[Press release]

The South African government has announced that it has signed a nuclear power co-operation deal with Russia to build up to eight nuclear reactors over the next 16 years.

350Africa.org condemns this move and believes that it will lock the country into debt for generations to come for a power source that the Governments own policy makers say the country does not need.

Both the updated Integrated Resource Plan and the Energy Resource Centre report, the latter commissioned by the National Planning Commission, suggest that government should re-visit nuclear in 2025.

Ferrial Adam, 350 Africa and Arab world Team Leader said ‘’globally countries are moving away from nuclear because it is too expensive and takes at least 10-16 years to build an operational reactor. The question is why is our government not listening to own advisers who are saying we do not need nuclear? Why when we have an abundance of solar and wind energy potential are we choosing this poisonous, costly option?”

Government plans to build up to 9.6GW (8 NPP units) of nuclear power plants based on Russian technology by 2030 and claim that $10 billion will be used in local deals.

Adam concluded, ‘’building nuclear power stations requires skills we do not have in SA, so government is being dishonest when speaking of development and jobs for South Africans. Government also does not seem to be learning from the mistakes made around the arms deal and e-tolls. The secrecy and lack of transparaney around this rushed deal leaves many questions to be answered and the fear that taxpayers money is going to go to waste.”


For further information and to request interviews with Ferrial Adam please contact the 350Africa.org communications team on +27767699302 / adi@350.org.