SA to launch nuclear power tenders

Presidency spokesperson Mac Maharaj says nuclear remains an integral part of the energy mix.

Presidential spokesperson Mac Mahara. Picture: Christa van der Walt/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - South Africa will launch a tender process to build new nuclear power plants, the Presidency said on Wednesday.

This as Eskom battles to keep the lights on with demand for electricity threatening to outstrip supply.

It says presentations of what other countries can offer South Africa in terms of nuclear technology has been concluded.

South Africa aims to add 9,600 megawatts to the grid, equal to nearly a quarter of the current capacity.

Presidency spokesperson Mac Maharaj says government will now design and launch a procurement process.

"Government remains committed to ensuring energy security for the country through the rollout of new nuclear-built programmes as an integral part of the energy mix."

Eskom earlier said all four generators which stopped working on Tuesday were fixed.

The parastatal however said the risk for load shedding remained high.

While Eskom remains confident the lights will stay on over Christmas, the latest threat of load shedding increases the risk of blackouts on 25 December.

The utility has been battling with limited generating capacity, problems at its power stations and a shortage of diesel supplies.