Namibia’s national power utility is planning an 800 MW coal-fired power plant to supply a growing demand for electricity from uranium mines, reports said Wednesday.
A report from a consultant Ninham Shand Consulting Services, hired by the power utility to carry out a feasibility study for the envisaged power plant, said the coal-fired 800 MW plant would supply power to the booming uranium sector.
“The west coast of Namibia is experiencing significant economic growth in the Erongo region, mainly as a result of industrial developments related to uranium exploration and mining,” Ninham Shandi, a South Africa-based consultant firm, said.
The plant will have a coal stock yard, ash-disposal facility and transport system, to deliver coal and potentially seawater to and from the plant.
An 800 megawatt facility would consume as much as 2.4 million metric tonnes of coal annually, the report said.
Namibia is Africa’s top uranium producer, followed by Niger and South Africa in third place.
A biting power shortage has, however, raised fears that some mining projects could be put on hold.
Namibia imports more than 60 per cent of its electricity requirements from South Africa, Zimbabwe and Zambia, countries which have been forced to resort to energy cutbacks because of rising demand and stagnant generation capacity.
The national power utility, Nampower, is investing US$ 1.2 billion over the coming five years to expand electricity generation capacity.
Nampower also plans to build a 100 MW multi-fuelled emergency generation facility at the coal-fired power plant site or in the vicinity of the existing Paratus power plant, Ninham Shand said. Panapress .