Karpowership SA was granted three generation licences earlier in the week.
- An official at South Africa’s energy regulator says that incorrect information about how to apply for a generation license is hosted on its website.
- Nersa’s Nhlanhla Gumede was trying to explain to 702 radio host Clement Manyathela why the regulator granted a generation licence to Karpowership SA after it was denied environmental authorisation.
- When Manyathela brought up a document hosted on the group’s website stating that environmental authorisation was needed, Gumede said it was wrong and must be “corrected”.
A top official at the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) has said the group’s website provides incorrect information about applying for a generation licence following inconsistencies brought up in a radio interview.
Nhlanhla Gumede, who is responsible for electricity regulation, was being interviewed by Clement Manyathela on Talk Radio 702 on Thursday.
The regulator on Tuesday approved three generation licences for floating powership provider Karpowership SA.
Environmental group, the Green Connection, slammed the decision, adding it would investigate taking legal action to have the decision overturned. Karpowership SA, meanwhile, described the decision as a “very important milestone”.
On Thursday, Manyathela quizzed Gumede on how Nersa could grant generation licences to Karpowership SA after it was denied environmental authorisation and a power purchase agreement with Eskom has not yet been concluded.
He based his questions on a document called “generation licensing and registration frequently asked questions,” which until Thursday afternoon was hosted on Nersa’s website.
The document explained how Nersa’s licensing procedures work. It states that a signed power purchase agreement “should be part of financial agreements” and that applications must include environmental permits.
In response, Gumede said the document was wrong.
In the past Nersa had “overstated” its mandate, he said. It was now working strictly according to the letter of Section 10 of the Electricity Regulation Act, which does not require these documents be provided when applications are made.
He added that “past mistakes” – a reference to the document in question, would be “corrected”.