June 7 (Renewables Now) - South Africa’s Harmony Gold Mining Co Ltd (JSE:HAR) has secured debt funding to launch the construction of three solar plants totalling 30 MW to power its mining operations.
The three projects, each with a capacity of 10 MW, are part of a wider plan that also envisions the construction of an additional 137 MW of renewable power plants at Harmony’s longer-life mines. The construction of the three solar parks is the first phase of the gold miner’s renewable energy programme, it said last week.
To be built in South Africa’s Free State province, the photovoltaic (PV) plants are expected to produce more than 68 GWh of electricity for the local operations of Harmony. The mining group will get their output under a power purchase agreement.
The three projects were jointly developed by Harmony, South African engineering firm BBEnergy and clean energy project investor Energy Group. The plants are due to be commissioned in March 2023.
To back the implementation of the projects, Harmony has secured a debt facility from Rand Merchant Bank, a division of FirstRand Bank. Equity was provided by Mahlako Energy Fund and private equity fund manager African Infrastructure Investment Managers (AIIM), which separately said it has bought majority stakes in the three projects.
Veselina Petrova is one of Renewables Now's most experienced green energy writers. For several years she has been keeping track of game-changing events both large and small projects and across the globe.