Nhlawulo Chauke
2 minute read
24 Mar 2017
6:31 am

Tshwane to ‘buy back’ electricity with new solar power programme

Nhlawulo Chauke

The Embedded Power Generation essentially allows small power generation by residents or small businesses for their own use.

Solar Power. Image courtesy: stock.xchng

The City of Tshwane announced its flagship policy on Embedded Power Generation (EPG), which is aimed to promote small-scale solar power generation by residents.

Speaking at a media briefing on Thursday, executive mayor Solly Msimanga said this is an opportunity for residents to sell their excess power to the city.

EPG is essentially allowing small power generation by residents or small businesses for their own use.

“Residents can generate solar power from a roof-top panel during the day, and sell their excess to the city. At night, when the resident cannot generate solar power, they can purchase from the city,” said Msimanga.

“This is a major step in the renewable power policy and our first step in a real green power development.”

Echoing the mayor’s sentiments, member of the mayoral committee for infrastructure Darryn Moss said the spare electricity generated can be used to make up during instances where the city has a shortfall.

“This innovation mitigates both the economic impact and inconvenience of load-shedding and saves on the cost of buying electricity at peak rates,” Moss said.

Globally, feed-in tariffs have had the biggest impact on the boom in renewable energy.

“Figures provided by the trustworthy Power Quality and Renewable Services indicate that over the course of 2016, it is estimated that 120Mw of actual module sales took place.

“Roughly 118Mw of the total installed capacity has been audited and, due to the volume of data, is assumed to be representative of the growth of PV installations in South Africa over a period of time.

“Strategic decisions have been taken to enhance demand side management through energy-efficiency initiatives, improved metering of electricity and reduced losses from the transmission and distribution of electricity and fuels,” Msimanga said.

The mayor said the production of solar energy within the city is “up there with the best in the country”.

He concluded by saying, together with the EPG, they will ensure the city leads by example by producing energy efficiency plans for households, official buildings and public spaces.

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