Index Kouga Wind Farm goes live
Date Added: 07 September 2015

Eastern Cape MEC for Economic Development, Environmental Affairs and Tourism, Sakhumzi Somyo, officially opened operations of the Kouga Wind Farm outside Oyster Bay in the Kouga Local Municipality on 4 September, during a special gala event.

Located a short distance from the already functioning Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm, the new R2-billion facility comprises of 32 turbines with a combined energy generating capacity of 80 megawatts, enough to power some 50 000 homes with clean green energy.

It is also the seventh out of seventeen renewable energy sites located in the Eastern Cape to go live since the drafting of government’s National Renewable Energy Procurement Programme in 2008, and has resulted in the creation of 1 000 jobs with 350 being local residents.

“The Kouga Wind Farm has been the culmination of many years hard work and all those involved needs to be congratulated. As the department, we are very excited to see these farms [being erected] with Kouga being a prime example,” MEC Somyo told Sarah Baartman News afterwards.

“These turbines will without doubt contribute a lot in the moving away from load shedding while also contributing to the national grid”.

Among the high ranking dignitaries attending the event, was the Executive Mayor of the Sarah Baartman District Municipality Khunjuzwa Eunice Kekana; Kouga Local Municipality Mayor Daphne Kettledas; Sarah Baartman District Municipality Portfolio Councillor Notizi Vanda; Kouga Wind Farm CEO Lukhanyo Ndube; Director of the Kouga Wind Farm Mark Tanton as well as department officials, local councillors, stakeholders and contractors.

Speaking at a post unveiling lunch session in St Francis Bay, Mayor Kettledas stated that the completion of the wind farm has moved Kouga one step closer in consolidating its position as the renewable energy hub of South Africa.

“For us as Kouga, the wind farm is more than an area with massive turbines pumping energy back into the national grid. It is an integral part of the community in the area where it now stands,” Mayor Kettledas said.

“Through the wind farm, the community of Umzamowethu now have access to a clinic and computer lab at the local school. We are looking forward to our communities going from strength and strength and welcome the winds of change to Kouga”.

In her statement, Executive Mayor Kekana expressed hope that the wind farm would go further in boosting local job creation as per the goals set out in the National Development Plan (NDP).

“This renewable project is likely to have a huge impact on our provincial and regional economy. We have witnessed a significant population growth in Kouga since the National Renewable Energy Procurement Programme’s launch.

“There is no doubt that the economic landscape of Kouga is changing, and we as the Sarah Baartman District Municipality, will continue in facilitating economic development through job creation and making resources available,” Mayor Kekana said. 

CAPTION: Eastern Cape MEC for Economic Development, Environmental Affairs and Tourism, Sakhumzi Somyo, unveils the plaque during a post lunch briefing following the opening of the Kouga Wind Farm. Joining in are (L-R) Kouga Wind Farm CEO Lukhanyo Ndube, Kouga Local Municipality Mayor Daphne Kettledas and the Executive Mayor of the Sarah Baartman District Municipality Khunjuzwa Eunice Kekana.