Arnot Power Station

From Global Energy Monitor

Arnot power station is a 2,352-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant in Mpumalanga, South Africa.


The map below shows the location of the plant, near Rietkuil, Nkangala District, Mpumalanga.

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Background on Plant

The Arnot Power Station is a coal-fired station owned by the South African publicly-owned electricity utility Eskom, located at Middelburg, Mpumalanga. Construction of Arnot started in 1968, and was commissioned from 1971 to 1975.[1]

The power station comprised six units of 350 MW each. In 2008, Eskom said it planned to commission 60 MW upgrades in 2008, a further 60 MW in 2009 and a further 30 MW in 2010.[2]

In 2015, Eskom gave the unit ratings as follows: 1 x 370 MW; 1 x 390 MW; 2 x 396 MW; 2 x 400 MW for a total of 2,352 MW installed capacity and 2,232 MW nominal capacity.[3]

In April 2016, the Eskom Board said it approved the commencement of a pre-feasibility study for renewal options for four of our oldest power stations - Komati, Camden, Hendrina, and Arnot. The pre-feasibility study would take 18 months to complete, and would include looking at options such as plant life extension.[4]

In April 2020, Eskom listed the planned retirement dates for the plant's six units between 2021 and 2029.[5]

Disruptions & Load Shedding

The Arnot Power Station is one of several plants in South Africa facing recurring disruptions.[6] Eskom frequently implements load shedding due to breakdowns at the power station, such as in September 2020[7] and June 2021.[8] In addition, in 2018, union sources claimed that five of the units were down because of low coal supplies and wage protests.[9]

Plant Details

  • Sponsor: Eskom
  • Parent company: Eskom
  • Location: Rietkuil, Nkangala District, Mpumalanga, South Africa
  • Coordinates: -25.9438068, 29.7920396 (exact)
  • Status: Operating
  • Gross capacity: 2,352 MW (Units 1-6: 370 - 400 MW each)
  • Type: Subcritical
  • In service: 1971-75
  • Coal type:
  • Coal source:
  • Source of financing:

Articles and Resources


  1. "Heritage - Arnot Power Station". Eskom. Retrieved January 6, 2016.
  2. South African government, "National Response to South Africa's Electricity Shortage", January 2008
  3. "Fact sheet with additional information" (PDF). 2015. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  4. "Eskom Board approves Fleet Renewal Strategy based on economic viability," Eskom, April 24, 2016
  5. "Response of Eskom to CER, Reference number: PAIA 0087 MAN," CER website, April 28, 2020
  6. "Load shedding to get worse, expect stage 5," City Press, June 6, 2021
  7. "Load shedding to continue until 22:00 as plant breakdowns increase," fin 24, September 1, 2020
  8. "Load shedding can’t be our new norm especially during unforgiving winter months," IOL News, June 4, 2021
  9. "Disruptions hit Arnot power station in South Africa amid protests," Reuters, July 31, 2018

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