Heineken solarizes South African brewery with 6.5MW solar plant

SOUTH AFRICA – Heineken South Africa has made significant step-change towards more sustainable brewing, with the launch of its newly installed solar plant, at its Sedibeng Brewery outside Johannesburg.

The plant boasts 14,000 panels that move with the rising and setting of the sun, having a significant 6.5MW of power, targeted to reduce the brewery’s carbon impact by about 30%.

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The project has been undertaken in partnership with a vertically-integrated provider of renewable energy solutions in Africa, The SOLA Group, signing a 15-year power purchasing agreement.

This investment complements Heineken’s Brewing a Better World goal to net zero impact and increase the share of renewable energy in production to 70% by 2030.

In line with its sustainability goals, the brewing giant recently concluded its water reclamation plant still at the Sedibeng Brewery.

The plant will help the drinks maker to deliver on its commitments for the maintenance and sustainability of healthy watersheds.

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Heineken’s goal is to reduce the water ratio of 3.6 litres to 2.5 litres for each litre of beer produced, and the plant will enable them to achieve this strategic goal.

According to the company, the treated water from the reclamation plant will not be used in the beer itself, but will be used for service water and cleaning around the brewery.

Further speeding up transition to Brewing a Better World, Heineken’s West Africa based subsidiary, Nigerian Breweries Plc (NB Plc), has signed a power purchase agreement with Konexa, an integrated energy development and investment platform to deliver 100 per cent renewable energy that will fully cover the electricity needs of its two breweries in Kaduna state.

Under the terms of the ten-year agreement, Nigerian Breweries Plc has outsourced the power supply for its critical loads for its breweries, converting from fossil fuels into a full-service renewable energy solution, using hydropower sources.

This investment comes a year after the brewer commissioned its 663.6kwP solar plant worth over N300 million (732,000) at its Ibadan brewery.

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Installed by CrossBoundary Energy, a renewable energy company with a focus on providing funding for off-grid solutions for businesses in Africa, the solar plant will supply approximately 1, 000 megawatts per hour (mwh) to the brewery annually, at a significant discount to their current cost of power.

The landmark project which can approximately brew 13.3 million bottles of its Star Lager beer will reduce the site’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by over 10, 000 tonnes over the lifespan of the plant.

CrossBoundary Energy will operate the rooftop facility on behalf of Nigerian Breweries as part of a 15-year solar services agreement.

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