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Struik Travel & Heritage

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What Does Robben Island’s Renewable Energy Strategy Entail?

Robben IslandThe Department of Tourism announced earlier this year that Robben Island will soon operate completely on solar energy.

Anine Vermeulen wrote, in an article for Engineering News, that the initiative is part of the Department of Tourism’s three-year plan to introduce renewable-energy technology to key tourism destinations in the country. The plan is currently in the pilot phase.

Vermeulen spoke to the leader of the Tourism Incentive Programme, Bernhard Meyer, about what the pilot programme on Robben Island entails and how the energy retrofitment programme will work. Meyer also explains the procedure of the bidding process for the renewable-energy installations and what kind of skills they require to get the project started.

What would Nelson Mandela say about the island’s renewable energy strategy? For more insight on Madiba’s time spent in prison, read Robben Island: Mandela’s prison and place of inspiration by Charlene Smith.

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Bidding Process

Meyer adds that there will be a bidding process for the manufacturing and installation of renewables, and government standard procedures will be followed.

A request for information for local renewables manufacturers was put out in July.

“We want to embark on a procurement process for the pilot phase. We don’t have the technical expertise and are looking for technical advisers,” he says.

He notes that there is a strong emphasis on local content and the green economy with regard to this project.

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