PROPOSED DEVELOPMENT OF THE BUFFELSPOORT SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) ENERGY FACILITY AND ASSOCIATED INFRASTRUCTURE NEAR MOOINOOI, NORTH-WEST PROVINCE
Applicant: Buffelspoort Solar Project (Pty) Ltd.
Proposed Activity: To develop a Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Energy Facility and associated infrastructure (hereafter referred to as the “Project”) on a site, located approximately 6km west of Mooinooi, within the jurisdiction of the Rustenburg Local Municipality and the Bojanala Platinum District Municipality in the North West Province on the following affected properties (i.e., the project site).
Solar PV Energy Facility:
- Portion 75 of Farm Buffelspoort 343JQ
- Portion 134 of Farm Buffelspoort 343JQ
Grid Connection Corridor:
- Portion 75 of Farm Buffelspoort 343JQ
- Portion 88 of Farm Buffelspoort 343JQ
- Portion 89 of Farm Buffelspoort 343JQ
- Portion 101 of Farm Buffelspoort 343JQ
- Portion 119 of Farm Buffelspoort 343JQ
- Portion 120 of Farm Buffelspoort 343JQ
- Portion 101 of Farm Kafferskraal 342JQ
- Portion 121 of Farm Kafferskraal 342JQ
- Portion 122 of Farm Kafferskraal 342JQ
- Portion 148 of Farm Kafferskraal 342JQ
- Portion 236 of Farm Kafferskraal 342JQ
- Portion 303 of Farm Kafferskraal 342JQ
- Portion 374 of Farm Kafferskraal 342JQ
- Portion 376 of Farm Kafferskraal 342JQ
The Project will have a contracted capacity of up to 40MWp and will be known as the Buffelspoort Solar PV Energy Facility. The purpose of the Project will be to supply power to a private off-taker through connecting to an existing 88kV Substation via a newly proposed 88kV single circuit overhead power line. The overhead power line will be approximately 2.5km in length and will be routed across several privately-owned properties from the onsite facility substation to the point of interconnection, north of the N4. The construction of the Project is aimed at diversifying the energy mix for the private off-taker and to reduce their reliance on Eskom supplied power. It is also a conscious effort for the off-taker to contribute to their sustainability targets and reduce their carbon footprint.
A technically feasible project site, with an extent of ~223ha has been identified by Buffelspoort Solar Project (Pty) Ltd as a technically suitable area for the development of the proposed Project. A development area of ~77ha has been identified within the project site by the project developer for the development. Within this identified development area, a development footprint or facility layout will be defined for assessment in the EIA Phase.
Infrastructure associated with the Solar PV Energy Facility and will include the following:
- Solar PV arrays comprising PV panels and mounting structures.
- Inverters and transformers.
- Cabling between the arrays.
- Onsite facility substation.
- 88kV single circuit overhead power line for the distribution of the generated power, which will be connected to an existing 88kV Substation just north of the proposed project site.
- Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) – to be initiated at a later stage than the Solar PV Energy Facility.
- Temporary laydown area.
- Operations and Maintenance (O&M) building, which will include a site security office, warehouse, storage area and workshop.
- Main access road (existing – to be upgraded with hard surface) and internal (new) gravel roads.
- Fencing around the site, including an access gate.
A grid connection corridor, which varies in width from 200 m to 300m and is up to 2.5km in length has been identified for assessment. The proposed grid connection infrastructure will be positioned within the confines of the assessed corridor. This corridor will allow for the consideration and avoidance of sensitive environmental features.
 The BESS is included as part of the ESIA process albeit that the facility will only be installed after the Solar PV Energy Facility has come into operation. The total electricity requirements for the offtaker is currently under review and an energy master plan is being developed, which will only be finalised post implementation of the Solar PV Energy Facility to address all the electricity needs of the offtaker. The BESS has been included in this ESIA in order to ensure that should the energy master plan require this component to be included sooner than expected that it has already been authorized.
Scoping and Environmental Impact Assessment (S&EIA) Process: In terms of Sections 24 and 24D of the National Environmental Management Act (No 107 of 1998), as read with Government Notice R324 – R327, as amended, a S&EIA process is required for the proposed Buffelspoort Solar PV Energy Facility. Savannah Environmental is undertaking the required S&EIA, and public participation processes for this Project.
Scoping Report Available for Review & Comment: The 30-day review & comment period of the Scoping Report is from Tuesday, 14 June 2022 until Friday, 15 July 2022. The final day to submit a comment is Friday, 15 July 2022.
To obtain further information and register on the project database, please submit your name, contact information and interest in the project to the contact person below.
Nondumiso Bulunga of Savannah Environmental
P.O. Box 148, Sunninghill, 2157
Tel: 011 656 3237
Mobile: 060 978 8396
Fax: 086 684 0547
Documents for public review are available for download.
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