Serengeti Energy has announced that the Boston Hydro project – its 5MW run-off-river power plant located on the Ash River within the Lesotho Highlands Water Scheme (LHWS) – has reached financial close and construction has commenced. The company also announced that it is joining South Africa’s first wind-hydro-solar wheeling renewable energy collaboration as the exclusive hydroelectric power partner after signing a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Growthpoint Properties.

Construction started on the Boston Hydro project back in late October 2023 and is scheduled to start its commercial operations in July 2025. The 30GWh per annum of electricity that will be generated by the plant will be wheeled via the Eskom grid and traded by Etana to various Growthpoint Properties commercial buildings across South Africa.

“We are thrilled to announce the financial close and commencement of construction for Boston Hydro Power Plant,” said Serengeti Energy CEO, Anton-Louis Olivier. “This milestone underscores Serengeti Energy’s ability to meet the growing demand for renewable energy while fostering environmental stewardship and economic growth for the region.

“Boston Hydro will result in the reduction of some 600,000 tons of CO2 emissions over a 20year period. In addition, the construction of the project will create 100 jobs with the bulk of these jobs being local,” he added.

Boston Hydro is Serengeti Energy’s fourth hydroelectric plant along the Ash River water transfer scheme. With the commissioning of 3MW Sol Plaatje in 2009, 4MW Merino in 2010, and 4MW Stortemelk in 2016, Serengeti Energy has been contributing non-intermittent, baseload power to the national grid. The strategic placement of Boston Hydro positions Serengeti Energy to leverage the LHWS Phase 2 expansion, further enhancing its contribution to base load generation.

This private sector PPA establishes a new model for the development of power projects in South Africa and for consumers to ensure their access to reliable, sustainable and affordable clean energy. Private PPAs are emerging as a viable route for achieving energy security, diversifying energy sources, and driving economic development in South Africa and beyond.