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Third battery storage programme seeks bids for five Free State sites

The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) has launched South Africa’s third public procurement round for utility-scale batteries, while also extending the bid submission deadline for Bid Window Two (BW2) of the Battery Energy Storage Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (BESIPPPP) launched in December, and naming a fifth preferred bidder from BW1.

In a statement, the department said the BESIPPPP BW3 request for proposals was seeking bidders for 616 MW/2 464 MWh of battery projects by July 31 for five pre-selected substation sites.

The sites, which have been identified by Eskom, are all located in the Free State and include the Harvard, Leander, Theseus, Everest, and Merapi substations.


The DMRE also confirmed an extension to the bid submission date for BESIPPPP BW2 from April 30 to June 6, having previously announced a similar extension for BW7 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme from April 30 to May 30.

The extensions, the DMRE indicated, were granted so as to align with the new timelines granted for application for cost estimate letters from Eskom for grid connection, as well as requests from potential bidders.

Meanwhile, the department also announced the appointment of a fifth preferred bidder for BESIPPPP BW1, having selected the other four on November 30, following the inaugural public procurement round for battery storage for 513 MW/2 025 MWh launched in March last year.

Following “value for money” negotiations, the DMRE reported that AGV Projects had been selected to build the 153 MW Red Sands battery energy storage project at the Garona substation, one of five Northern Cape substations sites identified for the round by Eskom.

The Red Sands battery energy storage project had an investment value of R6.4-billion and a bid evaluation price of R16.5-billion, or R546/MWh cost.

The other four projects had a combined investment value of R10-billion and a combined capacity of 360 MW/1 440 MWh.

They included the 77 MW apiece Oasis Aggeneis and Oasis Mookodi projects, the 103 MW Oasis Nieuwehoop, all being developed by consortia led by EDF, as well as the 103 MW Mogobe battery energy storage project, being developed by a Scatec-led consortium. 

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