Protesters dump coal at Eskom

2011-06-27 10:56

Greenpeace activists dumped three trucks of coal in front of the headquarters of Eskom today to protest what they called its lack of commitment to green energy.

Activists from the global environmental organisation paraded in front of the five tonnes of coal blocking one of the main entrances of Eskom’s Joburg headquarters, carrying signs criticising the company for not moving fast enough toward green power sources like wind and solar.

South Africa currently relies on coal for about 90% of its electricity.

“To date, Eskom’s investments in renewable energy are limited to tiny projects of 100 megawatts of wind and 100 megawatts of solar. This illustrates Eskom’s lack of commitment to a sustainable future for South Africa,” said Melita Steele, Greenpeace Africa’s climate and energy campaigner.

“South Africans can no longer continue paying the price for Eskom’s addiction to coal,” she added in a statement.

South Africa has announced plans to scale up renewable energy to 9% of power generation and cut coal’s share to 65% over the next 20 years.

But Eskom has come in for criticism for charging ahead with construction of two massive new coal-fired power stations, the 4 800-megawatt Kusile plant and the 4 788-megawatt Medupi.

Greenpeace has also lashed out at plans to build 9 600 megawatts of new nuclear capacity in the next two decades.

Eskom is under pressure to boost capacity and rejuvenate an aging power grid after electricity shortages led to widespread blackouts in 2008.

But coal-dependent South Africa is also under a microscope from environmental activists as the host of the next major round of UN climate talks, scheduled for November 28 to December 9 in the eastern port city of Durban.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.