Archive for the ‘Energy saving’ Category


Video – Helen Zille endorses Earth Hour

9 March 2009

DA MP joins cross party initiative to introduce feed in tariffs for renewables.

29 October 2008

Renewable energy is much spoken about in South Africa, although there never seems to be any progress. It is frustrating to watch the South African government plan massive investments into coal and nuclear which will lock this country into a particular (mostly uncertain) energy future while there are at the same time numerous other technologies that need a small leg up, but can then flourish on their own.

A couple of MPs from various parties have decided to take a stand on this matter. Dr Ruth Rabinowitz (IFP), myself (DA), Lance Greyling (ID) and Judy Chalmers (ANC) have come up with a private members legislative proposal aimed at introducing Feed In Tariffs for renewable energy production. The proposal has gone forward in the name of Dr Rabinowitz. Read the rest of this entry ?


Carbon taxes could open the door for greater investment in renewable energy

4 August 2008

The Democratic Alliance last week welcomed the announcement by Cabinet of a policy framework on climate change – most notably the announcement that a new series of carbon taxes will likely be introduced.

“South Africa is one of the most carbon-intensive countries in the world and it is incumbent on this country to reduce its emissions in the future in order to play its role in stabilising the world’s climate,” said DA environmental affairs spokesman Gareth Morgan.

While cautious of the additional costs placed on business by carbon taxes, Morgan said they were essential for the creation of a price for carbon, which was a prerequisite for creating a carbon market. He added that they should be introduced gradually to allow businesses to adjust, and in conjunction with other fiscal measures that would reduce the costs of doing business in South Africa.

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Parliamentary question on daylight saving as a means of saving energy

20 May 2008

DA environmental affairs spokesperson Gareth Morgan asked the following question about daylight saving as a means of conserving energy during peak periods:

Mr. G Morgan (DA) to ask the Minister of Minerals and Energy:

Whether a study has been done to assess the viability of instituting a daylight saving; if not, why not; if so what are the relevant details .

Whether there is any intention to institute daylight saving; if not why not; if so () when will it be instituted and (b) what are the cost implications of such an initiative.

This is the minister’s reply:

Studies were conducted on daylight savings, in 1986 by CSIR and ESKOM did a study in 2006. The conclusions of the studies was that there will not be any significant impact on the energy consumption, either in the reduction on the peak demand or reduction on the base-load power, as a result of introduction of daylight saving.  It is accepted that the studies are now dated and as such a need for a new study has been identified.

The current position may be reconsidered if the new study by Eskom, which has been commissioned by the Department of Public Enterprises, recommends such. This will take into account attendant potential socio-economic impacts on a national scale and provide a cost-benefit analysis.  This study is expected to be completed by June 2008.


Energy Efficiency needs to be promoted for a Sustainable Future

14 March 2008

Gareth Morgan MPThe efficient use of energy needs to become a permanent phenomenon by both business and individual consumers. Cheap electricity generated by burning our abundant dirty coal resources has resulted in South Africans becoming exceptionally wasteful.

Up until now there have been few incentives or penalties created in order to alter the way we consume electricity. Meanwhile, the true cost of generation has been passed on to the communities that reside in the vicinity of power stations – in the form of health ailments – or to the environment in general, in the form of human-induced climate change.

Government has responded to the current electricity crisis by threatening action against consumers that do not cut back their consumption in the near future. While demand-side interventions, including energy efficiency and conservation, are among the obvious requirements needed to alleviate the current state of affairs, it should not have taken a crisis situation to induce government into action. The problem with forcing energy efficiency on consumers under such conditions is that it creates resentment. Many South Africans may understandably be wondering why they have to take the hit when it was government that created this mess in the first place. Read the rest of this entry ?


CFLs in plain english

12 March 2008

You might have come across these “in plain english” videos on YouTube before, but we found one about Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs, or CFLs. It uses US figures to illustrate the benefits, but the principle is still the same.

Have you made the switch?