In response to the Coal Transportation Forum’s action in Tshwane

March 2nd, 2017, Published in Articles: EE Publishers, Articles: Energize, Featured: Energize


The South African Renewable Energy Council (SAREC) has issued a statement in response to the Coal Transportation Forum’s (CTF’s) press notice, relating to the reasons behind their industrial action in Tshwane recently. SAREC believes that the statement contains a number of factual errors which need correcting.

Brenda Martin, SAREC

South Africa, along with the rest of the world, is transitioning from coal to other energy sources, be it renewable energy, gas or even nuclear.  This is a challenge and reality being faced by countries around the world. The renewable energy sector globally has shown itself to be even more successful at job creation than the coal or nuclear industry.

SAREC is concerned about who has been providing CTF with its information, particularly in the light of statements by the acting CEO of Eskom, Matshela Koko’s statements in social media parroting the same “facts” during the drivers’ protest action.

The council believes it is important that people enter into informed debates on the fact of the matter and  is open to engage with the leadership of CTF to discuss the matter further.

In direct response to the CTF’s statement, SAREC wishes to point out the following:

  • Table 11 of the 2017 Budget Review shows that the contingent from IPPs will be R104-billion rather than the R700-billion indicated in CTF’s statement. At the same time, Eskom’s contingent liability will have risen to R284-billion.
  • The draft update of the IRP, published by DoE in November 2016, shows that the Komati, Hendrina, Arnot, Camden and Grootvlei power stations are due for decommissioning by 2030. In fact, Eskom plans to decommission some 27,5 GW of coal-fired plant by 2040 which will result in a total of 12 coal-fired power stations being closed by that time. Eskom has performed a life extension exercise to confirm the feasibility of repowering these stations, which has been shown to be too expensive.
  • The construction of the Medupi and Kusile coal-fired power stations, which would replace a number of these old stations, will result in a reduction in Eskom’s coal procurement by some 30- million t of coal per annum.
  • A reduction in coal consumption of up to 10-million t by 2021 is part of the government’s policy and is consistent with South Africa’s climate change commitment made in December 2015 at the COP21 meeting in Paris. Eskom’s ambition to procure and own 9,6 GW of nuclear-power generating plant by 2030, as anticipated in the 2010 IRP, and which is consistent with the utility’s support for the “Carbon Budget / Nuclear” scenario of the IRP, will also result in a lower demand for coal.

Contact Brenda Martin, SAREC, Tel 011 214-0660,