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Insight into Energy Futures

Kofi Annan - Ghanaian diplomat who served as the seventh Secretary-General of the United Nations from January 1997 to December 2006.

“Climate change demands that we rethink the relationship between energy and development. The carbon-intensive energy systems that drive our economies have set us on a collision course with our planetary boundaries. We can avoid that collision. As a global community, we have the technology, finance and ingenuity to make the transition to a low-carbon future, but so far we lack the political leadership and practical policies needed to break the link between energy and emissions.

African nations do not have to lock into developing high-carbon old technologies; we can expand our power generation and achieve universal access to energy by leapfrogging into new technologies that are transforming energy systems across the world. Africa stands to gain from developing low-carbon energy, and the world stands to gain from Africa avoiding the high-carbon pathway followed by today’s rich world and emerging markets."

Tina Joemat-Pettersson - South African politician and the Minister of Energy

“The future of Africa is placed fairly and squarely in the hands of energy. The future of our country and continent is about infrastructure, good governance and low poverty… Today we have come to ensure that energy will not only alleviate poverty, but eradicate poverty completely. "

Marius Oosthuizen - Programme manager, Future of Business Project at GIBS

“A regional approach offers opportunities to leverage diverse national resource assets for cross-benefits between countries. South Africa’s energy challenges require a regional perspective rather than a singular or insular approach.

Given the right investment and research, South Africa could position itself to assist the rest of SADC to leapfrog other regions in exploiting renewable energy for instance socio-economic and environmental purposes."

Jonathan Robinson - Head of Project Finance, Middle East and North Africa at HSBC

“The challenge for renewables is that many of these markets need substantial amounts of power and they need it now.

A few wind turbines or solar plants can be built out relatively quickly, but it takes a lot longer and it is more expensive to build thousands of megawatts of renewables than it is to build a few oil or coal-fires power plants."

Eric le Grange - Director at ENSafrica in the projects department

“On the government side, there are certain policies in place that drive the uptake of new energy onto the grid – but in order to achieve this uptake, new resources need to be made available, new technologies must be explored and new capacity needs to be created. Private sector is sometimes restrained in its approach to these requirements because, typically, a private sector entity’s ownership of an energy infrastructure asset is time limited by the contractual arrangements that the private sector must strike with the particular national government. One must remember that the private sector is sensitive to pricing in the market. So if the policy process and implementation rules do not expedite development quickly enough, the private sector become less interested in investing in the development."

Dr Tony Surridge - Head of South African Centre for Carbon Capture and Storage (SACCCS)

“A new technology that is likely to be important for the region is Carbon Capture and Storage (“CCS”). CCS is a term referring to a family of technologies that permit the capture and transport of carbon dioxide emitted by industrial processes and the permanent sequestration of these emissions in geological formations or deep saline aquifers."

Ian Curry - Managing-Director of Basil Read Energy

“Storage of electricity will be a game changer for Southern Africa. A lot of currently perceived problems such grid-instability and consistency of power supply associated with the utilisation of renewable energy can be circumvented through storage of electricity."



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