Heritage Cases

DEVIATION OF THE AUTHORISED 88KV POWERLINE AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE ESKOM PORTION OF THE ON-SITE SUBSTATION FOR THE AUTHORISED WAAIHOEK WIND ENERGY FACILITY, EMADLANGENI LOCAL MUNICIPALITY (AMAJUBA DISTRICT), KWA-ZULU NATAL PROVINCE

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Status: 

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Development Type: 

ProposalDescription: 

Waaihoek Wind Farm (Pty) Ltd, is proposing a deviation to the powerline route and associated infrastructure from the authorised 88kV powerline and the addition of an Eskom portion of the on-site substation for the Waaihoek Wind Energy Facility (WEF). The authorised WEF is located south-east of Utrecht in the Emadlangeni Local Municipality, KwaZulu-Natal Province approximately 25km south west of the town of Vryheid

Expanded_Motivation: 

The developer bid the wind energy facility and associated infrastructure into the Renewable Energy IPP Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) Bid Window 5 for the procurement of up to 1 600MW of onshore wind energy technologies. On the 28th October 2021, the Minister of the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy, Mr Gwede Mantashe, announced the Preferred Bidders of the Fifth Bid Submission of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, of which Waaihoek Wind Farm (Pty) Ltd has received Preferred Bidder Status. The 25.5km power line infrastructure for the authorised Waaihoek Wind Energy Facility had previously been authorised (DEA Ref:. 14/12/16/3/3/2/654), however following consultation with Eskom and landowners, the powerline routing is proposed to be deviated outside of the previously assessed servitude in order to optimize the routing for associated with the final layout of the Waaihoek Wind Energy Facility. The proponent now proposes a deviation from this authorised route along the entire length of the powerline for approximately 25,4km. The deviation of the grid connection infrastructure is proposed in order to meet the requirements of the Bid Window 5 and meet financial close as the project has been selected as a preferred bidder. The infrastructure and key components considered as part of this Basic Assessment process includes:  Deviation of the authorized powerline, the deviation will occur along the length of the authorised route as portions of this new optimized routing falls outside of the previously authorised and assessed 50-70m servitude.  The length of the powerline will be approximately 25,4km  Jeep tracks of up to 4m wide and water crossings will be constructed along the powerline route to allow for construction and maintenance activities and will be assessed within a 400m along the length of the powerline route for approximately 25,4km  A grid corridor of approximately 400m (200m on either side) will be assessed for the length of the powerline route.  The Eskom portion of the 88kV switching station with a footprint of 60m x 60m within an assessed development footprint of 110m x 110m. The on-site substation has been authorised for the Waaihoek Wind Energy Facility, however it must be noted that should the Environmental Authorisation for this powerline deviation and Eskom switching be granted, it will be ceded over to Eskom during the operation phase of the project. The proposed 88kV powerline route selected to evacuate power from the authorised Waaihoek WEF is informed by the most feasible grid connection point into the national grid by providing suitable setbacks to the proposed Waaihoek wind farms’ turbines and to follow the existing Eskom servitude as closely as possible, while reducing/optimizing crossing points. The placement of the grid connection corridor also provides an opportunity for the consolidation of linear electrical infrastructure within the area, inclusive of the impacts that are bundled together at this location, this can be seen as an advantage to the development of the grid connection infrastructure from a social and environmental impact perspective.

ApplicationDate: 

Thursday, August 11, 2022 - 07:12

CaseID: 

19278

OtherReferences: 

Dept CaseReference DueDate FinalDecision
DFFE 09/09/2022

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