Renewable Energy Research

“The main constraints [to renewables] are neither resource availability nor techno-economics but a limiting mindset focused on the supply-side, partial energy costing, low (indirectly subsidised) energy prices and short-term thinking favouring low initial costs. Dominance of the state-controlled power monopoly and the influence of vested interests (particularly of the minerals sector) on key stakeholders are exacerbated by a lack of awareness and informed leadership as well as a real shortage of person power. It is concluded that the most important constraint is not money, men, machines, materials or management, but the motivation, the inspired political will.

–Jason Schaffler 2008, Renewable Energy Briefing

It is possible for South Africa to have a renewable energy future and 50% of all electricity can come from renewable sources by 2050. The following are key SECCP documents that outline this future. Please click on the relevant link to download the document.

  1. The Renewable Energy Briefing 2008 is a 30-page report that outlines the technical case for renewable energy. As of August 2008, this was the latest research in the field.
  2. A White Paper on Energy Policy in South Africa (DME, 1998)
  3. A study titled Job Creation Potential of Renewable Energy in South Africa analyses the job-creation potential of renewable energy in South Africa and gives guidelines to boost national and regional development similar to the one achieved by Germany.
  4. The Potential for Renewable Energy in South Africa (2006) (1.8MB) remains one of the most authoritative research documents on Renewable Energy in South Africa.

Earthlife Africa’s Johannesburg branch was founded in 1988 to mobilise civil society around environmental issues in relation to people.