How much renewable power you can build in South Africa for R451 billion - the cost of Medupi and Kusile

Jan

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How much renewable power South Africa can build for the cost of Medupi and Kusile

Around 17,000MW of renewable energy capacity can be built for the same cost as Eskom’s troubled Medupi and Kusile coal power stations, estimates from energy expert Chris Yelland have shown.

The two 4,800MW power stations – which are critical to meeting South Africa’s increasing electricity demand – have seen significant delays over the past decade due to corrupt contracts and design defects.

Originally scheduled for completion in 2015 at a projected cost of R163.2 billion, their construction costs ballooned to more than R451 billion by 2019, excluding the interest incurred on the debt taken out to build them.

This also does not include the actual cost of running each of their generating units.
 

Gordon_R

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That's all true and already known, but kinda irrelevant, since we are already stuck with two white elephants and a very large debt. It's not an either/or situation, we have few choices...
 

Lupus

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17 000MW of renewables would give us great amounts of it, when the resource is available, not when needed during the evenings at peak. Also you'd get about maybe 12 000MW average out of that.
 

Kawak

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Does his costs also include storage?
I'm guessing yes, it doesn't cost that much to buy PV right now, I'm obviously not factoring in Cadre gravey train and related expenses.

PV is now around R700 per KW, batteries are about R5000 per KW, these are small scale prices for home, pretty sure it's much cheaper when taken at scale.
 

ToxicBunny

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17 000MW of renewables would give us great amounts of it, when the resource is available, not when needed during the evenings at peak. Also you'd get about maybe 12 000MW average out of that.

He actually factors it much lower in the article...

25% - 40%..

But there is no indication about storage being built in or not.
 

ToxicBunny

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So at 40% it would be less then the 2 power stations.

Yeah, but then he also does a bit of a calc based on the EAF of Unit 3 which has apparently undergone the required modifications.. and they come out almost even at the end of the day.
 

IdlePhaedrus

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Does his costs also include storage?

More then likely not

I reckon this is fair given that interest costs for Medupi and Kusile aren't taken into account either, neither are the supply costs or the carbon tax costs. Or, probably decommissioning / cleanup costs.

In fact if these costs were taken into account vs renewable storage costs, I think it would be reasonably fair to say former would largely outweigh the latter.

Further the cost would not largely be borne by the fiscus (tax payer money).

These are my thoughts anyway. However from what I have read this would largely be a correct assumption.
 

richjdavies

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This is like saying an Uber cheaper than buying a car.

Except this particular Uber is more expensive than buying the car, and turned up 5 years late, and keeps.breaking down!

Solar for the win :)

Albeit the car you buy, only works in the day!
 

Chris.Geerdts

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Yelland's exercise is useful to illustrate. As disgustingly expensive as these two stations were, they can still be put to good use (if they are every properly commissioned) with the current coal fleet averaging over 40 years old and needing massive investments to refurbish and to improve their emission compliance.

Still, the main focus should be on accelerating the independent renewable builds, expediting approvals on the 100MW private plants and encouraging rooftop contributions to the grid.
 

Gordon_R

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Useful illustrated article on aligning renewable capacity profiles, and enhancing future grid infrastructure:
The present penetration of wind and solar PV energy represents less than 10% of the energy on the South African grid. This is relatively easily managed. When penetration rises to 30% or more by 2030, grid management becomes much more complex, requiring sophisticated data-rich decision-support systems. This may, for example, require the SO to predict how much renewable energy will be generated in the hours and days ahead in order to make decisions on which non-renewable power plants to start and stop to ensure the grid meets demand across all regions on a 24/7 basis.
Oped-Swilling-RenewablesTW-inset-1.png

Oped-Swilling-RenewablesTW-inset-3.png

Oped-Swilling-RenewablesTW-inset-5-1.png
 
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JohnStarr

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I read that article with a high degree of sadness. How do people allow greed to win over the people? And how stupid do you have to be to continue voting for this lot ruining the country?
 

RVQ

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I think any project that was planned in the previous decade would have always been coal, and the scale of the Zupta destruction was in its infancy, the true difference should have been when Cyril came to power he should have immediately raised the self generation threshold, allowed municipalites in good standing to source power from IPPs and aggressively opened Eskom generation to IPPs with a focus on decommissioning Eskoms aging coal fleet, but nope the focus remained on how the ANC cadres could continue feeding of tax money
 

Bonywasawarrioraway

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17 000MW of renewables would give us great amounts of it, when the resource is available, not when needed during the evenings at peak. Also you'd get about maybe 12 000MW average out of that.
This is perfectly true. However having a massive surplus allows one to use stored energy (not sure of the nomenclature) projects where water is pumped to an elevated storage facility sothat during periods pf peak need (read night time in your scenario) it can be released to flow back down through turbines to produce hydroelectricity. We already have some of these in SA with scope for many more.
 

Happy Days

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To date, many of the six units at each power station must still be completed or undergo modifications to enter full commercial operation.
Huh? Is this Zuma's counting at work?
 
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