Energy plan assumptions on nuclear build out in New Year

Stressing that the final integrated energy plan (IEP) from the department of energy (DOE) will be subject to public scrutiny and comment, energy minister Dipuo Peters, in a written reply to parliamentary questioning, confirmed that her department will shortly be producing the first set of energy modelling assumptions involving nuclear energy planning for the country and these could be out in the New Year.

DOE have told Parliament seperately, however, that the final draft of the whole IEP will not be in the cabinet’s hands before the middle of 2013, the department having now completed a full round of presentations to interested portfolio committees in Parliament on the background and preliminary work to be undertaken on the IEP.   The IEP is not to be confused with the integrated resources plan (IRP) which will specifically study the individual energy resources themselves.

There will be extensive consultation before any matter on the IEP is even tabled in cabinet for approval, the minister noted.    Demand forecasts have also been finalised for some time, she said, and last month “quality checks on the data had been carried out on the data supplied.”

The minister also indicated that the final full draft document with all test cases incorporated with a plan might not be in the hands of cabinet before mid-2013.  As such it will be in draft form to be published for stakeholder comment.

Clearly nuclear energy is deeply involved in the IEP since the cabinet, at its latest meeting in Pretoria, has now agreed to the implementation of the nuclear build programme in time its seems for the IEP report. Working models will look at various plans with and without various resources, one of the critical resources being the nuclear issue.

A strategy to involve stakeholders in regard to nuclear build is also being worked out, cabinet says.    Kgalema Motlanthe, who heads up the national nuclear energy executive coordination committee, held the first meeting of this body in August and communication has been ongoing.

Eskom has also been endorsed by the cabinet as the owner-operator in terms of the nuclear energy policy

Cabinet has now approved the second version of the draft national energy efficiency strategy, following the 1998 White Paper, published for public comment some time ago.

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