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South Africa to Join Nuclear Revolution

SA Flag 15 August 07
The government of South Africa yesterday launched its draft policy on nuclear energy, upon which it hopes to create a new nuclear power generation industry.

The Department of Mineral and Energy has plans to promote the recycling of spent nuclear fuel along with plans to rebuild South Africa’s uranium enrichment capacity, which was dismantled some time ago. This represents a turn around in political thinking for South Africa but it makes sense as South Africa is rich in uranium and the same fundamental reasons for developing nuclear power apply to them as much as they do to other countries that are coming to the same conclusion.

This is a draft document but has the approval of the cabinet and is a logical development based on President Thabo Mbeki’s commitment in his ‘State of the Nation’ address to accelerate work that would clear the path for South Africa to increase its reliance on nuclear and renewable energy.

President Thabo Mbeki
President Thabo Mbeki

To quote the Department’s Chief Director, Tseliso Maqubela, who said, “There is no way we can have a primary energy source such as uranium which we don’t use fully,”

The intention is to increase South Africa’s power supply from nuclear fuel to 15% by 2025 to 2030, which would be more than double the current supply of around 6%. At the moment coal fuels 88% of power supply and the aim is to reduce their dependence on coal to around 70%.

For those interested in mining Tseliso Maqubela has said that the government are prepared to look at providing incentives, which would encourage mining, and be of a benefit locally.

Sounds to us like another convert to the nuclear cause.

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