Load sharing

South Africa: Old Mutual’s AIIM renewable projects can help end Eskom load-shedding

By David Whitehouse

Premium badge Reserved for subscribers

Posted on July 5, 2022 04:00

De Wildt 2 © AIIM is a shareholder in the De Wildt solar field near Brits in South Africa’s North West Province. Photo supplied.
AIIM is a shareholder in the De Wildt solar field near Brits in South Africa’s North West Province. Photo supplied.

A planned pipeline of renewable energy projects backed by African Infrastructure Investment Managers (AIIM) has the potential to help end South African load-shedding, joint managing director Vuyo Ntoi tells The Africa Report.

AIIM is part of Old Mutual Alternative Investments and manages private-equity funds that invest in African infrastructure. The firm, which has $2.4bn under management, recently upgraded its new project pipeline in South Africa from 2,000 to 5,000MW, which it aims to implement in the next three years. The pipeline can “greatly reduce the impact of load shedding,” Ntoi says.

The project pipeline, which AIIM has hired specialist teams to develop, will be made up of at least 100 different operations with average capacity of 50MW or less, Ntoi says. That kind of diversified portfolio will help to resolve the intermittency of solar resources, he says.

Rather than helping to meet peak demand, renewables will also be able to contribute to baseload. State-owned power utility Eskom, he says, is currently using plants designed to meet peak demand as baseload suppliers.

Freeing up “peakers”, to act

There's more to this story

Get unlimited access to our exclusive journalism and features today. Our award-winning team of correspondents and editors report from over 54 African countries, from Cape Town to Cairo, from Abidjan to Abuja to Addis Ababa. Africa. Unlocked.

Subscribe Now

cancel anytime