Time to fast-track Medupi | Fin24

Time to fast-track Medupi

Jun 18 2014 06:00


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Cape Town - As Eskom battles to keep the lights on, progress at the Medupi power station must accelerated, said President Jacob Zuma in his State of the Nation Address on Tuesday night.

Zuma said the country's energy sector needs "radical transformation" to develop a sustainable energy mix that comprises coal, solar, wind, hydro, gas and nuclear energy.

"We need to respond decisively to the country’s energy constraints in order to create a conducive environment for growth."

"Progress at Medupi power station construction site will be accelerated," he said.

He added that plans on the financing of the next large coal fired power station, Coal 3, will be speeded up so that the procurement process can commence.

Zuma announced that a sub-committee will be formed to focus on the energy sector.

"The sub-committee will also ensure that Eskom receives the support it requires to fulfil its mandate and that it remains focused on achieving its goals and targets."
Zuma also touched on developing nuclear power and exploiting shale gas reserves.

"Work needs to be done at a technical level on all forms of energy, especially nuclear energy and shale gas, with regards to funding, safety, exploitation and local manufacture of components.

"Nuclear has the possibility of generating well over 9 000 MW, while shale gas is recognised as a game-changer for our economy."

Just ahead of Zuma's address, Eskom announced that it entered Stage 1 of load shedding, after warning of extremely tight power supply.

The parastal warned that it anticipates a severe winter as demand for electricity usually mounts during temperatures drop.

 - Fin24



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