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Africa Data Centres to power facilities in SA with solar energy

By , ITWeb
Africa , South Africa , 14 Mar 2023
Tesh Durvasula, CEO of Africa Data Centres.
Tesh Durvasula, CEO of Africa Data Centres.

Cassava technologies-owned Africa Data Centres (ADC) has penned a 20-year power purchase agreement with DPA Southern Africa (DPA SA) to supply its facilities in South Africa with renewable solar energy.

DPA SA is a 50:50 joint company of Distributed Power Africa and French utility company, EDF, and the two companies intend to develop hybrid energy solutions for clients across Africa.

Under the terms of the agreement, DPA SA will supply 12MW of renewable solar energy to ADC facilities, partly from the solar farm it is developing near Bloemfontein.

The development comes on the back of recent calls for data centre providers in Africa to develop energy-efficient systems to power their facilities.

Senior industry executives say demand for sustainable data centres will soon accelerate, as consumers are progressively conscious of the United Nations Environment Sustainable Goals.

To this end, for ADC, working together DPA SA will help both parties reach Sustainable Development Goals.

"Through this agreement, our customers will benefit from a sustainable data centre," says Tesh Durvasula, ADC CEO.

“While data centres are the foundation of the digital transformation process in Africa, they require reliable, cost effective and preferably green power to operate.

“Our partnership with DPA will also help in reducing our reliance on the strained South African national grid, enabling us to play our part in alleviating the current energy challenges facing the country."

According to Durvasula, "Each year, the data centre industry must try to accommodate two fundamental goals. 

"Firstly, it must meet the demand for the capacity needed to support the ever-increasing range of high-performance computing, digital services, edge environments and connected devices.

"Secondly, it must find ways to lower energy usage and reduce its universal impact resources that are already stretched to the limit."

He continues: "This new deal will provide over 30% of our South African data centres with renewable energy, a great stride forward in our aim to reach carbon neutrality.

"By signing this latest PPA, we will reach our second milestone towards carbon neutrality. 

"Our first milestone was to optimise our roof space with solar, and this latest deal will see us utilising the recently approved wheeling mechanism within South Africa's municipalities".

Commenting on the partnership Norman Moyo, DPA CEO, says: "Our customers are looking for cost-effective and efficient ways of meeting their green targets and reduce energy costs for their businesses in a climate of increased power shortages. 

"We are excited to embark on this milestone project with Africa Data Centres as it will demonstrate our innovation in deploying renewable energy solutions".

Valérie Levkov, senior VP Africa and Middle East at EDF, says the the agreement with Africa Data Centres re-affirms his company's commitment to provide low carbon solutions for commercial and industrial client in Africa.

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