ENERGY: NIASA Affirms That Nuclear is Still the Most Viable Option in Support Of the NDP
Recent Gauteng Business News
The Nuclear Industry Association of South Africa (NIASA) has affirmed that Nuclear is the still most viable option in order to stimulate the economy in the coming years. The following assertions and statements were presented at the first Department of Energy, IRP 2015 – 2030, Public Hearings.
Knox Msebenzi, Managing Director of NIASA noted that the organization has reviewed the latest drafts of the IEP and IRP and found several serious shortcomings, including and most importantly that externality costs were not taken into account for numerous technologies. This was communicated to the Externalities sub-committee of the IEP Update process.
Msebenzi added, ‘We have noted that several well-known academics and institutions have claimed that it will be more affordable for South Africa (SA) to replace the said new nuclear capacity with a mixture of PV-solar panels, wind turbines and gas turbines. However, Eskom claimed that the wind and PV-solar power that DOE forces Eskom to buy through the REIPPP is largely unusable, as it arrives at the wrong time of day.’
Externality costs are reasonably well allocated in IEP, except for methane discharges of imported LNG. . It is our view that externality costs are badly allocated in the IRP, which skewed the process in favour of new coal and in favour of imported LNG to support the intermittency of renewables. NIASA has recommended a review of this oversight.
NIASA would further like to agree and endorse the statement by National Treasury’s that the viability and affordability of nuclear be investigated further with more detail, research and accuracy with a balanced panel of experts providing insights and views.
“As NIASA we have long maintained the view that conversation and the narrative around the new nuclear build has been tainted with inaccuracies and fears that are based on hearsay and a blatant refusal by the anti-nuclear groups and researchers to have a balanced and representative view of South Africa’s required energy mix.”
“We believe a comprehensive study into nuclear and a balanced representation of South Africa’s required energy mix will in fact show that a nuclear programme will have the largest multiplier effect when it comes to the contribution to the economy and is key to addressing our country’s National Development Plan objectives,” says Msebenzi.
In conclusion, NIASA’s reiterates that, ‘nuclear energy is the most viable option to meet the country’s National Development Plan in terms of localization and stimulating economic development. The organisation applauds the principle adopted by Treasury that the programme be rolled out at a scale and pace that is good for the country, not putting the economy at risk.
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