SA coal miner mulls 155 MW wind farm

South African thermal coal miner Seriti Resources yesterday said it would build a 155 megawatt (MW) wind farm over the next two years in Mpumalanga, the first part of a planned 900 MW renewable energy cluster in the country’s coal heartland.

Seriti said it had signed a power purchase agreement with its renewable energy subsidiary, Seriti Green, for the supply of 155 MW of wind power to its coal mining operations.

The wind farm would cost R4 billion (US$235 million), Seriti said.

Privately owned Seriti, a major coal supplier to South Africa’s state power utility Eskom, announced the acquisition of Windlab Africa’s wind and solar energy assets last August, launching its foray into renewable energy.

Seriti Resources chief executive Mike Teke said the 155 MW wind farm, which is expected to feed power into the national grid by 2025, is the company’s first step towards becoming a diversified energy producer.

“We felt that it’s important that we take our responsibility and consider investing in renewable energy because we believe climate change is reality, we believe carbon neutrality is important and we have to make sure that we participate,” said Teke.

Seriti Green chief executive Peter Venn said the 155 MW wind farm would have the capacity to supply 75 percent of Seriti Resources’ power requirements at its coal mining operations.

Seriti’s coal-reliant peer Sasol announced on January 24 it had signed three 229 MW wind power purchase deals as it shifts towards renewable energy to meet its carbon emissions targets. — Reuters.

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