After a six-year delay, the government finally released the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP), its long-term energy plan, last week. Given the difficulties, delays and lack of political courage that former ministers have suffered, mineral resources and energy minister Gwede Mantashe deserves some credit. 

The plan maps out how SA will meet its energy needs by 2030. Coal is expected to account for 43% of installed capacity, with 33% in wind and solar power. This means the government will seek to procure from the private sector or build the generation capacity through Eskom to meet supply.

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