Western Cape green energy gets green light

The West Coast One Wind Energy Facility located in the Western Cape, South Africa has been given approval by the National Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) to commence construction of the 55 turbine wind farm.

Windlab initially identified the site, approximately 5.5km north of Vredenburg, using its world-leading Windscape mapping technology. An agreement was signed with Investec Bank Limited in October 2008 to further develop the project and confirm the feasibility of the site.

With advanced wind modeling tools Windlab are able to remotely locate and validate new, highly prospective sites rapidly. Windlab is actively developing wind energy sites in a number of countries including South Africa. Windlab's engineering experts apply the Windscape technology to model the wind speeds and select sites that have a high potential for wind farm development.

The Western Cape project is managed by Moyeng Energy Pty Ltd. Moyeng was created to develop Wind Power Projects in the Northern and Western Cape Provinces of South Africa.

Savannah Environmental was appointed by Moyeng to undertake a Scoping and Environmental Impact Assessment to identify and assess all potential environmental impacts associated with the proposed project. As part of these environmental studies the community was actively involved through a public consultation process conducted by Sustainable Futures ZA. Once the assessment was completed approval could then be sought from the DEA.

The overall aim of the design and layout of the facility is to maximize electricity production through exposure to the wind resource, while minimizing infrastructure, operation and maintenance costs, and social and environmental impacts.

The successful progression of this project enhances Windlab's substantial growth of wind farm technology and renewable energy in South Africa.