Electronics giant Siemens has started the construction of two 50MW solar projects in South Africa – of which the majority of shares are owned by a British firm.
Located in the Northern Cape, the two projects are part of a €500 million (£440.6m) investment, which also includes a 138MW wind project.
UK power company Globeleq, which is the majority shareholder and works towards developing energy solutions for emerging markets, won the bid for the projects and said they are part of its plans to deliver clean and reliable energy to the people of South Africa.
The projects are expected to supply enough renewable energy to power more than 156,000 homes every year and cut around 580,000 tonnes of carbon emissions. They are part of the Government of South Africa’s Renewable Energy Programme and are claimed to be among the “very first large scale” renewable power plants to be built in the country.
Mikael Karlsson, Chief Executive Officer for Globeleq said: “The start of construction of these three projects reinforces the dedication and leadership of the South African government to climate change and the necessity for diversifying the energy supply for the country.”
The projects are also aimed at helping South Africa meet its goal of reducing carbon emissions by 34% by 2022. All three projects are expected to start operation mid next year.