An investigation into the use for the Athlone Power Station is expected to take place. Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency (ANA)
An investigation into the use for the Athlone Power Station is expected to take place. Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency (ANA)

City of Cape Town looking at options to develop Athlone Power Station

By Shakirah Thebus Time of article published Aug 12, 2021

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Cape Town - The City of Cape Town is exploring the development potential of the Athlone Power Station for energy and/or industrial use.

Mayco member for Energy and Climate Change, Phindile Maxiti, said the site was considered unsuitable for mixed use residential purposes, so the emphasis had shifted to looking at uses in line with its existing permit.

“Support from the council is being sought to investigate the development potential of the Athlone Power Station for non-residential uses, including for energy and/or industrial use, particularly in light of the emerging energy crisis and the availability of new sustainable technology options, and in the interest of all stakeholders,” said Maxiti.

An investigation by the Energy and Climate Change Directorate into the use of the site, is set to follow.

The Athlone Power Station was decommissioned in 2003 as it was no longer economically viable, said Maxiti.

“Since the decommissioning of the site in 2003, the energy landscape has changed dramatically. Global environmental concerns, prompted by a greater understanding of the harmful effects of carbon emissions that lead to climate change, precipitated an energy crisis of national importance, prompting the need for urgent reform including deregulation, and greater private sector participation such as the introduction of the Independent Power Producer Renewables Programme,” said Maxiti.

The costs have yet to be determined.

Meanwhile, Finance and Economic Opportunities MEC David Maynier said the department was collaborating with the City and welcomed its announcement of a Request For Information (RFI) for funding and financing instrument solutions for its Renewable Energy Programme.

“This RFI is aimed at development banks and multilateral development funds for projects that the City will own and operate, located on City-owned land and buildings (typically within the City distribution grid), ranging in size from less than 1MW to 100MW per project, with the potential to explore larger-scale projects connected to Eskom’s network.”

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Cape Argus

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