Camden Power Station

From Global Energy Monitor

Camden power station is a 1,600-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant in Mpumalanga, South Africa.


The map below shows the location of the plant, near Camden, Gert Sibande District, Mpumalanga.

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Background on Plant

Camden Power Station is a coal-fired station owned by the South African publicly-owned electricity utility Eskom. It has an installed capacity of 1,600 MW and comprises eight 200 MW units.[1]

It was commissioned in 1967-1969. Between 1990 and 2006 the station was mothballed, but Eskom decided to recommission the station, starting with unit 6 in July 2005 and completing with unit 1 in July 2008.[2]

In April 2020 Eskom closed the coal plant for up to three months due to the risk of collapse of the coal ash dam. Eskom stated that “the current dam has reached its maximum height and therefore it poses a safety risk to all personnel on site [and] neighbouring communities, and could also be a cause for environmental contravention.” The Camden plant is one that is likely to be closed as new units at Eskom's Medupi and Kusile plants are commissioned.[3] In May 2020 it was reported that Eskom had changed its planning on closing the Camden plant as well as its Grootvlei and Hendrina plants. These plants, which were scheduled to close between 2020 and 2026, will now stay open until 2030.[4]

Power distribution

In addition to feeding the South African grid, Camden, along with Arnot Power Station, also feeds the Mozal Aluminium smelter in Mozambique via 400kV transmission lines.[5] Mozal consumes around 950MW.[6]

Proposed renewal

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.[7]

However, in March 2017 Eskom said that it would hold meetings with the government and labour to discuss its plans to decommission five power stations over the next five years: Komati Power Station, Hendrina Power Station, Kriel Power Station, Grootvlei Power Station, and Camden Power Station. Eskom said the stations are old and unneeded, given the country's plans for new power capacity by independent power producers (IPPs).[8]

Plant Details

  • Sponsor: Eskom
  • Parent company: Eskom
  • Location: Camden, Gert Sibande District, Mpumalanga, South Africa
  • Coordinates: -26.6214772, 30.0900738 (exact)
  • Status: Operating (commissioned in 1967-1969, recommissioned in 2005-2008)
  • Gross capacity: 1,600 MW (8 x 200 MW)
  • Type: Subcritical
  • Coal type:
  • Coal source:
  • Source of financing:

Articles and resources


  1. South African government, "National Response to South Africa's Electricity Shortage", January 2008.
  2. Dr. Robert Peltier, PE, "Camden Power Station, Mpumalanga Province, South Africa," Power, 10/01/2014
  3. Eskom shuts Camden power plant as ash dam poses safety risk Business Day, Apr. 29, 2020
  4. South Africa may forces Eskom to halt two units at 3.5 GW Kendal coal-fired plant Enerdata, May 20, 2020
  5. "Camden Power Station". Eskom. Retrieved 6 January 2010.
  6. "SA energy crisis affects Mozambique aluminium export". Engineering News (Creamer Media). 2008-09-28. Retrieved 6 January 2010.
  7. "Eskom Board approves Fleet Renewal Strategy based on economic viability," Eskom, 2016/04/24
  8. "NUM goes to war over proposed Eskom power station closures," Mining Weekly, Mar 29, 2017

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External resources