African National Congress (ANC) President, Cyril Ramaphosa, has reiterated the importance of the country moving towards the use of renewable energy. The ANC’s National Executive Committee convened a two-day Lekgotla in Johannesburg.
United States (US) Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen last week visited South Africa and recommitted the world’s largest economy to helping South Africa in its multi-billion dollar just transition from coal to renewables.
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen visits power plant in Emalahleni:
This comes amid Eskom’s continuous implementation of rolling blackouts, with the country currently enduring Stages 2 to 4 power cuts.
Ramaphosa gave his opening remarks at the Lekgotla.
“There has been a legend or a story that we are moving towards closing coal-fired power stations. I have personally made it clear to some world leaders that I interact with that there is just no way that we are going to close those power stations. Those that are reaching the end of their lives, they will be recalibrated and repurposed as we move towards renewable energy.”
Ramaphosa says for now the country’s objective is to decrease rolling blackouts to lower levels.
He has however warned that interventions that have been proposed will take sometime to take effect.
South Africa is currently enduring stage two and four rolling blackouts – but was recently subject to stage six rolling blackouts.
Ramaphosa has elaborated on some of the interventions that he says are meant to reduce the rolling blackouts.
“Many people have lost hope of finding employment. The youth are especially negatively affected with nearly a third of young people between 15-24 who are not employed or in training.”
ANC NEC Lekgotla I Ramaphosa touches on some of the interventions to reduce load shedding: