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MTN Powers Up with Solar


To reduce reliance on South Africa’s strained power grid, MTN has undertaken a major solar energy project at its Johannesburg headquarters. With over 5,400 solar panels now active, MTN is on track to make its head office 40% less dependent on the municipal grid by end of February.

The telecom provider’s phased approach aims to inject a total of 1,800kW into the office’s microgrid. This will significantly curb the impact of widespread power blackouts, known as “load shedding,” that have plagued South Africa in recent years. With battery storage facilities slated for completion by March, MTN is leading the charge to keep operations running amidst the country’s energy crisis.

The move aligns with MTN’s commitment to get its base stations completely off grid and invest over $84 million to mitigate blackouts. Last year, load shedding cost the company $38 million in losses. Now MTN is turning to the sun to safeguard connectivity for millions of subscribers.

By becoming an Independent Power Producer (IPP) and deploying various renewable technologies, MTN seeks to bolster energy security while reducing environmental impact.

The Johannesburg Solar Park, equipped with 4.9MW of solar PV, is expected to save 9.3 million kWh per year. It will also cut CO2 emissions by 9,672 tons annually, supporting MTN’s goal to reach net zero emissions by 2040.

An upcoming Island Mode Project will integrate solar, battery storage, gas, and diesel into a microgrid that can disconnect from the main grid during outages. Slated for an April completion, the microgrid exemplifies MTN’s innovative approach to overcoming energy hurdles.

Beyond headquarters operations, MTN has launched a nationwide program to protect its network infrastructure against blackouts and theft. From solar panels at base stations to anti-tampering solutions, MTN is future-proofing its network while empowering communities through uninterrupted connectivity.

With resilience and sustainability as driving forces, MTN’s investments reflect its commitment to leading South Africa’s clean energy transition. As an emerging IPP, MTN is shining a light on the promise of renewables to transform businesses and uplift citizens across the region. Its solar flagship projects set an ambitious benchmark for companies seeking energy autonomy in the face of adversity.



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