Mmegi Online :: BPC targets 20 mini power plants in villages
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Last Updated
Friday 16 November 2018, 13:42 pm.
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BPC targets 20 mini power plants in villages

The Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) has invited bids from independent power producers (IPPs) to set up 20 mini hybrid power stations in isolated villages as part of plans to boost electricity access.
By Staff Writer Fri 02 Jun 2017, 15:12 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: BPC targets 20 mini power plants in villages








In a tender published on their website, the power utility said government’s target of increasing electricity access to 80% by 2016 has not been met and the latest initiatives was part of measures to reach the goal.

To address the electricity access challenges and to meet the future electricity demand, BPC says in conjunction with the Ministry of Minerals, Energy Security and Green Technology it has embarked on a comprehensive electrical power system development strategy which includes amongst 96 rural villages, the development of mini-hybrid power plants in 20 isolated villages.

“The Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) would therefore like to engage companies or firms into a Joint Venture for the development, implementation and operation of a hybrid rural network. The mini grids will be located in Botswana, and the new formed Joint Venture will sell its power to BPC through a power purchasing agreement (PPA),” read the tender notice.

Hybrid power plants normally combine solar power from a photovoltaic system with another power generating energy source, usually diesel.

This project is expected to run for two years from appointment of the preferred IPPs joint venture partner.

The hybrid rural network projects aim to not only electrify isolated rural areas, but improve security and reliability of energy supply as well as increase share of new and renewable sources of energy in the energy supply mix of the country while offsetting the country’s carbon footprint. Meanwhile, the BPC has also issued an Expression of Interest (EOI) for the

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development of a 100MW solar power plant as the power utility sees power demand more than doubling in the next 18 years.

In a tender published on its website, BPC says it forecast power demand rising from the current 600MW to around 1,359 MW by 2035 and the new solar power plant will not only help improve energy security but also a diverse energy mix.

“The Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) would therefore like to 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,” reads the tender notice.

Botswana is facing power supply deficit owing to diminished surplus generation capacity in the region and the growing electrical energy requirements in the country. This has been compounded by the low availability from the Chinese built Morupule B power station, which has a capacity of 600MW but has available base generation capacity of an average 260MW.

  With the current peak demand standing at approximately 600MW, BPC says the supply gap is met through imports mainly from South Africa’s Eskom and some from Mozambique’s EDM.  BPC also utilises two emergency plants with a combined capacity of 195MW when the imports are not available or when they are too expensive.

BPC said shortlisted candidates to the EOI would be invited to tender for the required services by responding to a detailed Request for Proposal (RFP). Submission for the EOI close on June14, 2017.

 

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