The capacity to generate 4,800 megawatts when fully operational - enough to power the equivalent of 3.5 million households across South Africa. More than $18 billion rand (1.3 billion US dollars) invested in the local economy. Thousands of jobs created.
The numbers speak for themselves, but they can't capture the overall impact of Kusile Power Station.
In this photo essay, take a look at the incredible work under way at Kusile and meet some of the extraordinary GE professionals powering change in South Africa.
Kusile is the first power plant in Africa to implement WFGD technology. In April 2018, the Kusile WFGD system achieved a 93% percent removal efficiency rate, making it the cleanest coal-fired plant in South Africa.
The absorbers remove both sulphur oxides (SOx) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) from Kusile’s emissions.
Nearly 80% of the workers on the ground at Kusile come from local areas. The other 20% are specially skilled workers who have been brought in to help train and transfer skills to the local workforce.
According to Nthabiseng, ”Kusile stands as a living example of a running power plant that ensures that the emissions that come out of it is clean in comparison to other coal-fired plants.“
Lindiwe Phafodi is the first candidate in Africa to be enrolled in the GE Project Management Leadership Programme, which piloted in 2017. Originally hailing from Middelburg, Mpumalanga, just a short distance from Kusile, Lindiwe takes pride in having acquired an array of technical skills across disciplines including construction, compliance, financial, safety, civil technical management and project tracking.
”When I studied mechanical engineering,“ Lindiwe says, ”I wanted to be in a technical field. So when the opportunity came for me to join GE at Kusile, I took it with both hands. That is something that I've always prepared for. And I'm happy I'm part of this project.
He says the complexities of learning the South African way of life has been the most exciting part of his career.
Watching the economic and social benefits of Kusile's construction has been one of the highlights of his time at the plant. As intense and difficult as turbine fitting can be, he and his team have remained entirely focused on their main task: getting the plant's generators commissioned.
Lebogang says he will never forget how anxious he was to work inside of a power plant because of the sheer size of the machinery. As a member of the trainee programme, he's “paying attention to detail” as he saw the importance of precision in turbine fitting.
Bathandwa speaks highly about the skills that he has been able to acquire and develop. As the project comes to a close, Bathandwa says he is confident that finding another job will not be difficult because his newly acquired skills and personal development give him a distinct competitive advantage.
Workers trained at Kusile will be able to utilize their new skills to secure employment on new projects.
GE has set its sights on an ambitious goal: powering 95% of the local population by 2030. Kusile plays a crucial role in meeting that objective, while also driving the economic development of Mpumalanga.
Learn more about Kusile and GE Steam Power’s work in South Africa here.