Archive: Renewable energy


Explainer Electricity pylons at sunset

Energy is essential for the functioning of any modern economy. South Africa’s Central Energy Fund (CEF) does the vital job of maintaining that energy supply.

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Since 2003, the South African government has been funding free electricity for the poorest households. This is because it recognises that poverty is a barrier to electricity access.

Explainer Photograph of a small green plant growing out of a jar of coins

COP26 saw South Africa make a public commitment to greening its economy. But, can non-renewable resources be part of this transition?

Explainer Photo of Gwede Mantaste, Soutb Africa's Minister for the Department Minerals and Energy Resources

The mission of the Department of Energy is to “regulate and transform the sector for the provision of secure, sustainable and affordable energy”.

Explainer An aerial view of many house in Mpumalanga province

This phase-down of coal will bring significant changes to South Africa. This makes the need for a just transition away from coal fundamental to ensure no one is left behind.

Explainer Various glass tubes and bottles with liquids

Transportation has a significant impact on climate change, and biofuel could be one of the solutions.

Explainer Decommissioned power stations in Cape Town

South Africa’s Low Emission Development Strategy 2050 is the country’s most recent emissions reductions plan.

Explainer Engineer in industrial facility wearing high visibility jacket and safety helmet

Experts say that hydrogen is one answer to South Africa’s greenhouse gas emissions problem.

Explainer Blue and white infographic showing how hydrogen (H2) can power transportation and buildings

South Africa’s Low Emission Development Strategy 2050 is the country’s most recent emissions reductions plan.

Explainer Wind farm in front of blue sky, South Africa

Like many countries worldwide, South Africa has committed to reaching net zero by 2050. To achieve this, the country will need to invest heavily in renewables, including wind energy.

Explainer Photo of a gas turbine power plant

South Africa’s Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) is the country’s long-term energy plan until 2030. It became official government policy in October 2019.

Explainer Deep coal mine in Far Eastern Federal District, Russia.

The resource curse is a phenomenon that occurs when a country has an abundance of natural resources but cannot grow its economy.

Explainer Solar panels power a building in Cape Town, South Africa.

With the roll out of solar panels globally, solar energy is increasing in popularity as an alternative, renewable source of energy. In South Africa, this is no different.

Explainer Hydrogen powered silver car in showroom

Hydrogen is gaining international attention as a potential green alternative to fossil fuels. This is because hydrogen can be “green” when produced using renewable sources.

Explainer Rooftop solar panels on flat roof in urban area

South Africa suffers from crippling power outages, locally known as load shedding. In the first three months of 2021, load shedding occurred for 650 hours.

Explainer Ariel view of large scale solar power plant

The Independent Power Producers (IPP) procurement programme is part of the South African government’s answer to its energy generation shortage.

Explainer Photovoltaic solar panels cover a large flat urban rooftop

Solar power is a clean, renewable source of energy that does not emit greenhouse gases. Photovoltaic technology (PV) is a type of solar energy.

Explainer A wind farm in Caledon, Western Cape.

Eskom, South Africa’s state-owned electricity provider, is under severe strain. In July 2021, Eskom’s debt stood at about R400 billion.

Explainer Large biogas facility containers

Biogas is a renewable energy source produced when anaerobic bacteria break down organic materials. It is different from natural gas as natural gas is a fossil fuel, while biogas is a renewable energy source.

Explainer white and black tank containing hydrogen

In August 2021, South Africa’s National Business Initiative (NBI) published a government-backed report. It described the pathways that the country must take to decarbonise.