It is becoming increasing clear that Eskom has turned its back on the future and the city of Cape Town is fully justified in demanding the right to buy cheaper electricity from Independent Power Producers, says the Cape Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Ms Janine Myburgh, President of the Chamber, said she was shocked when Eskom said it would no longer sign any agreements to buy renewable energy.
“The simple fact of the matter is that the electricity from the new power stations will cost between R1.05 cents to R1.20 a unit while electricity from PV solar and wind will cost between 60 and 80 cents a unit. It is irrational to deny cities the right to buy clean energy at nearly half the price of power from dirty coal-fired power stations,” she said.
“What we should be working on are gas power stations to support renewables and ways to store solar electricity for night use. We already have the Steenbras Pump Storage scheme and batteries will soon be available.”
The Chamber fully supported the Mayor’s demand to let Cape Town buy the electricity Eskom does not want. Ms Myburgh said the City was also right in demanding the break-up of the Eskom monopoly which had now become inefficient and unreliable.
Eskom did not seem to understand that all the power we could ever use was available from that great big nuclear fusion reactor in the sky which we call the sun. “Being able to turn sunlight into electrity is the ultimate technological miracle of our time but Eskom wants to cling to the dark days of dirty coal. It is mind-boggling.”
She said the whole electricity industry was at the dawn of a new day and Cape Town understood this and should be allowed to pioneer the way for other cities and the country. “The age of renewables is creating new industries, jobs and cheaper electricity. We can only hope that NERSA the Government understand this.”