‘Back-up generator’ for KZN

2008-02-07 00:00

A peaking power plant — like a giant back-up generator — is to be built at Shakaskraal on the KZN north coast.

Environmental Affairs and Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk has dismissed appeals against authorisation of the plant.

A peaking power plant is generally run only during periods of peak demand, but may also be activated when other power plants are under maintenance, or in circumstances when the security of the grid supply is threatened.

The plant will have open cycle gas turbines fuelled by diesel or paraffin, and will produce 900 MW of electricity, consuming 225 tons of fuel per hour. “A plant of this nature is expected to operate on average only 10% of the time during its life span,” Van Schalkwyk said.

Objections were raised to the site, in an agricultural area. The minister said the plant needs to be at low altitude and close to fuel supplies.

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