30/03/2017 08:06 SAST | Updated 30/03/2017 08:09 SAST

Nuclear Plant Could Be Built In Mpumalanga

More details about Eskom's nuclear build programme emerged at a conference this week.

REUTERS/Mike Hutchings

Emalahleni in Mpumalanga could be the site of a new nuclear power plant if Eskom's plans to ahead as planned, the power utility's chief nuclear officer, Dave Nicholls, told a conference on Wednesday.

According to Business Day, Nicholls made the remarks at the Nuclear Africa conference in Centurion this week. He reportedly said that the first four units of the new nuclear build programme would be at Thyspunt, while another unit would probably be built at Duynefontein in the Western Cape, near the Koeberg power station.

KwaZulu-Natal would be the next priority for Eskom, he reportedly said, because the province relied on the Emalahleni fleet. Four power stations in Emalahleni are being decommissioned to accommodate the nuclear fleet, according to a report on Moneyweb.

Business Day reported that no detailed work had been done on the KwaZulu-Natal site, and that Nicholls hoped the department of Environmental Affairs would approve Eskom's plans for Thuyspunt by June.

Nicholls reportedly said it was hoped that a single vendor would be selected to avoid technical problems or delays caused by mismatching technologies. He reportedly said the request for information was issued in December, and it was hoped that a contract would be signed by 2018/19.