Eskom has been instructed to shut and repair two polluting units at its Kendal power station after years of chronic non-compliance with emissions limits.

Business Day reports the compliance notice – issued by Forestry, Fisheries & Environmental Affairs Minister Barbara Creecy – relates to Kendal’s emissions of particulate matter, known to cause respiratory diseases.

Last week, Creecy rejected an objection by Eskom and upheld her earlier instruction to have the utility shut down and repair units one and five at Kendal.

The move comes after unsuccessful attempts to enforce Kendal’s compliance with emissions standards over the past five years.

In December 2019, Creecy issued a compliance notice to Eskom to shut and repair the units, but Eskom filed an objection in January, arguing the instruction was unreasonable and would imperil its ability to avoid or at least limit loadshedding.

Last week, Creecy rejected the appeal, noting that ‘failure to bring the power station back into compliance will present serious environmental effects and health threats to affected communities’.

But she conceded that Eskom should take off and repair one unit at a time for the sake of national power supply.

Now, either unit one or five of Kendal must be taken offline for repairs by 11 June.

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