Burn planned for Koeberg reserve

Eskom spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe, stakeholder management manager Lewis Phidza and acting power station manager Velaphi Ntuli.

A controlled burn is planned in the Koeberg Nature Reserve between October and November. Koeberg power station’s environmental expert Jurina Le Roux said the burn of approximately 84 hectares would clear invasive vegetation, in terms of the National Environmental Management Biodiversity Act.

The reserve’s neighbours would be notified about it, she said.

Any objections to the burn can be lodged with the City. Koeberg hopes to clear all invasive vegetation on the nature reserve by 2030.

* Koeberg shut down its unit 1 reactor on Monday September 19 for a month-long routine refueling (“Reactor offline for maintenance,” Tabletalk, September 21)

The plant’s acting general manger Velaphi Ntuli said the unit contributed 2.2 percent of the power on the national grid.

During the shut-down one third of the used enriched uranium fuel will be replaced. Modifications, maintenance and inspections will also be done. Mr Ntuli said the refueling period had been shortened to maintain a more efficient electricity supply to consumers and match the refueling time in other countries.

“A 35-day outage is shorter. Last year, we were offline for 90 days – it’s too long. The 35-day outage is in line with world standards. China does it in eight days and the USA in 18 days.

A shorter outage will mean more capacity will be available and there will be fewer restrictions around power.”

A refueling outage for the other reactor, unit 2, is scheduled for March and April next year.