South Africa government plans to introduce incentives for individuals and businesses to save electricity.

According to South Africa’s Electricity minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa, the South African government will provide a financial incentive for demand reduction by commercial and residential customers through its Distribution Demand Management programme.  

Speaking at a press briefing to provide an update on the country’s Energy Action Plan, Ramokgopa stated that the programme will provide a R3 million incentive for every megawatt saved through reduced demand.

“Demand-side interventions are going to be a focal point as we enter into December, because the initiatives at household level are cheaper and faster,” Ramokgopa said. “It’s aimed at ensuring that we are able to achieve the demand reduction during specified periods, and this will typically be during periods of peak [demand].”

The minister said the programme’s key performance indicator will be revealed once the government has “aggregated the number of households and companies that are participating.”

The incentive will be granted based on the relative reduction in usage to a verified baseline. All applicants will be subjected to an independent measurement against the baseline in order to prevent abuse of the incentive system.

Additionally, Ramokgopa stated that Eskom plans to bring 3,800MW of additional generation capacity onto the grid in the near future, with 400MW expected by the end of May 2023.

The government’s Integrated Resource Plan (IRP), gazetted in 2019, states that 78GW of energy capacity is needed by South Africa by 2030 – but the estimated costs involved, coupled with the underwhelming progress of government projects, suggests a bleak future for the country.

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