Renewable energy technologies for poverty alleviationSouth Africa: solar water heaters and biodiesel: Executive summary iii
ENERGY RESEARCH CENTRE
African Petroleum Industry Association, farmers, oil companies and unions. A biodiesel standardhas been completed with the assistance of the South African Bureau of Standards, and the JIC isdeveloping a pricing model for the local biodiesel industry.The initial assessment identifies problems which RE technologies generally face and the specific problems of SWH and biodiesel development and dissemination. There are also problems relatingmore generally to the economy, the supply industry and development issues such as security of supply, unemployment, poverty or black economic empowerment.The methodology of the multi-country RET study describes a problem as a situation that isconsidered negative and if the situation is addressed it could lead to positive development; objectivesoutline the desired and feasible situation at which the application of policy is aiming. Themethodology starts by analysing a situation and identifying problems that could affect thedevelopment of renewable energy technologies. The objectives identify the desired outcome and the policy outline indicates the way to address the problem.The seven most important problems are identified in the table below.
Problems, objectives and policy outlines for SWH
Problem Objective Policy outline
High upfront capital costand the absence of affordable financingschemes discourage theinstallation of SWH.SWH companies and other players offer attractivefinancing schemes and manyhouseholds and thecommercial sector areinstalling SWH.Facilitating attractive financingschemes.Expanding markets for SWH.2.
Many people don’t knowabout or have a negative perception of SWH.Information, education andquality assurance haveconvinced people of the benefits of SWH.Supporting information andeducation programmes.Encouraging research onevaluating the benefits andlimitations of SWH.Implementing quality assuranceand standards.3.
Electricity peak loaddemand will be greater than generation capacity bythe year 2007.SWHs reduce peak load.Reducing peak electricitydemand by expanding SWHmarket. City by-laws makingSWH installations in new housesmandatory.4.
South Africa has one of thehighest GHG emissionrates because electricity isgenerated from coal-fired power stations.Solar water heaters replaceelectric geysers and water heating on stoves reducingGHG emissions.Facilitating the replacement of electric geysers by SWH andsupporting the installation of new SWH.Reducing GHG emissions for water heating.5.
High unemployment rateslimit socio-economicdevelopment.Employment is created inmanufacturing, installing andservicing SWH.Encouraging and supportingmanufacturing SWH for employment generation.Training in SWH manufacturing,installation and maintenance.6.
The poor live in shacks andhouses with insufficientservice provision. Even if they have an electricityconnection they cannotafford to use it for water heating.SWH are installed in allhousing projects for the poor,employment is created.Subsidising capital expenditureon SWH for the poor.Improving quality of life byfacilitating SWH for people insocial housing.