Date: Oct 24, 2018

The state-run power firm, Eskom, said on Tuesday it is planning its first major battery storage project as President Cyril Ramaphosa seeks to boost renewable energy usage and reduce the country’s reliance on coal.

Prince Moyo, general manager for power delivery engineering at Eskom, told Reuters that the battery storage project would be rolled out in phases across 90 sites, with a tender for the first phase pencilled in for early next year.

“At this stage, the focus is on storing energy for the benefit of all our customers. The aim is to ensure the security of power supply,” Moyo said.

Although the 1,440-megawatt hour per day battery project would be able to store less than one percent of Eskom’s total generating capacity, it is a sign the utility is following through on promises to prioritise renewable energy ventures.

The project should also help smooth relations with the World Bank, which had become frustrated over the slow progress made on renewable power plans since it approved a more than $3 billion loan in 2010 to support green energy.

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