Legal Brief, 15 January, 2019
Energy: Coal forum sues to have IPPs set aside
Eskom’s renewable energy drive is a financial disaster for consumers and an economic disaster for the country, according to papers before the Gauteng High Court (Pretoria). Moneyweb reports that the Coal Transporters Forum is asking the court to have dozens of power purchase agreements (PPAs) signed with independent power producers (IPPs) set aside on the grounds that the National Energy Regulator of SA (Nersa) authorised them without proper public consultation.‘Government is providing guarantees to the IPPs to destroy jobs in the mining sector,’ said the Forum, which noted that the economic cost of the renewable energy programme will mean that Eskom will be forced to shut down at least five coal-fired power stations. In addition, one m i l l i o n permanent jobs will be lost and 17 towns in three provinces reliant on coal mining will become ghost towns. Many more thousands of workers involved in coal transportation will be retrenched, the forum believes. In its answering affidavit, Nersa conceded that it did not allow for a public participation process, but followed the then Minister of Energy’s decision to procure renewable energy.