02 April 2019, Johannesburg — In response to news that Eskom has signed a $180 million deal with the New Development Bank for the Renewable Energy Integration and Transmission Augmentation project, Greenpeace Africa has said:
“Greenpeace Africa welcomes the news that in the middle of the current electricity crisis, Eskom may have something resembling a plan to deal with the integration of renewable energy into the grid. While the loan is a fairly conservative start – only looking to integrate 670MW of renewable energy into the grid – it does at least take us a solid step in the right direction.
“South Africa needs to act swiftly in order to fully benefit from the potential of renewable energy. As a first step, the current barriers to renewable energy expansion must be removed. An energy system with the interests of South African citizens at its core is possible only if current barriers are removed and every South African is given a fair opportunity to contribute to a clean energy future.
“This investment must be used effectively to facilitate a shift away from dirty coal which, in recent months, has proven to be immensely unreliable and hazardous to the health of South Africans. Load shedding has had the South African economy in a chokehold, and Eskom’s emissions continue to cause thousands of premature deaths in Mpumalanga and Gauteng. Renewable energy investments can be rapidly deployed and scaled up, and are the clear solution to the current crisis. Eskom has an opportunity to finally shift away from coal and begin investing in renewable energy, and we hope it will not be wasted.”
Chris Vlavianos, Communications Officer – Greenpeace Africa, [email protected], 079 883 7036,