See also earlier posts on Rising risks of coal-fired power stations, Coal fired utilities delayed in US, and Coal - still the cheapest option, where it was pointed out that the continued expansion of coal-fired power stations ( as cheapest form of energy) is coming increasingly under pressure for reasons related mainly to construction costs and climate risks.
How will this impact on developing nations, including South Africa? We are certainly not immune to rising construction costs. We are also not immune to climate risks, although South Africa has no binding constraints on the emissions of greenhouse gases. Cleaner coal technology is often put forward as a mediatory solution, but a practical solution to carbon capture and storage at affordable costs is still far of (see post Climate risks start to bite Eskom's planned coal fired power stations).
With escalating problems in energy security, vast reserves of still relative cheap coal (when compared to natural; gas and oil) and surging demand from Chindia (The Future of coal), there are incentives abound to keep investing in coal-fired power stations. Whether escalating environmental risks will be acknowledged and rigorously included or used as a scapegoat for stalling development is more a function of leadership.
On this score and if you are in coal: some important financing institutions are starting to make noises that is worth taking note of.