JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – Reams of questions streamed in ahead of the questions deadline for the independent power producer (IPP) project that Anglo American Thermal Coal is facilitating at eMalahleni in Mpumalanga.
“Our period for questions closed on Sunday night at midnight and we’ve received reams of questions,” Anglo American Thermal Coal regional head of strategy Ian Hall tells Mining Weekly Online.
The company is out on bid to seven developers as the environmental-impact assessment proceeds.
The 450 MW Khanyisa is expected to be the first large-scale IPP since the promulgation of the Integrated Resource Plan 2010 earlier this year.
The successful bidder will be given access to coal from Anglo American Thermal Coal’s discard dumps and make the entire capacity available to Anglo American Platinum.
“We’re hoping to get in bids in January, do the bid evaluation and tie down the transaction by around the middle of 2012,” says Hall.
Two use-of-network agreements are being finalised with State electricity utility Eskom, one allowing the IPP to feed power into the national electricity grid, and the other governing offtake of power from the national grid from a new substation that Eskom will be required to build.
“Eskom’s putting together a budget quote for us at the moment,” says Hall.
The mining group – which has sufficient discard coal at the Kleinkopje, Greenside and Landau collieries to generate 1 200 MW for 40 years – aims to conclude a 25-year power purchase agreement with the eventual developer.
The water required will be piped from Anglo American’s eMalahleni water reclamation plant, which treats effluent from underground collieries in the area, as well as from BHP Billiton’s closed South Witbank mine.
Ground breaking could start after mid-2012, followed by a 36-month construction phase. The technical specification anticipates the commissioning of three 150 MW units.
The technology solutions offered by the bidders will determine the eventual capital cost of the project.
A conventional power plant design using three turbines and circulating fluidised bed boilers to deal with lower fuel qualities is expected.
The raw coal is typically in the range of 10 GJ/t to 15 GJ/t, with around 50% ash.
Owing to its relatively high sulphur content, the coal will be partially beneficiated.
The technology is expected to produce reduced sulphur oxide and nitrogen oxide emissions relative to other coal-fired generators.
ACWA/Huadian, AES, China Guodian (GD Power), GDF Suez, JSW Energy, Kepco and Marubeni are the prequalified bidders and Standard Bank, Edward Nathan Sonnenbergs, Mott MacDonald South Africa and Aurecon are advising Anglo American Thermal Coal.