Jan 20, 2012
Energy deregulation could spur new businesses, industriesBack
Africa|Energy|Eskom|Jasco|Projects|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|Africa|Europe|Germany|South Africa|Able-energy Space|Energy|Energy Generation Market|Energy Industry|Energy Industry Knowledge|Energy Sector|Renewable-energy Generation Projects|Renewable-energy Projects|Telecommunications Industry|Pete Da Silva|Power|IP
© Reuse this
“The government is moving towards deregulation. The first independent power producers (IPPs) will come in the renew- able-energy space, including solar and wind. I hope to see an IPP in South Africa com- parable to cellular carriers Vodacom, Cell C or MTN.
“I believe the energy sector will follow a similar path to the telecommunications industry for the next 20 years,” he says.
The deregulation of the telecommunications industry took a long time, he emphasises, and Jasco expects a slow birth in the energy sector as well.
However, Da Silva encourages companies and government not to lose momentum and to move into larger-scale developments of renewable-energy projects.
“The management of [State-owned power utility] Eskom has called on corporate South Africa, industrialists, municipalities and IPPs to help it to achieve its goals.”
However, it is critical to ensure that the technical energy industry knowledge be developed and retained in South Africa, he says.
“We must be able to develop the know- how and ensure the sustainability of the industry.”
Further, lessons can be taken from other countries around the world and implemented in South Africa to shorten the period of development of renewable-energy generation projects.
Da Silva adds that smart electricity grids will draw on the information and communication technology industry’s knowledge of smart networks and the migration of the intelligence in the Internet protocol industry to energy.
“There are already examples of functioning smart grids in Europe and the world. We can learn from other countries what has and has not worked, such as the required form an independent power-buying body should take,” he says.
Da Silva encourages government and the Department of Energy to speed up and place as much urgency as possible on the deregulation of the energy industry because it is a catalyst for growth.
“Energy is needed to grow and we have to ensure that we have it in abundance so that investors, seeking secure, affordable power, will invest and build factories in South Africa,” he says.
He mentions that government’s three-year study for its renewable-energy feed-in-tariff programme, which was unceremoniously dumped for a bidding process, had wasted time. However, he concurs that implementation of an independent power production industry must be stable and sustainable to attract investment.
“In some Nordic countries, and specifically in Germany where there is less solar radiation than in South Africa, the country boasts fully functioning, large-scale solar photo- voltaic farms.
They have forced the development of the industry, enabling investment by setting a long-term, 20- to 30-year power purchase agreement with the farms, saying that they will buy all the electricity produced by these renewables projects.
“This type of bold statement enabled an industry to be built around it,” concludes Da Silva.
Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu© Reuse this Comment Guidelines
Other Information Technology News
Blue Label Telecoms, in conjunction with online partner Prepaid24, has launched a new mobile app to enable users to recharge electricity and airtime on the go and at any time. The Prepaid24 Mobile App, which is available for Android, Blackberry or Windows device...
Software-defined networking (SDN) is being applied at more than 30 projects in multiple industries worldwide to enable the real-time control and optimisation of data traffic on a fixed network infrastructure. These projects aim to create flexible and configurable...
Internet Protocol- (IP-) enabled network equipment will enable the creation of software-defined networks that can intelligently manage complex and converged future networks and the continuous growth of bandwidth demand. This is the view of Chinese technology giant...
Updated 3 hours ago The head of economics and trade at the Delegation of the European Union (EU) in Pretoria has acknowledged South Africa’s trade negotiators won important concessions in the long-running Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) trade talks. But he says it was South...
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...