United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

South Africa

SOUTH AFRICAN STATEMENT TO THE 14TH SESSION OF THE
COMMISSION FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
Theme: Investing in energy and industrial development - challenges and
opportunities
UNITED NATIONS, NEW YORK
05 May 2006
INTRODUCTION
As a developing economy, growth is what we need to reduce poverty levels
and meet the MDG goals. There is a direct link between development and
investing in energy generation. Energy production for South Africa is heavily
dependent on coal resources. The challenge therefore is to invest in clean
coal technologies as well as implementing an appropriate mix of sustainable
energy production mechanisms. Objectives that have to be met in this regard
include shared access to energy, pollution reduction, energy efficiency
improvements, and diversification of the energy mix to include renewable
sources.
CONSTRAINTS AND CHALLENGES
The following are some of the constraints that we experience in our efforts to
meet the objectives above.
Backlogs in investment infrastructure to support sustainable
development
Lack of awareness of the benefits of sustainable energy usage both in
industry and at the residential setting
Unbalanced competition between renewable energy production and
fossil fuel production
Expensive technologies for cleaner energy production
Lack of widespread harmonization of energy efficiency standards and
labeling
Government will invest R372-billion over the next three years into various
infrastructure development projects, including investment to increase
electricity supply by the state. For the residential sector these investments will
target replacing illuminating Paraffin as a household fuel with LPG and bioethanol
gel as well as energy saving technologies. Government intends to
strengthen its R&D activities in solar, wind and bio -fuels work.
KEY CONSIDERATIONS FOR THE POLICY SESSION
Accelerating investments in best affordable energy technologies
Strengthening international and regional cooperation in cleaner production
efforts
Developing R&D networks to enhance innovative capacity and knowledge
Stakeholders