BOTSWANA – Norwegian independent power producer (IPP) Scatec has signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) with Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) for the construction of a 50 MWp solar photovoltaic plant.

Scatec intends to install the solar park in Selebi-Phikwe, a mining town located 402 km from the capital of Botsawna, Gaborone.

Under the PPA, Scatec will sell the electricity generated to BPC for 25 years.

“We are proud to have reached this milestone with BPC, which demonstrates our ability to support and deliver clean energy and infrastructure to sub-Saharan Africa. It is also an important achievement for the people of Botswana,” said Jan Fourie, Scatec’s director for sub-Saharan Africa.

Scatec is the sole shareholder in the project and will also be the appointed engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) company, asset manager and O&M contractor.

IPP estimates that its future solar PV plant will be capable of powering 20,000 Botswana homes while offsetting the emissions of 48,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalent per year.

The approval of this project demonstrates the Botswana government’s commitment to accelerate the deployment of clean energy to increase its installed capacity, despite the fact that the country has 66% of Africa’s coal resources.

With an installed capacity of 450 MW, Botswana imports an additional 150 MW from South Africa. Power Africa estimates national demand at 550 MW.

In order to increase its installed capacity and gain autonomy from its neighbour South Africa, the Botswana authorities have launched a call for tenders for the construction of six solar photovoltaic power plants in early 2022.

In the wake of this, the country wants to attract investment in thermodynamic solar energy production through another tender launched in February 2022.

Gaborone wants to build a concentrating solar power (CSP) plant in Maun, a town at the entrance to the Okavango Delta in the North West District, and another in Letlhakane in the Central District. Both facilities will have a combined capacity of 200 MW.

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