19 February 2014: Solar Capital, a prominent solar energy producer in South Africa, has walked away with the prestigious Best Renewable Energy Company in Africa at the recently held ‘The New Economy Sustainable Energy Awards 2013. Other winners at the awards include Eskom as the Best Energy Group in Africa.
As the sustainable energy sector progresses into a period of encouraging growth, The New Economy Sustainable Energy Awards recognises the innovators and industry leaders who have bettered standards, performance and expectations around the world.
Albert Lennon, Chief Executive Officer of Solar Capital, says that the company is honoured that their hard work on the De Aar solar farm project has won this esteemed accolade. “In an effort to meet the major energy deficit the country currently faces, we have worked closely with the Department of Energy (DoE) on the first phase of the installation of a 200MW photovoltaic solar farm over two initial phases, with the capacity at the same location to increase to 400MW.”
This first phase of the Solar Capital De Aar project will generate enough electricity to power approximately 35 000 South African homes every year, with the intention of delivering the first 75MW of solar energy generated electricity into Eskom’s power grid. Our aim is to put South Africa on its way to achieving the production of 3,725MW of renewable energy envisaged for 2030 by the Independent Resources Procurement Programme.
As part of the company’s work within the De Aar community, they have made a commitment to create sustainable jobs, educate and equip the local community with skills. Approximately 10% of the income from the project will be invested in De Aar on local Social and Economic initiatives, which will amount to over R174 m in the first five years alone. Before the completion of the first phase, the company has already donated over R1 million to local initiatives to support the community.
“As the price of solar energy continues to drop, governments are fast realising that its benefits far outweigh traditional fossil fuel and nuclear energy sources. We are excited to be part of the shift towards renewable energies, and this award nomination is testament to our dedication and determination to provide a solar power solution to ensure the sustainability of the energy sector in South Africa,” says Lennon.
Solar Capital has also been nominated for the prestigious Solar Company of the Year in Africa at ‘The European Magazine’s 2014 Excellence Awards’, which will be held in May 2014.