ArcelorMittal’s South Africa subsidiary is planning to use solar power from independent power producers (IPPs) for six of its steelmaking facilities.
The steelmaker plans to power its steelmaking facilities in Vanderbijlpark, Newcastle, Vereeniging, Pretoria, Thabazimbi, and Saldanha through solar grids. According to media reports, a 100megawatt solar plant will be set up for the Vanderbijlpark facility while the rest will have 10-megawatt solar plants.
The company is looking to release a tender for IPPs to bid for the contract by August 28. The selected firms will be responsible for conducting feasibility tests, getting licenses and permits as well as undertaking the cost of construction. The land will be provided by ArcelorMittal.
The move is aimed at reducing electricity costs as well as securing a steady supply of power to the sites. South African companies such as ArcelorMittal want to reduce their dependency on the state-led provider Eskom which derives power from coal.
Environmental concerns are also involved in this decision, as it will considerably lower emission of greenhouse gases from the sites.