On Thursday, 16 July, the private-sector owned Richards Bay Coal Terminal (RBCT) announced that it is embarking on a R1.34-billion equipment replacement project. The project will boost South Africa’s coal supply chain and help RBCT expand its footprint in the coal industry. Specialist technical services, management and engineering consultancy, Aurecon, was announced as the project manager for the large scale project.
Aurcon’s Global Chairman, Teddy Daka, says that Aurecon is honoured to be appointed as the project manager for the replacement project and commended RBCT on future-proofing their business.
“At Aurecon, we understand the value of coal to the South African economy. As we know, coal is critical to the electricity supply of our country. It’s vital to many industries, the country’s GDP and exports, as well as the labour force,” said Daka during the media briefing.
“In many operations, renewal of existing equipment has become critically important. Coal terminals such as RBCT which have the vision and foresight to replace equipment that is nearing its end of life will be able to ensure continued growth and success well into the future,” said Daka.
“We would like to commend the RBCT for having the vision to take the necessary steps to add more value to South Africa’s coal supply chain and the country’s economy. We also congratulate you on selecting a winning team to help you achieve your goal of maintaining capacity well into the future,” said Daka.
Exports from RBCT rose to a new record last year. The equipment that will be replaced includes two stacker reclaimers and two shiploaders. The equipment has been used by the RBCT for 39 years and the replacement project will have minimal impact on the coal terminal’s daily operations and business.
“The beauty of the project is that we will not take the old out until the new is in and there will be a quick changeover,” commented RBCT Engineering and Project Manager, Bill Murphy.
Aurecon’s was involved in detailed scenario planning and discussions to bring RBCT’s replacement project to life. “The equipment that will be replaced was commissioned in 1976 and continues to operate to this day. Its replacement will not only improve the efficiencies and reliability of the terminal but ensure continued sustainable growth in South Africa’s coal export sector,” commented Albert Geldenhuys, Managing Director, Aurecon South Africa, who also attended the media briefing.
Aurecon has been supporting clients in the mining and resources sector for many years and the company has an impressive international track record in coal mining projects. This includes the engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) services for the expansion of Abbot Point Coal Terminal in Australia, which was provided by Aurecon in collaboration with Hatch. The Abbot Point Coal Terminal is an export terminal with an annual capacity of 50 million tonnes. The expansion was named Project of the Year by Consult Australia and Facility of the Year by the Australian Bulk Handling Review.