An initial strategy for meeting South Africa’s aviation biofuel requirements was expected to be released in the third quarter of this year, Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba said on Thursday.
Speaking at the launch of the Climate Change Policy Framework for State-owned companies (SOCs) in Centurion, he indicated that the Department of Public Enterprises convened a technical working group involving SOCs, relevant government departments and agencies to develop an effective supply chain strategy.
Partly driving the growth in demand for biofuels in South Africaindications were that South African Airways (SAA) would require that biofuels make up half its fuel supply by 2020 to avoid future penalties.
“This will create a pressing demand for an extremely large quantity of biofuels, which can form a baseload against which a fully vertically integrated biofuels industry can develop in South Africa and in the region,” the Minister said in his address.
He added that the State-owned South African Forestry Company had been developing intellectual property that could support the process.
Operating in the global market, SAA was consequently vulnerable to policies in countries that impose penalties and taxes on carbon emissions. In the short term, the airline was exploring the implementation of a voluntary carbon offset project that could support the development of forestry.