‘Ramaphosa re-committed to destroy coal industry in SA’- EFF

November 9, 2022 0 By Cypher9ja

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has accused President Cyril Ramaphosa of “recommitting himself to destroy the coal industry in South Africa”.

The red berets were reacting to Ramaphosa’s talk at the COP27 UN climate summit in Egypt on Tuesday.

During his speech, Ramaphosa said South Africa is scaling up investment in renewable energy and are on a course to “retire a number of aging coal fired power stations.”

Stage 15 load shedding

However, this might exacerbate load shedding which was echoed by Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter when he outlined the ailing parastatals vision for a just energy transition at the Africa Renewables Investment Summit, held in Cape Town earlier this year.

De Ruyter said meeting air quality standards would warrant Eskom decommissioning as much as 16GW of its coal-fired power stations immediately, which would exacerbate load shedding to unprecedented stages.

Eskom’s modelling showed that the decommission of plants could lead to Stage 15 load shedding.

Its coal-fired power stations will have to be decommissioned when they reach the end of their life – some of which will be within the next 15 years.

ALSO READ: COP27: ‘Humanity on highway to climate hell’ – Guterres

Eskom spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha told The Citizen de Ruyter was referring to Eskom’s current power stations that the environmental authorities want closed down for not meeting the air quality limitations.

“It’s the 16 000MW of infrastructure that exceeds the emissions limits that Eskom appealed last year. He said if the department had its way and forced Eskom to close those, then we’d have that kind of load shedding.”

De Ruyter said mechanical equipment had a finite lifespan.

“If we do nothing, it will precipitate significant job losses in the coal value chain,” De Ruyter said.

Ramaphosa’s suicidal comments

The EFF said it distances itself and condemns the “nonsensical and suicidal” commitments made by Ramaphosa at Cop 27.

“Following on his surrender to environmental imperialism at the COP26 in Scotland 2021, Ramaphosa re-emphasised the destruction of coal-mining of the communities under the guise of an unverifiable Just Transition to renewable energy.”

“The so-called Just Transition, refers to a transition to renewable energy and sustainable means of production, while protecting the social-economic rights and livelihoods of those in the labour sector who will be impacted by the transition which involves job losses,” the EFF said.

Massive debt

The EFF said Ramaphosa is throwing South Africa into massive debt, by pleading for concessional loans in order to “create unemployment and collapse our economy.”

“It is an objective fact that over 80% of South Africa’s electricity generation is dependent on coal, while there are numerous avenues of clean coal energy generation methods that South Africa could explore.”

“The decommissioning of coal power stations in South Africa is illogical and premature. It is illogical because billions have been spent on building the Kusile and Medupi power stations for years, yet now they will not be used, and it is premature because South Africa is not ready in terms of renewable energy alternatives,” the party said.

Renewable energy an experiment

The EFF added that renewable energy as the primary source of energy is “an experiment.”

“That experiment must begin in the West which has damaged the climate for centuries, not in Africa. The EFF wants to assure the United Kingdom, France, the United States of America and the rest of the hypocrites of the West, that their puppet Ramaphosa will not have the power to implement their nonsensical resolutions.”

Ramaphosa won’t be in power

“By the year 2024, Cyril Ramaphosa will no longer be in power to implement the genocidal decision to destroy the South African coal mining sector, and the EFF will ensure that none of the loans provided to destroy our coal sector are repaid,” it said.

The EFF said South Africa should adopt a comprehensive energy policy and partnerships which must necessarily consider options of clean coal technologies, partnerships for nuclear and maximal usage of hydrogen, including through usage of power ships.

ALSO READ: ‘The Komati Project’ gets $497m renewable energy boost