The developers of the Redstone Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) project in South Africa have made the first loan repayment after borrowing $770 million from various development banks and private investors.
The mobilization of funds was facilitated by the African Development Bank (AfDB) on behalf of the project promoters, the Saudi independent power producer (IPP) Acwa Power, the South African Pele Green Energy, the Central Energy Fund and the local community.
The AfDB has allocated more than $152 million to the Northern Cape project while the rest of the financing is provided by development banks, including the British group CDC, the German Deutsche Investitions-und Entwicklungsgesellschaft (DEG), the Dutch Nederlandse Financierings -Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO) and the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) of South Africa.
Absa Bank, Investec Bank, Nedbank and Sanlam are among the private investors involved in financing the Redstone Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) project.
The solar thermal project site has been under construction for nine months. Engineering works are over 58% complete, while procurement and construction are over 45% and 6% complete, respectively, according to the AfDB. The foundations of the tower have already been completed, which represents an important stage in the construction. At this rate, the CSP could be operational in the fourth quarter of 2023.
Overview of the Redstone Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) Project
The Redstone Concentrated Solar Power Project is being developed by a consortium comprised of SolarReserve, a leading energy solutions provider in Africa, and ACWA Power, a power generation plant developer, investor and operator. of desalinated water production, on a 648 hectare site. in the Humansrus solar park east of Postmasburg in the Northern Cape province.
The 100MW project includes a 250m tall central receiving tower with a 12-hour full-load energy storage capacity that allows storage of thermal energy harvested from the sun. The tower uses ThermaVault technology which combines solar thermal technology with molten salt energy storage technology. This feature enables power dispatch after sunset and provides power supply during periods of peak demand, helping to prevent power outages and load shedding.
When complete, the project will provide around 200,000 South African homes with clean, reliable energy through a 20-year power purchase agreement signed with South African utility Eskom, and help offset around 480,000 tonnes of carbon per year, equivalent to the per capita emissions of 67,000 South Africans.
It would be the first renewable energy plant in the country to provide ancillary services. The initiative has been verified by the Climate Bonds Standard and Certification Scheme and is in line with the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement, which aims to keep global warming to less than 2°C.
Redstone CSP project in South Africa to receive US$50 million boost
CDC Group (“CDC”), the UK’s development finance institution (DFI) and impact investor, has announced an investment of US$50 million in direct project financing under the Redstone Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) project in South Africa.
The project is also supported by other investors such as the African Development Bank (AfDB), Absa Bank, Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA), Nedbank, Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO), Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft (DEG), Investec Bank, Sanlam Life Insurance, Pele Green Energy, the government-owned Central Energy Fund and a community trust aimed at benefiting the immediate project area.
The partnership with the lender has resulted in an investment of approximately US$800 million in the Redstone project, making it one of the largest project finance deals ever in the Southern African country.