A consortium led by ACWA Power of Saudi Arabia and Solar Reserve of the US has been awarded the right to develop the $1.2bn Redstone Project, a 100MW concentrated solar power project using central tower technology at the Northern Cape Province, South Africa.

The project makes up part of South Africa’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer (REIPP) procurement programme, which is targeting a total generation of 3,725MW from renewable sources — broadly in line with South Africa’s renewable energy goal for 2030.

“The Redstone Project is another successful bid where we delivered the lowest tariff to date in the REIPPP programme for electricity generated wholly with solar power, but reliably deployable both day and night,” said Paddy Padmanathan, CEO and president of ACWA.

He noted the project will demonstrate ACWA’s reliable delivery at the lowest possible cost.

The project will generate electricity day and night to power approximately 210,000 homes, ensuring stable supply by storing the heat of the sun in a molten salt solution in its central concentrated solar tower for use on-demand to operate a steam turbine and generator.

“We have also structured all aspects of the project, from development to construction and operations, to ensure the maximum value retention, both for the country’s economy, and also for the local economy of the Northern Cape,” added Padmanathan.

Around 800 jobs will be created during the peak construction phase of the project, which will also maintain 70 jobs during operations. The project will have a significant impact on the entire local community, with the construction expected to require $242m in local content.

Over the course of its 20-year operational life, the project is also committed to contributing $43m on socio-economic and enterprise development initiatives, while the generation of the 100MW output by solar means will offset approximately 500,000 tons of carbon dioxide.

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