The consortium includes Thebe Investments, Pele Natural Energy, Mazi Capital and Palace Group.

Planned to be built in the country’s coal hub Mpumalanga Province, the proposed power plant is expected to be the first of its kind in the country which feature modern circulating fluidised-bed (CFB) technology.

The CFB technology allows the plant to lower sulphur oxide and nitrogen oxide emissions when compared to that of existing coal -fired power stations in the country.

The Khanyisa power plant is designed to reduce environmental impact by making use of discard coal available as waste piles in the nearby Anglo American collieries.

ACWA Power said that the facility would require increased capital and operating cost due to the utilization of the coal waste, which is technically complex.

Designed as a zero liquid effluent discharge plant, the Khanyisa project will comply with the strict environmental standards of South Africa, the Equator Principles and the World Bank standards.

Additionally, the water used at the power plant will be reclaimed from underground mine operations.

ACWA Power president and CEO Paddy Padmanathan said: “Following on from the Bokpoort CSP project which is now fully operational and the Redstone CSP project where construction is expected to commence soon, the Khanyisa award demonstrates ACWA Power’s commitment to the South African IPP market and our ambition to create a strong, self-sustaining multi-fuel portfolio.”

The project is expected to create 3000 construction jobs and a further 150 jobs during the operational life.

Upon completion, the plant will be operated and maintained jointly by Palace Group and NOMAC, a wholly owned unit of Acwa Power.

Image: The South Africa’s proposed power plant uses discard coal available as waste piles in Mpumalanga Province. Photo: courtesy of John Kasawa/