure-play developers of offshore wind at scale globally. It has successfully consented Hornsea One (1.2 GW), the largest operational offshore wind plant in the world today; and developed the Hornsea 2 project (1.4 GW) before selling these projects and the entire Zone in 2015. Overall, it has developed and consented 20% of the UK's offshore wind capacity either in operation or under construction.  Mainstream fully consented the Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind project in Scotland, 450 MW, currently under construction.  The company's Soc Trang 1.4 GW offshore wind development in Vietnam is one of Southeast Asia's largest renewable energy developments.  

 Mainstream has raised more than EUR3.0bn in project finance to date and employs more than 420 staff across five continents.