With PV solar already installed at 16 of its 30 assets, currently generating in excess of 5,2MW for the portfolio with further scaling this year to 7,2MW, Spear Reit remains on track with its strategy to mitigate the country’s current energy crisis by investing into a non-fossil fuel generated electrical supply, the Western Cape focused fund said on Wednesday.
Spear’s second phase solar expansion at Mega Park and Sable Square in quarter three 2023 will further bolster management’s sustainability strategy as the company gears towards less reliance on Eskom power in the near future.
Spear’s CEO, Quintin Rossi said that the group it had to be less reliant on Eskom.
A year ago the group had already set out to roll out PV solar solutions across 50% of its property portfolio, with further projects committed to increase that to 63% towards the end of 2023. Fast forward 14 months; only two of its 30 assets are now currently supplied by Eskom – the balance of the portfolio is all provided for by the City of Cape Town.
The City of Cape Town is making remarkable headway in getting off the grid and by 2024 it is projected that an additional 500MW of dispatchable power will become available to Cape Town customers, exposing them to loadshedding only from Stage 5 onwards.
“We have also entered into agreements with the City of Cape Town to curtail supply to our large industrial assets which have reduced their output – this means they will not experience loadshedding at all, or indeed much less of it,” said Rossi.
The group has concluded a R230m sustainability-linked bond with Standard Bank that benefits landlords through innovated real estate finance structures, based on sustainability initiatives and key performance indicators.
“If we take our environmental, social and governance (ESG) policy and investment strategy, and throw in Government’s recent solar tax incentives on new installations, into the mix plus the strength of our Western Cape municipalities; all of this contributes towards bolstering the Spear investment case, business continuity and bodes well for sustainable output and production across the region, adding to consumer or investor confidence,” said Rossi.