Feb 17, 2012
Earthlife Africa labels proposed energy bills as ‘undemocratic’Back
Africa|Energy|Eskom|Projects|Africa|South Africa|Energy|Environmental|Dipuo Peters|Infrastructure|Makoma Lekalakala|Power
© Reuse this
Programme officer Makoma Lekalakala urged the DoE to withdraw these bills, saying it would place significant decision-making power in the hands of Energy Minister Dipuo Peters, by eviscerating the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa).
“This goes against the Constitution and implementation of democratic institutions. An independent and impartial regulator is a critical part of the checks and balances that define modern representative democracies such as South Africa,” she stated.
Lekalakala also said the degree to which the public will be removed from the decision-making process was concerning.
“These bills will further prevent access to information and the public's input into the decision-making process; especially regarding the withholding of commercially sensitive information, which refers to tariffs and especially tariff agreements between large multinationals and State-owned enterprises such as Eskom.”
Further, Lekalakala stressed that the proposed bills would revoke the condition of public attendance at energy-related meetings and of placing the outcome of those meetings in the public domain.
“In the coming decades, we will spend well over a trillion rand of public money in new generation capacity. The potential for corruption, fruitless and wasteful expenditure, maladministration and unnecessary and costly litigation against the State will be increased dramatically if the bills are passed into law,” she said.
The proposed bills were approved by Cabinet towards the end of last year and published for comment in December.
The DoE stated that the National Energy Regulator Amendment Bill aimed to approve Nersa’s decision-making process by establishing an appeal board, while improving the governance, accountability, structure and working relations of Nersa.
The appeal board would also assist in attracting private sector investment to the sector.
Further, the DoE said the objective behind the Electricity Regulation Second Amendment Bill was to ensure alignment between the different laws relating to the electricity industry, provide for efficient regulation of the different licensees and ensure quick implementation of electricity infrastructure projects.
It would also provide for the efficient procurement of power from independent power producers and enhance regulation within the electricity industry, while empowering the Minister to expropriate land for electricity infrastructure on behalf of a licence holder.
Edited by: Mariaan Webb© Reuse this Comment Guidelines
Other Energy News
Recent Research Reports
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Road and Rail 2014 (PDF Report)
This six-page brief covers key developments in the road and rail industries over the past 12 months, including details of South Africa’s road and rail network and prospects for both sectors.
Real Economy Insight: Steel 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the steel industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the global and South African steel and stainless steel markets, South Africa’s major steel producers and events that have shaped these markets.
This Week's Magazine
Multinational semiconductor chipmaker corporation Intel announced its national campaign to further acquire partners to drive its She Will Connect programme, an initiative that aims to expand digital literacy skills to young women in developing countries, further into...
South Africa's MeerKAT radio telescope array programme should get back on schedule within a few months. This assurance has been given by SKA South Africa (SKA SA) associate director: science and technology Prof Justin Jonas. Early last month, Science and Technology...
The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA’s) Metrorail service will remain a subsidised service following its current multibillion-rand rolling stock, station, depot and signalling upgrade programme. PRASA group CEO Lucky Montana has allayed fears that...
The uncertainties around the remediation of affected areas as addressed in the Contaminated Land Provisions in the National Environmental Management: Waste Act No 59 of 2008 will possibly spark litigation and disputes between landowners and businesses, contractors...
South Africa is currently the largest component of the African Development Bank’s (AfDB’s) active portfolio in Southern Africa, comprising 62.5% of the bank’s $7.9-billion exposure to the 12-country region – the second largest beneficiary is Mauritius, which...