Source: Department of Energy
Title: SA: Peters: Address by the Minister of Energy, at the launch of the save it, Mix-it game, Vryburg
Honourable, Premier of the North West, Ms Maureen Modiselle
Honourable MEC for Education of the, Reverend Johannes, Tselapedi
Honourable Mayor of Vryburg, Councillor, Ms Ruth Segomotsi Mompati
The school governing body
The Principal and staff of the Tygerkloof Combined School
Our esteemed learners
Ladies and gentlemen
Good morning to you all
Setswana se a re, "Maropeng go a boelwa, go sa boelweng ke teng"
I am extremely delighted to be here in Vryburg today, especially at a school of the stature of Tygerkloof Combined School.
This school has a history spanning from 1904, since it was founded by Reverend WC Willoughby when he arrived on board a borrowed ox wagon and started to build a school.
You will recall that after the discovery of diamonds and gold (key mineral resources that underpin our economy, even today, over 100 years later) and the building of a railway between Victoria Falls and Kimberley, the London Missionary Society (LMS) decided to open a school that was more accessible to students than the Kuruman Mission where the first schoolroom north of the Orange River was built in 1829.
In Setswana, TygerKloof is also known as moeding the place of running water, an oasis in the desert. This school would become known as a school of presidents and carpenters. This is a school that many in modern times are yet to emulate what this school has been over the past 100 years.
From its inception the school committed itself to excellence in academic and technical training. With the appointment of the Reverend A J Haile as principal in 1914, the school expanded to become a centre for elementary, higher and specialised education with a teachers' training college, a bible school for the training of ministers and an industrial school incorporating domestic science, spinning and weaving, masonry, carpentry, leatherwork and tailoring. It this context, Tygerkloof became a real oasis of educational excellence, an institute of marvel and admiration for the benefit of the world.
We are also aware that Tygerkloof Combined School is part of the Dinaledi programme, a government programme promoting maths and science. So, again, Tygerkloof is leading the pack.
This is a special school indeed that has contributed immensely for the emancipation of the Southern African community. You may recall that in addition to many craftspeople, teachers and religious ministers that the school has produced, Sir Seretse Khama and Sir Ketumile Masire, the first and second presidents of Botswana, were also educated here. This included almost the entire first cabinet of government of Botswana and other alumni who reached high office in several African countries.
You are also blessed to be under the leadership of a product of this proud community, Mme Ruth Mompati, Mayor of Vryburg, a luminary of our struggle.
So you must understand the excitement that we have as the Ministry and the Department of Energy to be associated with you. Today, we have come not only to nurture our future leaders and revitalise our common heritage, we have come a long way to enhance the school's technological advantage and launch something akin to landing man on the moon in the energy sector context. We have come to launch an energy Efficiency programme. I will talk to that a bit later.
Following from its colonial masters, South Africa has depended on electricity as a driver for its industrial revolution. Kimberly became the first town in the African continent to use electric street lights, the first of which was lit on 1 September 1882. The growth of the mining sector became possible on the back of a robust electricity sector until today, where almost all our energy need are met from electricity.
This is of course not the way the rest of the world is going. Most of the industrialised nations use a variety of energy sources, from electricity, biogas, natural gas and renewable source of energy such as hydro electric, solar and wind. In addition to transformational policies that we established as the democratic government since coming into power in 1994, we have developed a White Paper on Energy Policy in 1998, to guide the energy policy direction of the country.
In 2003, we launched a renewable energy policy and an energy efficiency policy in 2004. These policies have become the guiding documents of our sustainable development, in the sense that they provide a policy framework for the socio-economic and environmental development of the country from the energy perspective.
South Africa has a high intensity of energy use. The events of 2007 to 2008 where the country experienced load shedding epitomised the challenge that we have of depending on a single source of energy and not to use other energy available as efficiently as possible.
We have launched a number of programmes to encourage electricity consumers to use electricity more efficiently. These include the Compact Fluorescent Lighting (CFL) campaign for the domestic sector, the industrial energy efficiency programme which seeks to encourage industry to use energy efficient appliances such as motors, air conditioning and ventilation systems, fuel switching from say electric boilers to gas fired ones, public institutions like yourselves to switch off unused lights, use solar water heaters instead of heating water though coal or electricity.
We have also noted that one of the biggest challenges that we have is human behaviour. Our attitude as ordinary consumers to energy efficiency cannot happen on its own. People need to see and experience the benefits of saving energy, buy-in to the concept of energy efficiency, they must see the benefit of energy efficiency to themselves and the world at large, the fact that energy efficiency does not mean the change in output.
As the government department responsible for the energy sector, we have taken it upon ourselves to create public awareness that is both sustainable and enduring.
It is against that background that we have identified institutions of learning like the Tygerkloof Combined School as part of the partnership between the department and the institute of learning that will revolutionaries the minds of the youth, and by extension, the communities they live in, and ultimately lead in the future.
Mogologolo wa Motswana o a tle a re "Botlhale jwa phala bo tswa pahalaneng, Phala e senang phalana, lesilo". Most of our parents are not technology literate. They depend on us to set up their cell phone, search for information on the internet, do electronic banking, etc. The world depends on its youth as pathfinders in the maze of technological advancement and sustainable development.
The National Energy Efficiency Campaign was launched on the 2 December 2008 and phase 1 concluded on 30 June 2009. During this project phase the following deliverables were part of the overall campaign strategy:
* Establishment of a unique and identifiable brand for energy efficiency that can be used throughout our campaign. "Save it!" was adopted and will be the central theme used throughout our internal, public relations, media and advertising initiatives
* Implementing an advertising programme with the creative rationale as energy addicts, join us on the road to recovery. This was published on billboards and building wraps. You may have come across these in towns and cities you have visited lately
* Public relations programme ensuring that the above is supported by various media releases and press coverage, as well as the publication of specific editorials
* The campaign was driven from the Presidency and Ministerial programme where the Deputy President and the previous Minister of Minerals and Energy were energy champions of specific initiatives
* Internal programme where energy efficiency was communicated internally to all government departments by means of specific articles.
* Digital Programme which involved the development of a micro site http://www.savingenergy.co.za and the development of a computer game that will ensure that energy efficiency behaviour awareness is created with our youth
* This game can be downloaded free from the energy efficiency micro-website (http://www.savingenergy.co.za) and also downloaded from Mix-it to a cell-phone.
Following from the aforesaid, "save it!" is an Energy Efficiency Campaign that we have come to launch today. The essence of today's launch is a Mix-it computer game.
Therefore, the objective of today's event is to achieve the following objectives:
* To raise awareness of the save it! Game which will be available on the web and Mix-it
* To provide information about the National Energy Efficiency Campaign
* To illustrate the role and participation of government in saving energy
* Actively involve the youth in the campaign, allowing them to share messages of energy saving/wastage to their parents, other adults and peers.
We want to draw your attention and ask for your co-operation in:
* the National Energy Efficiency Campaign for the mobilisation of South Africans to be more aware of their energy usage in light of the current energy crisis
* to showcases what various stakeholders are successfully or innovatively doing to be more energy efficient
* showing how every South African can become more energy efficient.
We want you to join the "save it!" campaign and join South Africa's energy efficiency movement so that:
* all households and business must take consistent action to save energy
* a change of our energy consumption mind-sets and behaviours will go a long way to protecting a sustainable energy supply in South Africa
* government, in partnership with industry, business and energy stakeholders will continue to develop new sources of electricity as rapidly as possible.
We want you to "save it!" and unlock energy cost savings in your home
* It is easy to save energy in your home, through simple and practical changes to energy consumption habits
* Three quick and easy ways to conserve energy in the home are to turn down your geyser to 55 degrees, switch off appliances (ghost appliances) not being used at the wall and unplug them and switch to CFL's, from incandescent light bulbs.
We want you to "save it!" and be more environmentally friendly:
* Being energy efficient reduces our country's carbon emissions, making us a more environmentally friendly South Africa.
We want you to "save it!" and inspire those around you to save energy and make a difference to the future of our country:
* Every little bit counts and together, we will make the difference.
Programme director, by working together we can ensure that this campaign becomes successful. Our collective resolve and commitment can ensure that we succeed and like many times before making a positive contribution to the continent and the world that we as Tygerkloof Combined School have come to be known, to be innovators, leaders and trend setters.
I am looking forward to meeting some of you in the future as leaders and experts who are fully grounded on the issues of energy and sustainable development.
Thank you very much for being part of this process.
Thank you for being willing to venture into territories unknown to many of the schooling fraternity.
And thank you for demonstrating that indeed, working together, we are doing more!
Kea le boga.