Legalbrief, 5 March
Following a Cabinet meeting last week, government said it remained committed to expanding the availability of renewable power to enhance the country’s energy mix. According to an SA News report, the executive said it aimed to ensure a responsible and just transition to a cleaner future. ‘Renewable energy and energy storage technologies enable us to convert electrical power into an energy form and store it for later use when needed. Energy storage systems reduce the need for back-up capacity from coal or gas-fired electrical generation plants, thereby reducing power sector emissions and help us mitigate climate change,’ Cabinet said. Renewable power from independent power producers (IPP) currently accounts for 3.8GW, less than 5% of the energy sold to consumers. ‘Energy is a key enabler in SA’s trajectory towards socio-economic growth and development. The National Development Plan states that SA needs at least 20 000 megawatts of renewable energy by 2030,’ Cabinet said. Within eight years, the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme has attracted R209.4bn in committed private sector investment, resulting in much-needed alleviation of fiscal pressure, Cabinet noted.