SA coal power plant needs a re-think, says Hanekom

2013-09-27 09:40
SA need to re-evaluate coal as an energy source, Derek Hanekom has said. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

SA need to re-evaluate coal as an energy source, Derek Hanekom has said. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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.Johannesburg - Science and Technology Minister Derek Hanekom said government would have to rethink its plans for a third mega coal-fired power station, Beeld reported on Friday

Speaking at the opening of a conference on the Water Research Commission (WRC) in Pretoria on Wednesday night, Hanekom said he did not want to offend his colleagues, but plans for the "Coal 3" station needed further thought.

"We will have to look at the relationship between food, energy and water. The negative environmental impact of coal-fired power stations is twofold," he was quoted as saying.

"Huge amounts of water are used when a coal power plant generates electricity. Poisonous gases released when coal-powered energy is generated induce climate change affecting temperatures and rainfall."

Hanekom said these points were relevant in Gauteng, in particular, as it was the country's most densely populated and economically productive province and the demand for food, water and energy was very high.

"Besides, water needs to be pumped uphill [from the Vaal Dam] to Gauteng, which makes it a particularly energy-intensive process."
Read more on:    derek hanekom  |  energy  |  environment

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