Categories: EnergyNews
| On
2024-02-13 9:44 AM

Cape Town Launches ‘Cash for Power’ Program

  • Cape Town introduces "Cash for Power" program, enabling residents to monetize excess solar energy.
  • Residents can sell surplus electricity to the city, contributing to renewable energy goals.
  • Initiative includes incentives for load reduction and peer-to-peer energy trading.
By Miriam Matoma

In a significant move towards renewable energy adoption, the City of Cape Town has initiated a pioneering scheme aimed at incentivizing residents to harness and monetize surplus solar power generated by their residential photovoltaic (PV) systems.

Announced by City Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis, the launch of the “Cash for Power” program marks a significant shift in how households can benefit financially from their investment in solar energy infrastructure. Under this scheme, residential properties equipped with solar PV systems now have the opportunity to directly sell excess electricity to the city, receiving monetary compensation in return.

Hill-Lewis emphasized the city’s commitment to purchasing surplus solar power from participating households and businesses, effectively diversifying Cape Town’s energy mix while providing economic incentives for renewable energy adoption.

The program also introduces innovative strategies to mitigate energy demand during peak periods. Through the “Power Heroes” initiative, homeowners can volunteer to remotely control their geysers, contributing to load reduction efforts and potentially averting the need for widespread load shedding.

Furthermore, the City of Cape Town is facilitating peer-to-peer energy trading among businesses, enabling them to sell and distribute surplus electricity across the grid. This decentralized approach is projected to add substantial capacity to Cape Town’s energy infrastructure, reducing reliance on centralized power generation.

Aligned with the city’s long-term vision outlined in its roadmap to 2050, the “Cash for Power” program represents a crucial step towards achieving energy sustainability and resilience. With short-term objectives aimed at mitigating the impact of load shedding by 2026, Cape Town is positioning itself as a leader in renewable energy innovation.

How to Participate in the Cash for Power Program

Residents interested in participating in the “Cash for Power” program are encouraged to submit applications before the deadline on 8 March 2024. Applications should be sent to hoosain.essop@capetown.gov.za.

To be eligible for the program, residential customers must meet the following criteria:

  1. Install a grid-tied solar PV system with a city-approved inverter.
  2. Obtain authorization from the city for grid connection before installation.
  3. Transition to or remain on the Home User tariff.
  4. Install an Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) meter at the prescribed Feed-in Tariff rate.
  5. Excess electricity fed into the grid will be credited to the customer’s monthly municipal account at the specified rate.
  6. Customers with surplus credit exceeding R1,000 will receive cash payouts annually.

It is essential for interested parties to register as service providers on both the City Supplier Database and the National Treasury web-based Central Supplier Database (CSD) before submitting their applications.

Applications received after the deadline will be considered for subsequent rounds, with future dates to be announced by the city. Successful applicants will enter into contractual agreements with the city for a period of three years.

Residents who solely wish to offset their electricity and rates accounts are not required to apply separately, as compensation will be automatically provided upon authorization of their grid-tied SSEG system with feed-in.

Councilor Van Reenen emphasized the opportunity for residents to go beyond offsetting and earn cash rewards for their surplus energy contributions, reinforcing the city’s commitment to incentivizing renewable energy adoption among its citizens.

Conclusion

Cape Town’s “Cash for Power” program exemplifies a proactive approach towards sustainable energy development, offering residents a tangible pathway to contribute to the city’s energy transition while receiving financial benefits. By harnessing the power of solar energy and incentivizing participation through innovative schemes, Cape Town is poised to emerge as a frontrunner in the global movement towards renewable energy adoption.

Residents are encouraged to seize this opportunity to not only reduce their carbon footprint but also generate income through their renewable energy investments, thereby contributing to a greener and more prosperous future for Cape Town and its residents.

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Miriam Matoma

Miriam is a freelance writer, she covers economics and government news for Rateweb. You can contact her on: Email: miriam@rateweb.co.za Twitter: @MatomaMiriam