Inspired Schools, renowned for its Reddam House private school brand in South Africa, is gearing up to launch a substantial solar initiative next month. With an estimated value of R85 million, the project is set to kick off in September and is slated for completion by year-end.
The strategic venture is aimed at mitigating the adverse effects of load shedding, ensuring uninterrupted educational activities across 11 schools. Building on the success of a pilot solar project initiated at Reddam House Constantia in November 2022, Inspired Schools is collaborating with an engineering firm that will oversee the design, installation, and maintenance of solar systems across all participating campuses.
The groundbreaking project entails the installation of advanced solar panels alongside large-scale lithium batteries, effectively generating clean and sustainable electricity. This innovative approach guarantees continuous power supply even during load-shedding occurrences, bolstering the educational experience for students.
As part of its commitment to sustainability, Inspired Schools South Africa seeks not only to combat load shedding but also to reduce its carbon footprint and contribute to a greener future by embracing renewable energy.
This initiative aligns with a wider trend of substantial growth in solar photovoltaic (PV) projects across South Africa. The nation marked a significant milestone in 2023 by importing solar panels worth over R8.4 billion in the second quarter, double the amount imported in the first quarter. This surge in solar imports is attributed to private sector-driven projects that aim to address load-shedding concerns and capitalize on tax incentives.
However, amidst the solar boom, concerns have emerged regarding the dominance of Chinese imports in the market, with local producers and businesses missing out on opportunities. Despite these challenges, South Africa’s government is actively engaging with China to secure access to more panels, highlighting the importance of solar energy to alleviate the country’s energy crisis. In this context, China has provided R170 million worth of equipment to support South Africa’s energy needs and is exploring further investments in the sector.