Solar plant to serve as sustainable power solution for B2Gold’s Otjikoto project
The Ministry of Mines and Energy this week inaugurated B2Gold Otjikoto’s 7MW solar farm, which has been recognised as one of the largest solar installations in the country.
The plant will serve as a sustainable power solution as B2Gold works to improve economic returns, reduce impacts on the environment, and could potentially be a funding source for community development.
B2Gold said the expected saving on the consumption of Heavy Fuel Oil is in the region of 20%.
The Energy Minister Tom Alweendo at the commissioning said this will not only reduce costs, but will also significantly reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions.
As part of the 5th national development plan, government has a target of 750MW of locally generated energy by the year 2022.
As part of the Renewable Energy Feed-in Tarrif (REFIT) programme, 9 projects in various towns across the country have connected to the national grid, adding a total of 45MW of clean energy.
Applauding B2Gold on the investment, Alweendo said it shows that the company is committed to innovative and responsible mining.
“It is my firm belief that our socio-economic development challenges will be addressed more successfully when there is an effective partnership between the Governments, the private sector as well as with the citizens. It cannot be correct to think that it is only the Government that can or must solve all the developmental challenges facing us as a country,” Alweendo said.
Both the 5th national development plan and the Harambee Prosperity Plan recognise energy as a priority infrastructure needed for the country’s socio-economic development agenda.
Namibia has, in terms of energy, one of the world’s second best solar resource, a significant amount of biomass and an excellent wind regime.