efe-epaJohannesburg

Spanish engineering and energy multinational company Abengoa on Friday launched at full capacity its third solar power plant in South Africa, in the province of Northern Cape, sources within the company reported.

With an installed capacity of 100 MW, the plant, called Xina Solar One, has the capacity to power approximately 95,000 South African homes.

Abengoa's vice president of development in South Africa, Dominic Goncalves, told EFE that the plant represents a step forward for the company, adding that Abengoa is proud to contribute to sustainable development in a country that is still heavily dependent on fossil fuels.

The Spanish multinational, which partnered in this project with the South African Industrial Development Corporation, Public Investment Corporation and Xina Community Trust, already have two other plants in the area: Kaxu Solar One and Khi Solar One.

The three plants together have an installed capacity of 250 MW, and can provide energy for about 220,000 homes which offsets 831,000 tons of CO2 emissions each year.

Goncalves said that South Africa and Africa in general are key markets for Abengoa, as population growth opens business opportunities for increasing energy production.

He added that the high levels of solar radiation in the Northern Cape province of South Africa makes the region an ideal place to develop more solar power plants.

With the new plant, South Africa is to be one step closer to its ovearal goal of reaching a production of 17,800 MW of renewable energy by 2030.