Responding to the media statement made by new Minister of Energy Jeff Radebe today, announcing that the project agreements of the 27 Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Projects (REIPPP) - including the power purchase agreements with Eskom - will be signed on Tuesday 13 March 2018, Melita Steele, Greenpeace Africa’s Senior Campaign Manager, has said:
“Greenpeace welcomes the statement made today by the Minister of Energy, confirming that the extended period of uncertainty for renewable energy might just be coming to an end. Government is beginning to recognise the critical role that renewable energy can play both in driving economic development and in creating a better future through job creation for the people of South Africa.
We do however note with concern that the Minister has also authorised the signing of 2 coal IPP projects. Greenpeace believes this conflicts with his statements about ‘ensuring optimal resource allocation and utilisation in the energy-water nexus’. More water-hungry coal plants will steal what little water we have for polluting coal projects that we don’t need.
The Minister is correct in emphasising policy and regulatory certainty is key. We trust that he will follow this up by taking the necessary steps to ensure that the long overdue Integrated Energy Plan (IEP) and Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) will be released in the near future. Furthermore, these plans need to take into account our commitments in terms of climate change, and the severe levels of water scarcity in South Africa.
Without these plans, we will continue to be stuck in the past. Making choices based on outdated information and assumptions is absurd, and leads us on a coal and nuclear-fuelled highway to nowhere. We are long overdue for fresh plans and a fresh approach to ensuring a clean energy future for all.”
Issued by Greenpeace