Round up of South African renewables news

The launch of SARi on December 7th in Durban came amid a flurry of other developments and announcements during and in the run up to COP 17:



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South African Renewables Initiative launches with partnership between South Africa, Denmark, Germany, Norway, UK and EIB.

The South African Minister of Energy, Ms. Elizabeth Dipuo Peters and the Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr. Rob Davies, launched an international partnership with partner Governments, and the European Investment Bank, in a bid to scale-up and secure long-term funding to enable the growth of the renewable energy industry in South Africa.

Joining Minister Peters in signing the SARi Declaration of Intent, during the COP17 climate change meetings in Durban  were

  • Martin Lidegaard, Minister for Climate, Energy and Building, Government of Denmark.
  • Dr. Horst Freitag, Ambassador Designate to South Africa, (representing Norbert Röttgen, Federal Minister for Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.
  • Erik Solheim, Minister of the Environment and International Development, For the Government of Norway.
  • Dame Nicola Brewer, High Commissioner to South Africa (representing Chris Huhne, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland).
  • Simon Brooks, Vice-President, For the European Investment Bank Continue reading
Posted in Climate Change, COP 17, Green Growth, Industrial Policy, International Funding, SARi, Uncategorized

State President, Jacob Zuma highlights SARi at the World Climate Summit in Durban

Ladies and gentlemen, As we noted, the biggest barriers to developing renewable energy in Africa to date are not technological, but financial. In that regard, South Africa has been hard at work in the development and design of financial instruments aligned to our national plans for green growth.

During the course of COP 17 we will be launching a key initiative that could kick-start major development for renewable energy generation and industrial development. The South African Renewable Initiative (SARi) funding mechanism will help us unlock South Africa’s green growth potential through the funding of large-scale renewable developments. This will be achieved with the assistance of global partners – donors and Governments, who will provide innovative funding solutions to facilitate it. Renewable energy still costs more than non-renewable energy, which in South Africa is largely supplied by cheap, abundant coal supplies. It is estimated that the renewables’ targets indicated in our Integrated Resource Plan 2010 would add an average incremental cost of around 660 million US dollars to South Africa’s annual electricity bill up to the year 2044. The SARi model will enable us to deal with the high cost through low cost loans and other financial instruments combined with time limited pay-for-performance grants.

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South African Renewables Initiative Launch planned for December 7

The South African Renewables Initiative (SARi) will be launched on December 7th at 1900, in Durban, as part of South Africa’s hosting of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Seventeeth Conference of the Parties (COP 17/CMP 7).

The event, hosted by Minister Rob Davies and Minister Dipuo Peters, will highlight SARi’s approach and its role in supporting the scale up of renewable energy in South Africa, and will include inputs from international founding partners as well as a chance to ask questions.

If you would like an invitation to the event please contact Adele Faasen at

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SA Cabinet Announces SARi to Launch at COP 17 in Durban

The South African Cabinet formally approved the launch of SARi during the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Conference of the Parties (COP17), which will take place in Durban from November 28 to 9 December 2011. The launch of SARi will be accompanied by the announcement of partnerships between the South African Government and international governments and Development Finance Institutions who will work together to explore possibilities for developing the enhanced financing arrangements needed to catalyse growth in the renewables industry.

The planned launch of SARi at COP 17  received extensive coverage from the week of 3 November 2011. The article that was carried on industry websites across the globe, was carried on on 3 November 2011. Other pieces from the week ending 12 November follow below from South Africa’s Financial Mail and the Independent Group’s Natal Mercury.

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Posted in COP 17, Green Growth, International Funding Partnerships, Policy, Renewables Funding, SARi, SARi in the news, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , ,

President Zuma: Funding ‘vital to tackling climate change’

13 September 2011  “Climate change cannot be tackled without an agreement that includes finance, technology and capacity building,” South African President Jacob Zuma said at a preparatory meeting ahead of the forthcoming UN climate summit in Durban in December 2011, according to

“An agreement that does not address the necessary means of implementation – finance, technology and capacity building – will not be equitable,”

Zuma is quoted as saying at the informal ministerial consultations on the 17th Conference of Parties of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 17).

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Norwegian Government promises support for SARi during SA state visit

According to President Jacob Zuma, during a State visit by the South African President  to Norway in September, Norway has offered to help South Africa transform its highly coal-dependendent economy by moving towards more renewable energy sources. And SARi featured as a key enabler in this process.

According to Peter Fabricius in an article in the Sunday Independent of 4 September, “Meeting in SA this week to clear major obstacles to successful COP 17”, Norway’s Minister of Environment and International Development, Erik Solheim is reported as pledging his support of the South African Renewables Initiative. Fabricius notes that Solheim told journalists after meeting International Relations and Co-operation Minister, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane and Energy Minister Dipuo Peters that “Norway would support the South African Renewables Energy Initiative which aims to move South Africa away from dependence on coal towards renewable energies like solar and wind, which don’t emit carbon”.

Norway stated that they anticipated three specific outcomes from COP 17 in Durban:  A route forward for the extension of the Kyoto Protocol; the implementation of the many agreements reached at Cancun, such as the establishment of a Green Climate Fund and agreements to make Durban an African CPP by finding wasy to help poorer countries, especially in Africa, to adapt to Climate change.

Reported in the Sunday Independent, 4 September 2011.

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