WWF research demonstrates renewable energy growth opportunities in SA | WWF South Africa

WWF research demonstrates renewable energy growth opportunities in SA



Posted on 29 August 2014
WWF-SA has commissioned a series of reports examining the state of renewable energy in South Africa, the ways in which it can be scaled up, with particular emphasis on financing, and how renewable energy has the potential to grow beyond government’s efforts.
© Kevin Schafer / WWF
The World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa (WWF-SA) has always advocated in favour of renewable energy as a necessity to combatting climate change and increasingly expensive fossil-fuel generated electricity. Our previous work has shown that investing in renewable energy, together with energy efficiency in industry, will provide cheaper electricity by 2020 than further investment in coal or nuclear power. Continuing our work in this space, WWF-SA has commissioned a series of reports examining the state of renewable energy in South Africa, the ways in which it can be scaled up, with particular emphasis on financing, and how renewable energy has the potential to grow beyond government’s efforts.

Enabling Renewable Energy in South Africa: Assessing the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme outlines the REIPPPP bidding process that has mobilised over R100 billion in renewable energy investment, largely from the private sector in less than three years. The report discusses the key aspects of the REIPPPP bidding process from various stakeholders’ perspectives, highlighting and exploring the significant successes, challenges and developments that have emerged since the inception of the programme. Key non-financial themes covered include the price discovery process, the impact of the ambitious pace of the programme, grid connection challenges and local content requirements. New light is shed on financial aspects of REIPPPP, including the management of foreign exchange and interest rate risk, BBBEE financing vehicles and ways in which funding sources can be diversified.

Malango Mughogho, Sustainable Finance Programme Manager WWF-SA: “REIPPPP is a clear indication of the government’s intention to address climate change mitigation in the energy sector. Critically analysing the programme so far will allow a better understanding of the practical implications of scaling renewable energy generation in the electricity sector to 100% by 2050, thereby allowing South Africa to contribute its fair share to climate change mitigation”.

Renewable Energy Vision 2030 – South Africa is the first in a two-part report describing the current state of play in the renewable energy independent power producer sector in South Africa. It reports on the technology allocation of contracted projects, the current capital cost per kWh of renewable energy supplied by different renewable energy technologies, the high-level projected capital cost trajectory of these different technologies and the estimated capital cost of supplying South Africa’s 2030 renewable energy ambition.

Manisha Gulati, WWF-SA Energy Economist: “The IRP needs to look at renewable energy more seriously if it intends to meet the immediate electricity requirement and improve electricity affordability. This should be accompanied by firmer policy positions on renewables, in particular a longer term renewable energy procurement plan.”

Corporate Renewable Energy Procurement in South Africa, implements a survey and case study approach to establish the quantity and type of renewable energy demand in South Africa by companies that are not independent power producers and to identify the top five drivers for this demand. The research details existing and planned voluntary renewable energy purchases above 3 MW by companies across a wide selection of industries, demonstrating that these companies consider renewable energy a critical strategic and financial consideration that warrants investment. Additional policy mechanisms that support these drivers will allow South Africa to leverage the private sector to meet its climate change mitigation needs.