Energy dept rejects plan to moor floating gas-fired plant near Richards Bay

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The Richards Bay port.
The Richards Bay port.
Photo: Transnet Port Terminals

The Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment has turned down an application to moor a floating, gas-fired power plant in the Richards Bay port.

Anchor Energy’s Nseleni power plant would have had the capability to produce 6 500 megawatts of electricity, according to Groundwork, an environmental activist organisation.

"The proposed project is predicted to have a high negative impact on the estuarine environment," the department said in its findings, sent to Bloomberg on Thursday. "The department does not support any development in a high biodiversity sensitive area."

The decision follows an earlier ruling that Karpowership could not moor floating power plants at Richards Bay, Mossel Bay and Saldanha Bay. The Turkish company appealed the ruling and is awaiting a decision.

South Africa, which suffers from intermittent power shortages, is seeking to boost electricity generation.

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