Botswana Power Corporation Wants Partners For 100MW Solar Project

State-owned Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) has issued an Expression of Interest (EOI) to the market in a bid to seek partners with companies for the development, implementation and operation of a 100 MW Solar Power Plant with suitable storage capacity.

Solar is alternative energy in Africa (Pic By Cronimet)

According to the power utility, the plant will be located in Botswana, and the new formed Joint Venture will sell its power to BPC through a Power Purchasing Agreement (PPA).

“…..To address the power supply challenges and to meet the future electricity demand, the Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) in conjunction with the Ministry Of Minerals, Green Technology and Energy Security (MMGE) has embarked on a comprehensive electrical power system development strategy which includes among others, the development of a 100MW solar power plant two years from appointment of the preferred Independent Power Producer (IPP) joint venture partner,” BPC said in a tender notice.

“The additional power generation will be from a new solar power plant constructed, commissioned, owned and operated, by the IPP joint venture company. This initiative is in line with National Energy Policy goal of providing affordable, reliable and adequate supply of energy for sustainable development, as well as improving access to and efficient use of energy resources.”

BPC said the objectives of the 100MW Solar Power plant project are to improve security and reliability of energy supply, increase share of new and renewable sources of energy in the energy supply mix of the country and Offset the country’s carbon footprint.

The EOI comes at a time when Botswana is facing a huge power supply deficit owing to diminished surplus generation capacity in the region and the growing electrical energy requirements in Botswana.  This has been compounded by the low availability of Morupule B power station.

The base generation plants currently consist of Morupule “A” with an installed capacity of 132MW and Morupule “B” with 600MW. The available base generation capacity averages 260MW only from Morupule B power station since the Morupule “A” plant is undergoing refurbishment. The current peak demand stands at approximately 600MW and the supply gap is met through imports mainly from South Africa (Eskom) and some from Mozambique (EDM).

The two emergency plants, Orapa 90MW and Matshelagabedi 105MW are also dispatched when the imports are not available or when they are too expensive. According to the twenty year national electricity demand forecast (2015 to 2035), it is predicted that the electricity demand will grow from a diversified base of approximately 606 MW in 2015 to an expected High Scenario of approximately 1, 523 MW in 2035.

The Low Scenario will reach approximately 1184 MW ​and the most likely Scenario is expected to grow to an estimated value of 1,359 MW in 2035. This is based on the average growth rate per annum for the low, likely and high scenarios of 8%, 10% and 11% respectively.

BPC would engage companies or firms into a Joint Venture for the development, implementation and operation of a 100 MW Solar Power Plant with suitable storage capacity. The plant will be located in Botswana, and the new formed Joint Venture will sell its power to BPC through a Power Purchasing Agreement (PPA).

The EOI is invited from power generation companies /Independent Power Producers (IPPs) /power plant developers / Captive Power Producers for developing a solar power plant in a joint venture with BPC.

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