The Renewable Energy Festival was kicked off in Cape Town on Saturday with the aim of boosting the use of renewable energy as a solution to the energy, environment and unemployment crises in South Africa. renewable
The two-day festival, organized by the World Wide Fund South Africa (WWF-SA), came as the country is being haunted by worsening power shortages.
The WWF-SA said it wanted to take advantage to raise awareness about the importance of a renewable energy mix, which includes nuclear, wind and solor.
This was the second time that the Renewable Energy Festival is taking place in Cape Town.
The aim of the festival is to grow support for the use of renewable energy as a solution to South Africa’s triple crises of energy, environment and unemployment, organizers said.
Back by popular demand, the festival offers renewable energy industry players a platform to educate and sell their products to the public in a relaxed and engaging environment.
“This festival is to raise awareness for that and to ask government why we are not building more renewable energy?” said Alexis Scholtz, spokesperson of the festival.
The festival coincided with South Africa’s observance of the international environmental campaign, Earth Hour.
“There is perhaps no greater sales pitch for renewable energy solutions than the on-going blackouts, and consumers still need a lot of convincing to ensure they purchase the correct solution for their needs — domestic, small or big business,” the WWF-SA said.
“People are hungry for information and solutions — and the festival is the perfect showcase to demonstrate the benefits which your product, service or project offers.”
South Africa relies heavily on coal for more than 90 percent of its energy, with only about eight percent of renewable energy in its energy mix. Currently, a number of the country’s coal-burning power stations have collapsed due to poor maintenance, leading to constant blackouts across the country and prompting the country to spend billions of rand to buy diesel in order to keep the lights on.
The South African government is committed to providing 9,600 MW of nuclear power through a nuclear build programme in terms of the government integrated energy plan of 2010 to 2030.
The first of six new mini-nuclear plants is expected to come on stream by 2023.