SA to reach nuclear ‘point of no return’ by June

South Africa is likely to reach a “point of no return” with regard to a proposed new nuclear energy build programme by June this year, Department of Energy (DoE) director-general Nelisiwe Magubane revealed on Friday.

She was speaking at the South African Nuclear Energy Corporation’s (Necsa’s) Pelindaba site, west of Pretoria, following a meeting with the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA’s) director-general Yukiya Amano, who is in South Africa as part of the agency’s infrastructure assessment mission.

Magubane said the country was progressing through the various milestones endorsed by Cabinet ahead of any nuclear decision and indicated that that government still considered the solution as central to meeting the policy objectives of supply security and reducing the country’s carbon footprint.

South Africa’s current Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for the period 2010 to 2030 envisaged the deployment of 9 600 MW of new nuclear capacity between 2023 and 2030. However, delays to the process meant that the first new nuclear capacity was unlikely to enter the system by 2023 as initially envisaged. Continue reading


Speech by Director-General of the Department of Energy Nelisiwe Magubane, at the second Independent Power Producers (IPP) bidders’ conference for the renewable energy programme

South African Government Information 11 September 2012.

16 Aug 2012

Minister Dipuo Peters,
Ambassadors present,
CEO of Eskom,
IPP bidders,
Distinguished guests,
Members of the media.

Good morning and welcome to the Second Renewable Energy Independent Power Producers (IPP) programme bidder’s conference. The first bidder’s conference was held nearly a year ago in September 2011. As the first of its kind, the 2011 conference was compulsory for all bidders as this was the only way we could introduce the entire IPP bid process to the sector. This 2012 conference, however, is not compulsory there will be no consequences for bidders who do not attend. Irrespective of attendance of this conference, all interested parties will be able to submit bids for the upcoming bid submission dates.

Despite the conference being voluntary, it is our pleasure to host you all and share valuable information regarding future windows. We appreciate your interest in South Africa’s renewable IPP Programme which has attracted continued positive interest from diverse sector audiences internationally. For us the first year was marked by a number of lessons which we would like to share with you. I’m sure you would agree with me when I say, given the size and significance of this programme there are still many more lessons to learn from as we go forward with the implementation of this programme.

I am here today together with the team that worked so hard in evaluating the bids submitted in the first and the second windows. The purpose of the conference today is for the team to assist and bring clarity on RFP issues of concern to new entrants as well as the more experienced developers. Over the last year we have noticed a number of common misinterpretations of the Request for Proposal (RFP) bidders, and the team will attempt to assist you in clarifying these areas.

It is safe to say that even though the documentation was developed by us and we believed that we had provided all the clarity that bidders would need, through our interaction with the bid process and the bidders, we have noted some common mistakes in the submissions received. And to overcome this we take this opportunity to share some tips which should assist you in avoiding those common mistakes.

The lessons or tips that the team will share with you are intended to assist you as you prepare for future bid submissions which must meet the requirements of the RFP. Having read the updated RFP documents, I am sure that you have noticed the changes that have occurred in areas such as local content. These changes and the rationale for their inclusion will be shared with you in detail by the team. Suffice for me to say, it is our view that local content is key to the programme because of its importance in driving manufacturing and employment. Given the current unemployment rates, the country has high expectations from the programme in terms of job creation. It is important that each bid submitted demonstrates value for money as per the provision of the new generation capacity regulations.

Programme Director, I know that there is high competition for grid connection and this competition will be even tighter in the upcoming windows. Capacity availability will continue to be a consideration during the evaluation process. We have invited Eskom to share with you their experience of Window 1 and 2 in terms of grid connection.

Lastly, the approval for window one financial close took longer than anticipated. It is a learning process for the department as well but I believe the approval processes for the subsequent windows will be smoother and on time. I would like to assure you that the department is working hard together with the affected departments to finalize the required approvals for window one financial close. The financial close date will be announced soon and window one preferred bidders should be ready to sign the necessary agreements.

I would like to thank everyone that has contributed for the success of this programme and welcome everyone to this conference on behalf of the department. I hope you will find the conference useful and of assistance as you prepare for the upcoming windows.

I thank you and look forward to a day of fruitful discussion!

Issued by: Department of Energy
16 Aug 2012

Updates on the roll out of large-scale renewable energy in South Africa – 6 September Cape Town seminar

EGI-SA 31 August 2012.

You are invited to attend the following seminar:


Updates on the roll out of large-scale renewable energy in South Africa


Hosted by:          Million Climate Jobs Campaign & AIDC

Date:                  Thursday, 6th September 2012

Time:                  9am – 2pm

Venue:                Vineyard Hotel, Newlands (directions)


We have a great group of guest speakers – each person will have 20 minutes to speak and 20 minutes for follow up questions. And there will be a tea break, and lunch after to help us digest all the information!


Please RSVP so that proper arrangements for catering can be made.  RSVP to Thembeka:  by end of Tuesday, 4th September.




9:00 Registration
9:25 – 9:30 Welcome
9:30 – 10:15 Saliem Fakir – WWF
  • Overview of the roll out of renewables in South Africa
  • What obstacles to RE roll out have been removed; what still remain
10:15 – 11:00 Robert Fischer – Project 90 by 2030
  • Detail on what tenders have been approved in various provinces, including Western Cape
  • Water impacts of different energy technologies
11:00 -11:45 Louise Tait – Energy,Poverty & Development department, Energy Research Centre, UCT
  • Overview of the LED (local economic development) component of the RE tenders and concerns of community impact
11:45 – 12:15 Tea
12:15 – 13:00 Liz McDaid – SAFCEI/Green Connection
  • Jobs update on renewables
  • Update on electricity pricing and NERSA MYPD public hearings
13:00 – 13:45 Hilton Trollip – City of Cape Town
  • Analysis of existing IRP and developing IEP
  • Status of Free Basic Electricity roll out plus link to Free Basic Alternative Energy
13:45 – 14:00 Closing remarks


Like asking the barber if you need a haircut

Business Day Live 24 August 2012.

SOUTH Africa’s six-plant nuclear reactor procurement programme was first announced in August 2006. Since then the country’s own pebble bed programme has collapsed. The Fukushima disaster has transformed nuclear risk appraisal. The fiscus can no longer easily absorb the likely R400bn to R1-trillion bill. And the capital cost of alternative renewables is falling fast. This oil tanker, however, shows no signs of turning around. Ministers are instead promoting an illusion of necessity by ignoring alternative generating technologies. Spurious carbon control commitments and invented deadlines are being used to demand investment now.

It remains unclear how much the programme might cost; the energy director-general estimates “not more than” R750bn. Environmental impacts, safety concerns, implications for the grid, human resource constraints, disaster planning, radioactive waste management, local content guarantees, and other regulatory issues all need to be addressed. The Cabinet has delegated responsibility to a National Nuclear Energy Executive Co-ordination Committee (NNEECC) chaired by Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe. Key ministerial representation on this committee comes from the departments of energy, public enterprises (DPE), science and technology, finance, and trade and industry. Less competent departments — energy and DPE — are vying to control the project…

Ministerial determinations on way to unlock baseload, renewables IPPs

Engineering News 17 August 2012.

Energy Minister Dipuo Peters will issue determinations in the near future to kick-start a baseload independent power producer (IPP) procurement process, as well as extend the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Programme (REIPPP) beyond the 3 725 MW currently being procured for delivery by 2016.

Speaking at a REIPPP bidders conference in Johannesburg, Peters indicated that the determination would be in line with the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity, which was published in March 2011…

DoE to begin closing first renewables projects, but hints to extension beyond Aug

Engineering News 16 August 2012.

The Department of Energy (DoE) announced on Thursday that it expected to begin concluding outstanding financial-closure agreements with the first 28 wind and solar bidders named in December as preferred bidders under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Programme (REIPPP) from the middle of next week, and that it aimed to complete the process by the end of August…

Licences approved for renewable energy bidders

SAAEA | 14 August 2012.

POWER licences had been approved for the successful renewable energy bidders, the National Energy Regulator of SA (Nersa) said yesterday.

Nersa said all 28 preferred bidders in the first round met the criteria, which included technical, financial, economic, regulatory and legal standards.

Last month, Energy Minister Dipuo Peters said it was important that energy sources were affordable because the procured power would be sold to Eskom, which had been tasked by President Jacob Zuma to make electricity affordable.

Out of 53 renewable power bidders, 28 were given the green light by Peters in December last year. Eighteen of these projects included the use of solar photovoltaic technology which would produce 631.53 megawatts, eight would use onshore wind projects providing 633.99MW and two were based on concentrated solar power, generating 150MW. The Department of Energy had set a target of 3 725MW of energy to be sourced from independent, renewable power producers by 2016.

For the second window period, only 19 out of the 79 projects presented were selected as preferred bidders and price accounted for 70 percent of the assessment score…