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Mantashe to make it possible for govt to procure more power

He’s told Parliament that he’s finalised ministerial determinations in terms of Section 34 of the Electricity Regulation Act and that these are now with energy regulator, the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa).

FILE: Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Gwede Mantashe. Picture: Nthakoana Ngatane/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe on Wednesday moved on making it possible for the government to procure more power to ease pressure on the grid.

He’s told Parliament that he finalised ministerial determinations in terms of Section 34 of the Electricity Regulation Act and that these were now with the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa).

The Section 34 process gives effect to the country’s electricity roadmap, the Integrated Resource Plan of 2019.

Mantashe was speaking during the second day of debate on the President’s State of the Nation Address (Sona).

“Section 34 determinations to implement the IRP2019 are finalised and await the concurrence of Nersa. This will also enable the opening of bid windows from renewable energy power procurement and support further investment in the sector.”

Mantashe said his department was assessing responses to its request for information in December for projects that could deliver power to the grid in the least possible time.

“We received 481 responses, which include energy supply options and demand-side management options from gas, liquid fuel, coal, renewables, storage and nuclear. Preliminary analysis is that some proposals can bring power to the grid in less than 24 months.”

Mantashe said an unreliable energy supply was the biggest threat to economic growth, job creation and development.