The transition to a low carbon future must be rapid, and must be for everyone

In response to the interdict sought to stop yesterday’s signature of the Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) for 27 renewable independent power producer procurement programme (REIPPPP) projects, the Life After Coal Campaign emphasises the urgent need for a rapid, but just transition from coal to a low carbon future. Workers in power stations and coal mines […]

Implications of DoE’s amendments to the Electricity Regulation Act

This article contains comments which were made during a speech given at a recent breakfast hosted by the South African Independent Power Producers Association (SAIPPA) in Johannesburg.  Mmamoloko Kubayi, in her position as Minister of Energy, signed an amendment to the Electricity Regulation Act, 2006 (ERA) into law, which was issued under Government Gazette No. […]

Igniting Eskom Generation: Turning the deadweight into economic fuel

Eskom’s current debt is R350-billion, and it needs to raise a further R150-billion over the next three to four years. This is almost certainly impossible, even with a government guarantee. It would appear that Eskom cannot stay afloat without a gargantuan bailout by the South African government. NERSA’s low electricity price increase announced in December […]

Fifty actions to address the Eskom and electricity supply industry mess

A question often asked of me recently by radio and TV presenters, print and electronic media journalists, is what exactly needs to be done by the new Eskom board and chairman in the weeks, months and year ahead to steady the ship and steer the utility in the right direction. Over the last eight months, […]

Eskom’s financial crisis and the viability of coal-fired power in South Africa

Meridian Economics published a report recently on Eskom’s financial crisis and the decreasing demand for electricity while its costs continue to rise dramatically, driven primarily by its new-build programme. This is the executive summary of the report. The South African power system has reached a crossroads. Eskom, the national power utility, is experiencing an unprecedented period […]

New dams in Africa could add risk to power supplies down the line

In the 1980s and 1990s parts of Africa saw a surge in dam building for energy production. After a brief hiatus there has been renewed interested. Many new construction projects are planned and underway across sub-Saharan Africa. Hydropower represents a significant and rapidly expanding proportion of electricity production in eastern and southern Africa. Around 90% […]

Understanding natural gas and LNG options in Africa

The US Department of Energy recently published a handbook authored by a number of African contributors amongst others, which focuses on the benefits African countries can derive from the development of liquid natural gas (LNG) resources on the continent. LNG exports are poised to be an important catalyst for economic growth in African countries. Natural gas and […]