News & events


Challenges of Climate Change, “low hanging fruits” and localisation of the renewable energy industry: The case of South Africa’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP)

08 September 2015
12:30 - 13:30

Dr Tidings P. Ndhlovu – Manchester Metropolitan University, UK, and  Visiting Research Fellow, Graduate School of Business Leadership, University of South Africa
Ms Ntombifuthi Ntuli  – Director: Renewable Energy Industries, Industrial Development & Policy Division, Department of Trade and Industry (dti), South Africa

Date:  Tuesday, 8 September    
12:30  – 13:30
Venue:    VCRs, Pretoria, Cape Town, Durban

The HSRC seminar series is funded by the Department of Science and Technology (DST). The views and opinions expressed therein as well as findings and statements of the seminar series do not necessarily represent the views of DST.


There is a general consensus that global warming is taking place and, in particular, that an excess of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is human induced (Ndhlovu, 2013: 15-19; 27-31). Many schemes have been proffered for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, such as market-based carbon trading (“cap and trade”, and “offsetting”), without much success. Given the realisation that untrammelled growth (“unlimited growth”) cannot be sustained, emphasis has thus shifted towards “sustainable development” that is set against the triple bottom line which encompasses financial, environmental and social business performance (Ntuli, 2014: 199; also see Ndhlovu, 2009).

As such, South Africa is currently going through a transition and gradually recognising the need to de-couple environmental degradation from economic growth. There is also a growing realisation within the country that environmental sustainability and climate change responses should not be seen as a liability but, rather, an opportunity for creation of new economic opportunities, thus job creation. It is in this light that, in the Green Economy Accord (2011), government committed itself to kick-starting the renewable energy procurement programme with a 3725 MW target, while all signatories committed to “support efforts to increase local industrial manufacture of components for renewable energy” (Green Economy Accord, 2011). This commitment was concretised by the Renewable Energy (RE) industry’s clear goal of 75% localization and 50, 000 green jobs by 2020, of which 6,500 will be engineers (Ntuli, 2012: 44-47).

It remains to be seen how far this more people-centred approach will deliver in terms of a new cleaner industry, substantial “green jobs” along the value chain, decentralisation (democratisation), reduction of energy costs for the poor and a greener environment. What is clear is that a different and more promising approach is likely to address problems of the environment, employment and poverty.
It is against this background that this seminar seeks to assess the success of the renewable energy localisation initiative within South Africa’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP).

The seminar may be attended in Pretoria, Cape Town or Durban

RSVP by 7 September
Cape Town: Carmen August (021) 466 7827,   12th Floor, Plein Park Building, Plein Street, Cape Town
Durban: Ridhwaan Khan (031) 242 5400,   1st Floor, 750 Francois Road, Ntuthuko Junction, Pods 5 and 6, Cato Manor
Pretoria: Arlene Grossberg (012) 302 2811,  1st  Floor, HSRC Building, 134 Pretorius Street, Pretoria