Jul 19, 2012
SA needs competition in electricity generation, transmissionBack
Johannesburg|Africa|System|Systems|Africa|South Africa|Electricity|Electricity Crisis|Electricity Generation|Electricity Status Quo|Energy|Energy Crisis|Gross Domestic Product|Power Generation|Power-generation|Product|Systems|Doug Kuni|Leon Louw|Power
© Reuse this
South Africa needed an independently owned and operated transmission grid, independent power producers (IPPs) and market trade in electricity.
He said at a media briefing in Johannesburg that the government’s New Growth Path would not be possible under the current electricity status quo. “We are losing a potential 3.3% to 3.5% gross domestic product as a result.”
South Africa’s Independent Power Producers Association (SAIPPA) MD Doug Kuni said South Africa was facing an electricity crisis, which if left unresolved, would cost the economy billions of rands, government in growing the economy and creating jobs.
“Electricity is now being taken out of the productive sector in this country, and taken out of the economy. The smelters are being shut down, or encouraged to shut down,” he said.
Kuni also noted that economic drivers such as mines, manufacturers and property developers had to rein in potential developments and expansion as a result of the energy crisis.
Citing the National Treasury and the Department of Trade and Industry, he said that for every unserved kilowatt hour (kWh), the country was losing R75/kWh. “We are short of 5 000 MW of energy in the country at the moment, and this amount, not served as energy and its value to the economy, equates to R3.3-trillion a year. This is an astronomical figure,” he noted.
Kuni said electricity policy, legislation and regulations had to work in concert to achieve desired outcomes, which included the immediate generation of electricity. He lamented that, where legal interpretations offered different applications, the outcome was confusion and uncertainty, which discouraged IPPs from investing in additional power capacity.
He stated that the amended Electricity Regulation Act did not encourage companies to be independent power producers in South Africa, while the Independent System and Market Operator bill did not deliver an independent systems management operator.
“The white paper policy document of 1998 and the electricity master plan of 2007 explicitly state that competition is a policy in the country, and so is customer choice of electricity. The amended act now excludes a willing buyer/seller and it does it surreptitiously, while wheeling is not even mentioned. The licensing requirements from private or own-use power generation are now subject to Ministerial approval and there are no prescripts for how Ministerial approval is actually made.”
Edited by: Mariaan Webb© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Creamer Media Senior Researcher and Deputy Editor Online
Other Electricity News
Recent Research Reports
Steel 2015: A review of South Africa's steel sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Steel 2015 report provides an overview of the key developments in the global steel industry and particularly of South Africa’s steel sector over the past year, including details of production and consumption, as well as the country's primary carbon...
Projects in Progress 2015 - First Edition (PDF Report)
In fact, this edition of Creamer Media’s Projects in Progress 2015 supplement tracks developments taking place under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, which has had four bidding rounds. It appears to remain a shining light on the...
Electricity 2015: A review of South Africa's electricity sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Electricity 2015 report provides an overview of State-owned power utility Eskom and independent power producers, as well as electricity planning, transmission, distribution and the theft thereof, besides other issues.
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
This Week's Magazine
While strongly welcoming the promulgation of the new Part 101 of South Africa’s civil aviation regulations, governing the commercial operation of civil remotely piloted aircraft (RPAs) in South Africa, the Commercial Unmanned Aircraft Association of Southern Africa...
LSM Distributors has contracted engineering consultancy WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff Africa to undertake the R100-million restoration of the 54-year-old Kyalami racetrack, situated in Midrand. The restoration will assist in re-establishing it as a venue for...
South African Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula has expressed the hope that the defence budget will be significantly increased over the next five years. She did so while addressing the media in her recent budget vote media briefing. The 2015/2016 defence...
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has been an implementing agency for the Global Environment Facility (GEF) since 2008. The relatively young portfolio has 28 projects over 30 countries on the continent according to the 2014 AfDB and GEF annual report released...
Investment in South African youth through apprenticeships and learnerships will not only create direct benefits for businesses but will also contribute significantly to job creation and socioeconomic transformation in the country.