South Africa: First commercially viable biogas project kicks off at BMW plant

By Published On: 24 March, 2022Categories: News


BMW South Africa’s Rosslyn plant in Pretoria — where the car manufacturer’s 3 Series is built — has made a partial switch to renewables.

According to the German automaker, 25-30% of the Rosslyn facility’s electricity requirements will now be generated from renewable sources.

The biogas plant in Bronkhorstspruit is located on the premises of one of South Africa’s larger feedlots and an agricultural stronghold in Gauteng. The location provides the project with proximity to key fuel supplies, grid access, and sufficient water supplied by storm-water collection dams, with the City of Tshwane also supplying waste to the project.

At the Bronkhorstspruit biogas plant, about 40,000 tons of cattle manure and a further 20,000 tons of mixed organic waste per year is fed into two anaerobic digesters that produce the biogas feedstock for a combined heat and power application.

Tim Abbott, managing director of BMW Group South Africa, has confirmed that there is a plan to transition the company’s production facilities to be powered by 100% renewable sources by 2020. “We have increased the share of renewable energy as a percentage of total power consumed by the BMW Group to an impressive 51% in 2014. Our vision is to draw 100% of our energy requirements from renewable sources”, says Abbott.