With the ongoing electricity price increases, it is no surprise that
many wine farms are turning to renewable power generation, in particular
utilizing the power generated from solar photovoltaic’s (PV).
In the past exorbitant costs made solar PV a non-viable option for most industries including the wine industry, but over the past 2 years with a close to70% reduction in solar module prices, costs have achieved levels that justify the implementation of a solar plant at any wine farm.
Soventix South Africa is presently developing solar plants for a number of wine farms in the Western Cape, the two newest such projects will be commissioned within the next month. These include a 44.65kWp ground mount array at Oldenburg Vineyards and a 51kWp roof mount plant on the newly constructed restaurant at Cavalli Wine & Stud Farm
In 2012, Soventix, in conjunction with Blaauwklippen Vineyards installed a 4.23kWp ground mounted (Figure 2) test site on the estate. The purpose of this project is to attain and log actual yield data, which will provide an invaluable source of information for other potential projects in the surrounding areas. The plant went live towards the end of November 2012 and to date has generated close to 4MWh of clean energy.
To put the potential savings into perspective; a 100kWp solar plant would generate savings in the region of R134,000.00in the first year (savings are dependent on the applied utility tariff). Assuming a conservative utility escalation of 10% per annum, the accrued savings over a 20 year period would exceed R6,9mil.
Soventix has also provided some smaller systems into the wine sector; Bein Private Wine Cellar, another farm near Stellenbosch, who are extremely focused on sustainable practices, opted for a 7.75kWp solar plant. This was installed on the roof of the main house and generates power for both the house and cellar at the farm.
Wine farms, like any other business want to save money and Soventix believes that they can offer the right solution to any wine farm, helping them to hedge their costs against the looming electricity hike.
Soventix South Africa (Pty) Ltd will be presenting on the benefits of solar PV to the wine sector during the Clean Power Africa exhibition at the CTICC. The presentationis set to kick off at 2pm on 15 May 2013 and entrance is completely free.
To find out more information about Soventix, or how we could assist you in your solar project development, please contact Rowan Jacklin,the General Manager for Soventix South Africa, or go to www.soventix.co.za.
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