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africa|business|copper|energy|generators|power|projects|renewable-energy|resources|storage|infrastructure|cables

Business outlines 10-point plan for unlocking 15 GW of new electricity capacity

Cas Coovadia

Cas Coovadia

14th July 2022

By: Terence Creamer

Creamer Media Editor

     

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Business Unity South Africa (Busa) has outlined a set of ten interventions that it believes could unlock much-needed investment into new generation and storage capacity over the coming two years and should be included as part of President Cyril Ramaphosa's comprehensive plan for tackling load-shedding, which is expected to be unveiled soon.

The Busa intervention envisages the introduction of 15 GW of additional generation capacity, together with 4 GW of battery storage, over a 24-month period.

The organisation calculates that 3 GW of that will be supplied by Eskom, while a further 3.5 GW will arise from ongoing procurement programmes and as a result of policy reforms.

Busa believes the 9 GW balance, which would involve investments of about R170-billion, could be unlocked through the following interventions:

  • Resolving embedded generation registration and licensing issues, and accelerating the time it takes to get applications approved;
  • Unblocking red tape constraining private sector investment in generation capacity;
  • Removing caps on registering self-generation projects;
  • Suspending local-content rules until the energy crisis has been averted;
  • Increasing the regularity and size of rounds for renewable energy procured through the Independent Power Producer Office;
  • Establishing an emergency feed-in tariff framework to enable Eskom to buy power from existing generators;
  • Resolving bottlenecks in the transmission infrastructure to unlock additional generation capacity;
  • Developing a unified and scalable wheeling framework;
  • Developing a public-private transmission partnership framework to speed up build times; and
  • Urgently addressing sabotage at Eskom, and the theft of copper cables.

“We hope that the President’s announcement will provide a clear path, with deadlines, that demonstrate the urgency with which the proposed actions will be implemented,” CEO Cas Coovadia said in a statement.

“Once it is announced, we would like to see a joint government and business working team configured and deployed to focus on delivering results against hard deadlines.

“This includes working towards deliverables that are communicated regularly, both to the President and to the public,” Coovadia added.

During the height of the Covid crisis business worked with government on a range of interventions, including the acquisition of vaccines, and Business for South Africa's (B4SA's) steering committee, which coordinated business’ actions, has been re-mobilised as Busa’s implementation arm.

“Business is ready to intensify its participation and deploy its expertise, capacity and resources to support the President and assist government to stabilise the country’s energy sector,” B4SA steering committee chair Martin Kingston said.

“The sooner the conditions for investment are in place, the sooner the country will be able to unlock the funding needed,” Kingston added.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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