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Italian company Enel Green Power’s (EGP) South African subsidiary EGP RSA has commenced construction on the 140MW Garob windfarm near Copperton in South Africa’s Northern Cape province.

Garob is the group’s fifth wind project in the country and will involve an investment of more than €200m. The other projects being constructed in South Africa are the Nxuba and Oyster Bay windfarms of 140MW each.

The windfarm is expected to become operational in the first half of 2021, generating around 573GWh per year and avoiding the emission of around 600,000 tonnes of CO2 annually.

EGP RSA won the Garob project during the fourth bidding window under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP).

EGP will take up enterprise development initiatives in the communities living in the proximity of the windfarm once Garob is operational. These initiatives include an artificial turf football field has that captures and stores rainwater. A water purification facility will treat the rainwater, addressing water shortage and providing clean drinking water.

Free Wi-Fi is also being provided to local communities to support public authorities’ plans to roll out free Wi-Fi networks in under-served communities.

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By GlobalData

Enel Green Power head Antonio Cammisecra said: “With the start of construction of Garob, we have reached yet another important milestone in South Africa just weeks after breaking ground at the Oyster Bay wind project.

“Alongside boosting renewables growth in South Africa, we are focusing our sustainability activities on scientific education, which significantly contributes to the skills needed for power industry professionals, with a view to support local expertise.”