Eskom to meet unions over phasing out of coal power stations

The power utility will be phasing out the Grootvlei, Kriel, Camden, Hendrina and Komati power stations in Mpumalanga over the next five years.

FILE: Eskom's Hendrina power station in Mpumalanga. Picture: eskom.co.za

CAPE TOWN - Eskom is planning to meet with trade unions this week to discuss the planned phasing out of five coal power stations in Mpumalanga.

Unions are up in arms claiming that they were not consulted over the move.

Eskom's Khulu Phasiwe says this is necessary to accommodate independent renewable power producers.

“The plan from government is to see what’s possible and we’ll see what transpires. We will make sure we mitigate against thousands of job losses.”

During his State of the Nation Address in February, President Jacob Zuma said government was committed to the Independent Power Procurement Programme.

The president said the programme would be expanded to other sources, including coal and gas, in addition to renewable energy sources.

The power utility will be phasing out the Grootvlei, Kriel, Camden, Hendrina and Komati power stations in Mpumalanga over the next five years.

Some of the coal power stations employ up to 1,000 people.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)