Coal demand for power generation in Botswana:-greenhouse gas emission implications: a case of Morupule-B power station
PublisherUniversity of Botswana, www.ub.bw
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Botswana has recently experienced severe shortages of electricity resulting in frequent ‘load shedding’. It is hoped that existing and planned coal-fired power plants will provide sufficient electricity for the country in the future. A new power station, Morupule-B, has started operating. However, the use of coal for electricity generation is coming under increasing pressure from environmentalists as coal has been identified as one of the fuels contributing seriously to global warming via gaseous emissions produced during its combustion. A further dimension to the situation is added by the fact that Botswana is a country that has chosen to adopt and actively maintain a pro-nature stance to conservation of biotic resources. All the above factors have created a dilemma: since Botswana has abundant coal reserves, and the resource can be used to generate electricity for the region, what is the scale of repercussions and benefits that would accompany such a development? This project analysed and quantified gaseous emissions from the Morupule-B coal-fired power station in Botswana. The objectives of this study were: To quantify the total amount of greenhouse gas emissions from the Morupule-B power station in Botswana; to identify the implications of the GHG emissions on Botswana’s commitments to international environmental conventions, and to probe, discuss and suggest possible mitigation measures against GHG emissions from the coal fired power generation project. To achieve these objectives, the project used the Environmental Sustainability conceptual framework and IPCC Emission Factor methodology. It found that Morupule-B produces an estimated 3.8 billion kg of CO2 equivalent per annum, and therefore that it does not turn Botswana into a net emitter of greenhouse gases. It recommended that Botswana may consider increasing coal-fired power stations but incorporating technological interventions to minimise the release of greenhouse gases and other pollutants into the environment.