Old Mutual affirms commitment to  renewable energy investments Mr Matsekete

Business Reporter

Diversified financial services group Old Mutual Zimbabwe says its solar and hydro energy projects, once complete, will generate over 42 megawatts to be fed into the national grid, which presently falls short of total demand.

The group has invested in the development of renewable energy projects, some of which have been completed and are feeding into the national grid, while the others are at different stages of implementation.

Group chief executive Samuel Matsekete said at a recent group event that, in line with Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7 (affordable and clean energy) and SDG 13 (climate action), the group’s investments and commitment to green energy were exemplified in the resources it has channeled into solar and hydro energy projects.

These projects include the Great Zimbabwe Hydro, Kupinga Renewable Energy, Solgas, Richaw, Centragrid, and a number of others that are coming up and being worked on.

“Once completed, the projects will generate over 42MW of energy for the grid, and that will be enough to power 40 000 households; they will have created over 370 jobs,” he said.

Old Mutual Zimbabwe, in its quarterly update for the period to September 2023, said it deployed US$13,7 million into alternative investments in renewable energy and other key sectors of the economy.

The group has previously committed to continuing to invest in more solar energy projects in order to bridge the gap in the country’s energy supply.

In 2021, the financial services group and its partner SolGas commissioned the US$7,3 million SolGas Energy 5 MW solar plant at Cross Mabale in Hwange district.

The Great Zimbabwe hydropower project is a 5MW run-of-river hydro project utilizing the hydropower potential of the river Mutirikwi in Masvingo.

In 2015, Old Mutual teamed up with Kupinga Renewable Energy for the Kupinga hydropower plant, which has a capacity of 1,6 MW.

However, according to the Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (ZERA), a total of 14 independent power producers with a capacity of 95,99 MW are currently contributing to the country’s national grid, along with several other projects at different levels of implementation as the country moves towards achieving energy efficiency.

According to ZERA, renewable energy technologies now dominate the licensed power projects in line with the country’s quest for cleaner and more sustainable power supplies by the year 2025.

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