South Africa’s cities to switch to solar as Eskom monopoly ends

by SammyNovember 2, 2020

South Africa’s biggest cities are preparing to source their own power after the energy ministry this month approved letting them wean themselves off the state utility that’s subjected cities to outages for the past 13 years.

Johannesburg and Cape Town, which have a combined population of about 10 million people, plan to diversify away from the electricity produced mainly from coal by Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd to more sustainable sources such as solar and power generated from landfill gas.

“The City is looking at 300 megawatts of renewable” energy, Kadri Nassiep, Cape Town’s executive director for energy and climate change, said by email. “If all clarity is obtained and plans forge ahead, we could start seeing greater diversification of our energy resources as a city in about three to five years time.”

In addition to improving security of supply, the move will allow the cities to boost their fight against climate change by using power that doesn’t result in the emission of greenhouse gases. Still, it will slash revenue for Eskom, which is struggling to service a $30 billion debt bill.

“Internationally many cities are at the forefront of dealing with climate-change disasters and so have adopted proactive climate-change responses,” Lauren Hermanus, director of Adapt, a South African company that provides consultancy services on sustainable energy, said in an interview.

Source: https://businesstech.co.za/news/energy/443644/south-africas-cities-to-switch-to-solar-as-eskom-monopoly-ends/?fbclid=IwAR1qkc3DRRhkbUqROPwIUh2-5Z6AKF7-8mfJuxx7cthduMRuQWZuMkVwlko

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