South Africa’s 100 MW Xina CSP plant achieves financial close

A 100 MW concentrated solar power (CSP) plant which will be built in South Africa has reached financial close, lenders’ technical advisor Mott MacDonald has announced.

The $800m Xina Solar One plant is planned to produce enough power for over 95,000 households and save 348,000 tonnes of CO2 per year. Its power will be sold to utility Eskom under a 20-year power purchase agreement.

Plans for the parabolic trough plant include a five-hour molten salt energy storage system to help meet evening peak demand.

Xina Solar One is to be built near the northern city of Pofadder next to the 100 MW KaXu Solar One CSP plant (pictured), which has a molten salt storage capacity of 2.5 hours. Together the two plants will form Africa’s largest solar complex.

The plant will be built under South Africa’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer (REIPPP) programme by co-developers Abengoa Solar, Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), Public Investment Corporation (PIC) and Xina Community Trust, with funds from the African Development Bank, the International Finance Corporation, IDC, the Development Bank of Southern Africa and Absa Bank, a subsidiary of the Barclays Africa Group.  

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