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Karpowership donates game farm to ease South Africa power approval

Karpowership donates game farm to ease South Africa power approval
A general view of a Karpowership. (Photo: Wikipedia)

Karpowership has agreed to buy and donate a game farm to a provincial wildlife authority in a bid to ease environmental approval for one of the three gas-fired power plants it wants to erect in South Africa.

In exchange for the game farm, the Turkish company said that Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife, which manages protected areas in the southeastern province of KwaZulu-Natal, has undertaken to not object to its plan for a 450 megawatt, ship-mounted power plant at Richards Bay harbor.

“The Port of Richards Bay presents a unique circumstance where the active industrial port, used largely for coal exports, operates within an estuarine bay,” Karpowership said in a statement sent to Bloomberg. “Biodiversity offsetting is a form of impact mitigation.”

The undertaking, which forms part of Karpowership’s submission for environmental approval of the plant, is the latest twist in a more than than two-year saga in which the company has fought environmental objections and court cases opposing its plans.

Karpowership won about 60% of a government tender in March 2021 to supply 2,000 megawatts to ease chronic power shortages in the country. While the initial target date for power production for Karpowership and other winners in the tender was August 2022 none of them are up and running yet.

Separately Karpowership said that the environment department has now given it permission to continue with an appeal against a ruling that it couldn’t proceed with a plan to position a 450-megawatt plant at the southern port of Ngqura after a dispute with the national port operator over a mooring site.

In addition the Turkish company plans a 320-megawatt plant at the western port of Saldanha.

Before proceeding with any of them Karpowership will still need to get final environmental approval and sign a power-purchase agreement with national power utility Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd.

South Africa’s national power utility is currently implementing rolling power outages of more than 10 hours a day.DM

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  • Karl Sittlinger says:

    “Karpowership has agreed to buy and donate a game farm to a provincial wildlife authority in a bid to ease environmental approval for one of the three gas-fired power plants it wants to erect in South Africa.”

    Or we could also just call it what it is: a bribe.

  • Walter Spatula says:

    Why is this not bribery?

  • Johan Buys says:

    Whose farm are they buying?

  • Steve Davidson says:

    “Biodiversity offsetting is a form of impact mitigation.” – really? How exactly?

    I thought the environmental damage would happen in the harbour from the powerships, so a little game farm won’t make a bit of difference except to the Authority’s bosses’ bank balances.

    Ye gods, these people are stupid and crooked it seems – par for the ANC course I suppose.

  • J C says:

    “Karpowership has agreed to buy and donate a game farm to a provincial wildlife authority in a bid to ease environmental approval for one of the three gas-fired power plants it wants to erect in South Africa.”

    You just cannot make this stuff up! Mind you, its not to far from a t-shirt and KFC box meal, I suppose…

  • Ewan says:

    And just does this already green area changing hands offset their environmental nonsense and damage???

  • Thinker and Doer says:

    This deal needs to be thoroughly investigated and scrutinized, it is quite clearly bribery. We need to know who is benefitting from the purchase, and the karpower deal as a whole. The decisi9n of KZN Wildlife needs to be reviewed

  • L Dennis says:

    No thanks keep your game farm which most probably is already part of loot from government officials.
    What a disgrace

  • Hermann Funk says:

    This is just a bribe in a different form.

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