National Nuclear Regulator public hearings on Nuclear Installation Site Licence application for Thyspunt Site

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25 November 2021

The National Nuclear Regulator (NNR) public hearings for the Nuclear Installation Site Licence application made by Eskom Holdings SOC Limited for the Thyspunt took place on 23 and 24 November 2021. These hearings are a tool for the NNR Board to gain inputs and insights from members of the public on issues relating to health, safety and environment in relation to a nuclear installation licence application. This is done in accordance with section 21 of the National Nuclear Regulator Act, Act No.47 of 1999.

The South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) is one of the interested parties for the proposed Nuclear Installation Site Licence. The public hearing process promotes transparency and allows for robust debate on the socio-economic impact of a new nuclear installation in South Africa. Gathering all views from the participants allows for a reaching a fair and informed decision.

Mr Loyiso Tyabashe, Necsa Group Chief Executive Officer highlighted nuclear installation advantages as follows: “Nuclear installations globally and as demonstrated by Koeberg domestically, guarantee for security of supply, offering the least cost of supply and provide for stable employment over its life time”. The development and construction of a nuclear

installation occurs over a period of ten years contributing to a sustainable local industry for diversity supply of raw materials. Nuclear energy contributes to minimisation of emissions due to its limited greenhouse gases releases.

Koeberg nuclear power station is currently the only one on the entire African continent and it has been operating efficiently since it was commissioned in 1985. Necsa Board Chairperson, Mr David Nicholls remarked based on a specific scenario: “If one builds a 2 x 1200MW plant at a total project cost estimate of R200bn then about 20% of that will be physically spent in the area, or about R40bn”.

Necsa therefore has confidence about nuclear power station capabilities. The Eastern Cape is one of the provinces with mostly rural areas with highest poverty and unemployment rate. 

The Eastern Cape is one of the least contributing province to the national GDP and this project will contribute towards revitalising the economy. It is for this reason that we believe that Nuclear Installation at Thyspunt site will be of good benefit to the surrounding communities. The proposed nuclear station is about 4000MW capacity which will cover a vast area.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

GM: Corporate Communication & Stakeholder Relations: Ms Nikelwa Tengimfene Cell: 0825745495
E-mail: nikelwa.tengimfene@necsa.co.za

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