AfriForum has launched a petition against the planned new biogas plant that the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) intends to build at its campus, in Pretoria.
AfriForum, as well as residents, are concerned that the plant might be unsafe and pollute the area, which borders various residential areas.
AfriForum Gauteng North district coordinator Lambert de Klerk said the organisation is not opposed to the building of a biogas plant, seeing that it generates green energy; however, it is opposed to the area where the proposed plant will be built.
“A plant such as this will probably affect adjacent areas of up to 3 km.”
It is proposed that up to 45 000 t/y of organic feedstock will be processed at the plant. The plant will supply the CSIR with electricity and serve as a pilot on sustainable power supply.
The CSIR says the plant can generate up to 3 MW of power from feedstock sourced from the Tshwane metropolitan and local shopping malls.
The CSIR is busy with a scoping and environmental-impact assessment process, as well as waste management licence application, for the proposed project. The CSIR has appointed Chand Specialist Environmental and Sustainability Consultants to conduct the assessment and application.
The CSIR has been investigating bio-industrial development since 2016, including biorefinery and small-scale investigative on-site biogas production. The production of biogas is in line with current scientific research in the field of sustainable energy production.