The construction of the Darling Wind Farm north west of Darling in the Western Cape is now underway following an official sod-turning ceremony in mid-February. The farm is a project of the Central Energy Fund, the Development Bank of Southern Africa, Darling Independent Power Producer and the South African and Danish governments and is part of efforts by Cape Town city council to get ten per cent of its energy from renewable sources by 2020. If all goes to plan the facility should be operational by the middle of 2007 and is expected to generate 13.2 GWh of electricity per year. The energy generated at the farm will be available to consumers for 25c more per unit than the normal cost of electricity; and although it will not be sufficient to offset the serious power shortages in the region it could pave the way for other alternative energy-generating projects in future. The Western Cape is a perfect location for generating wind power as its prevailing winds come from two directions and tend to blow during peak electricity consumption periods.
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