Power Solutions, a South African EPC company, with its partner, SolarWorld Africa, a 100% subsidiary and the sub-Saharan African distribution arm of SolarWorld AG, will supply Africa’s largest roof-mounted photovoltaic system to date in the Dube TradePort’s ‘Agrizone’ at Durban International Airport.
This photovoltaic installation, with a capacity scheduled to exceed 600kWp, was given permission by the eThekwini authorities to connect to the municipal grid. “Our fit out of solar panelling for the pack houses at the AgriZone is part of our overall strategy to drive sustainability of the businesses that are operating from the AgriZone”, says Rohan Persad, CEO of the Dube TradePort Corporation, “The source of power provides cost efficiencies for operations and lowers our carbon foot print in our first perishables supply chain. We are very excited to be working with Power Solutions and SolarWorld in installing the largest photovoltaic installation in the country”.
The first phase of the installation takes place on the logistics and storage facility and will feed power to the Agrizone grid before the start of the COP17 Climate Change Conference in Durban on the 28 November. The second phase of the installation will be installed on the warehousing facility once the building construction has been completed.
The solar power generated will supply the Agrizone grid with electricity to power cold storage for the produce harvested from the greenhouses as well as the packing lines, packing equipment, offices and storage. “This ground-breaking photovoltaic installation will make a significant contribution towards meeting the energy requirements of the Agrizone’s pack houses and in doing so, enable a more sustainable and environmentally sound operation at Africa’s most advanced hydroponics facility.” says Axel Scholle, Director of Power Solutions and lead engineer on the project.
The total installation will off-set the carbon emissions of the Dube TradePort by 830 tons of CO2 every year for more than twenty-five years.
“Having been present in the African market since 2006, we are very proud to be involved in this lighthouse project which showcases the African continent’s unlimited potential for solar power generation especially at such an important time when the world’s focus is centred on Durban as it hosts the COP17.” says SolarWorld Africa’s Managing Director Gregor Küpper.