THE ANC majority in the Kouga Council supports the proposal that a nuclear power plant be built at Thyspunt, but further public consultation must be undertaken before an official commitment is made.

Fukushima is still releasing radioactive steam but this will never happen at Thyspunt says Eskom.

That was the outcome of a lively debate about the potential pros and cons of the proposed Thyspunt development at a meeting of the Kouga Council on Monday. The Democratic Alliance (DA) voted against the proposal based on the fact that the Impact Studies are yet to be completed and have also revealed serious flaws in the whole process.

The debate centred around an item recommending that the Kouga Council approved in principle the development of the proposed nuclear power plant at Thyspunt.

Kouga Executive Mayor Booi Koerat said Eskom had asked for the Council to make an “in principle” decision so that it could start putting in place the working structures that would be required should National Government give the go-ahead for the Thyspunt development.

The mayor emphasised that no final plans were in place yet since the Environmental Impact Assessment was still being finalised and a Record of Decision (ROD) was expected next year only.

“The potential economic spin-offs of the development, both directly and indirectly, would serve as a much-needed lifeline for Kouga’s people. Residents are battling financially and Council cannot stand in the way of a project that could give our economy the boost it needs,” he explained.

He said that despite this majority view, Council resolved that a final decision would only be made after further public consultation.

“The development is a highly emotive issue. That is why it is important that our final decision should reflect the will of the people and not that of individual councillors. Consequently, we resolved that a public participation process must be undertaken before a final commitment is made,” he said.

“This decision might prove to be one of the most important resolutions this Council will make. Let us ensure we make a decision that is in the best interest of our community as a whole.”

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