The Electricity Governance Initiative believes that an electricity planning approach is called for that has the capacity to make the necessary adjustments timeously, that seeks to address key socio-economic challenges for improved livelihoods and that sets out to protect dwindling ecosystems services.
A 20-year electricity supply and implementation plan – the Integrated Resource Plan 2010 to 2030 (IRP2010) – has been devised by the South African government. It does include a limited role for renewable energy. However, old and expensive technologies are prioritised. Rather, a SMARTer electricity plan, with renewable energy as a central component, would enhance environmental quality, provide more jobs, address energy poverty and reduce capital expenditure – a road map to a better future for all South Africans.
Below is an outline of the sections of the SMART Electricity Planning Report.
1. SMARTer expenditure
The SMART Electricity Plan, when compared to the IRP2010, would reduce capital expenditure more considerably as well as enable more flexible investments and avoid the high risk of expensive, stranded assets. TELL ME HOW
2. SMARTer jobs
Renewable energy and energy efficiency create more jobs across the country than a supply-centred plan focused on coal and nuclear energy, particularly when local manufacturing is prioritised. TELL ME HOW
3. SMARTer pro-poor access
The SMART Electricity Plan enables more people to access energy services,thereby improving their well-being. This importantly includes the promotion of gender equality. TELL ME HOW
4. SMARTer local economic development, particularly in manufacturing
Energy efficiency and renewable energy provide many opportunities for small business development – the exciting growth of a new industrial sector — well matched to the South African skills base. TELL ME HOW
5.SMARTer community-owned power generation technologies
Smaller, easier to raise financing allows independence from a central power supply,and creates jobs everywhere in the country. Renewable energy is fast to build – unlike nuclear — and can be installed close to the point of use. TELL ME HOW
6. SMARTer electricity conservation and efficiency
It is five times cheaper to invest in energy conservation and efficiency than to build a new power plant. We can reduce the country’s electricity use immediately,using existing technologies, and roll out advancing ones quickly, while ensuring just economic development. TELL ME HOW
7. SMARTer health for people and planet
Renewable energies, unlike fossil fuels and nuclear,reduce pollution and preserve scarce water resources.Improved air and water quality in turn lead to better health, and reduce the risk of carbon trade penalties. TELL ME HOW