Sturdee Energy has achieved a Commercial Operation Date (COD) on October 12, 2023, as stipulated in the Power Purchase Agreements with Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) for the Shakawe (1MW) and Bobonong (3MW) Solar Plants in Botswana. These projects are Botswana’s first independent renewable energy power producers and mark a significant milestone in the nation’s transition towards clean energy.
The Shakawe and Bobonong solar photovoltaic power plants are now operational in Botswana, injecting a total of 4 MW into the national electricity grid. These solar energy facilities, established through public-private partnerships (PPP), are a crucial step towards large-scale solar power generation in Botswana. The 3 MWp plant is located in Bobonong, an eastern sub-district, while the 1 MWp plant is situated in the town of Shakawe in the North-West district.
In their inaugural year of operation, these plants are expected to collectively generate 10,000 MWh of electricity. The PPP agreements, signed in 2020 between the Botswana government and Sturdee Energy, a South African company based in Johannesburg, facilitated the development of these solar power projects.
Sturdee Energy, an independent power producer (IPP), collaborated with the German firm Soventix to install solar panels, inverters, and related equipment for these plants. The electricity generated is supplied to the state-owned Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) under a 25-year contract.
The investment for these two solar plants amounted to $5 million, with Sturdee Energy securing financial support from ResponsAbility, an investment company headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland. The Bobonong and Shakawe solar photovoltaic plants are contributing to the diversification of Botswana’s energy sources, a significant move away from the country’s reliance on fossil fuels, particularly coal (80%) and gas, which collectively constitute the entirety of its 993 MW installed capacity, according to Power Africa. Solar energy is playing a pivotal role in Botswana’s transition to cleaner and more sustainable energy sources.