DWS calls on IPPs to apply for hydropower generation water use licences

5th April 2023 By: Natasha Odendaal - Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) is preparing to open applications for independent power producers (IPPs) to apply for water use authorisations to use its water resources, water courses and infrastructure, such as rivers and dams, to generate hydropower as an alternative energy to supplement the current electricity available in the grid.

Applications will open on April 17 for interested parties to submit preapplications for water use authorisations for hydropower technologies such as impoundment; river diversion or run-of-river; pumped storage and floating or kinetic turbines (small scale generating capacity), as well as floating solar panels.

The DWS Hydropower IPP programme was initiated in an effort to allow for the available infrastructure and water courses to be used to contribute to the power grid with renewable energy.

Government has approved multipronged interventions to address the current energy crisis which has led to loadshedding across the country in order to manage available energy.

One of the key objectives of the government’s Energy Action Plan is to remove barriers to new generation capacity and unlock energy from many different sources, including IPPs, in order to add as much energy as possible to the grid.

Linked to this objective is an intervention aimed at enabling and accelerating private investment in generation capacity.

The DWS will host a briefing to outline the programme and application process on April 11.