Release Of IRP Imminent: Minister

South Africa’s Integrated Resource Plan (IRP), which will set out South Africa’s future energy mix, would be “concluded imminently”, Energy Minister Jeff Radebe said on Tuesday.

Speaking at African Utility Week taking place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre, Radebe said the IRP was still the subject of engagement with government’s social partners at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac).

“Cabinet approval for the IRP for South AFrica will define a tangible plan for energy security that also enables the participation of independent power producers side by side with Eskom,” Radebe told delegates.

Radebe said it was would cost the South African economy over R1 trillion to increase power capacity by 2030, to pay for among others, the building of power plants and putting in place additional transmission and distribution infrastructure.

The minister noted while South Africa was moving away from its dependence on coal fired power stations to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, this would be done in a way that did not impact negatively on jobs and local economies. 

South Africa’s coal deposits would also not be left to lie dormant.

“Carbon capture and storage, underground goad gasification, coal to liquids and other clean coal technologies are critical considerations that will enable us to continue using our coal resources in an environmentally responsible way,” said Radebe.

African Utility Week 2019, brings together thousands of delegates in the power sector from around the world to exchange ideas and do business. -Businesslive