‘Coal 3’ Dangerously Irresponsible

Fire-up investment in renewable energy instead

Feature story - August 23, 2013
Yesterday the South African government agreed to “act immediately” on steps toward the procurement of what it calls ‘Coal 3’ – yet another mega coal-fired power station.

"Greenpeace Africa condemns the irresponsible move to start building a third mega coal-fired power station, which puts all South Africans at risk. Both Medupi and Kusile have failed to deliver electricity either on time, or on budget at a huge cost to all South Africans," said Melita Steele, climate and energy campaigner for Greenpeace Africa.

If the building of coal 3 goes ahead, the location for the power plant is most likely to be in the very water-scarce Waterberg area where troubled Medupi is currently being constructed.

"A third mega coal-fired power station in one of the most water-scarce areas of South Africa [1] will push the price of electricity up as coal prices rise, lock the country into a coal-addiction for the foreseeable future and push the country much closer to a water and climate crisis," continued Steele.

"South Africans simply can't afford to continue to pay the price for ongoing investments in coal power stations, and Greenpeace urges cabinet to rethink this decision and push for increased renewable energy investments instead.”

The renewable energy industry offers huge opportunities for the South African economy as a massive job creator, and can reignite economic growth far better than further investments in the troubled coal sector ever could.