Voltalia wins 148-MW solar PPA for Rio Tinto's mineral sand ops in S Africa
The Castellet solar park. Photo by: Voltalia (www.voltalia.com).
October 6 (Renewables Now) - Richards Bay Minerals, a unit of Anglo-Australian mining giant Rio Tinto Plc (LON:RIO, ASX:RIO), will be the power off-taker of a 148-MW solar plant that France’s Voltalia SA (EPA:VLTSA) will build in South Africa’s Limpopo province.
The corporate power purchase agreement (PPA) will enable the mineral sands producer to source around 300 GWh of power annually through a wheeling arrangement for its smelting and processing facilities in KwaZulu-Natal. The contract was signed for 20 years, Voltalia said on Thursday.
The French renewable power producer will supply the contracted power volumes from its Bolobedu photovoltaic (PV) farm, which is slated to go live in 2024. The new plant is expected to be capable of producing electricity for over 425,000 local residents per year.
With the power deliveries, Richards Bay Minerals will offset 237,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions annually from its operations, thus lowering its Scope 1 and 2 emissions by at least 10% per year.
The Bolobedu project will create the largest renewable energy site dedicated to a corporate client in South Africa, Voltalia noted, adding that this will be its largest development in the country.
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.