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Genesis 1, 28 says that we should "go forth and multiply, and replenish the earth." Not all Bibles have this "replenish the e...

Friday, February 27, 2015

Article in the Cape Times, 27th February 2015, re Treasuring the Karoo

The Treasure the Karoo Action Group, TKAG, thinks that everyone here is aware of the upstream, ie the exploration and mining, problems with hydraulic fracturing commonly known as fracking, especially problems with high​-volume​, slick-water horizontal fracking, and other problems such as above​-ground frack fluid chemical leaks into water or air, leaking wells, methane in water, contamination of rivers and streams, pipeline leaks, etc.

We think that it would be much quicker and environmentally friendly to import gas from the new gas fields in Mozambique and Namibia​, and that doing this will in fact strengthen the​ southern African power pool, and promote mutual co-operation and trust, especially in light of the government’s commitment to the Grand Inga ​hydro-electric ​scheme.

We think that everyone is aware that South Africa does not have an established gas infrastructure and that the likelihood is great that one or more pipelines will be built from the coast to potential mining areas in the Karoo and that all the gas that is mined there will be exported. The sea water will be refined as required.

It is unlikely that the common person would benefit from this resource, except perhaps with grants, but grants are not jobs, and grants lead to lawlessness and the drug problems we see in schools and our communities.

​[

this bit was left out of the Cape Times article ...

Tendencies in the USA surrounding the fracking industry show that jobs are transient and mostly for skilled professionals. The influx of workers, establishment of “man camps” and the large volume of truck traffic and other logistical realities place enormous socio-economic burdens on communities, including increasing social issues such as crime, violence, drugs, etc.

One should also note that Professor Dr Anthony Turton, a water engineer, in a report this week, has pointed out that “the historic legacy of mining – both gold and coal – has now become a fundamental constraint to future economic development, job creation and thus social stability. The reason for this is a failure to respond in the field of policy. The core message is that we need to transfer the lessons learned from policy failure in the mining sector in order to prevent a similar catastrophe from occurring in the fracking arena. This is supported by empirical evidence.”​

]​

​At the Alternative Mining ​indabas in Cape Town this month, mining communities and communities impacted by mining voiced how upset they were that they were not empowered​, and that mining had not enriched their lives and people remain impoverished because of “the flagrant violation of ethical and legal standards” and associated weak governance. Quote from Cape Times Business Report, Tuesday​, February​ 17.

We have heard energy consultants mention the possibility of building gas​-fired power stations in the interior to generate electricity to feed it into the grid. The lack of infrastructure is one of many logistical and practical hurdles they would face.

​[ this also left out ...​

It took inventors over 50 years in the US to "perfect" fracking and in the past 20 years high volume slick-water horizontal hydraulic fracturing has become commercially available, at a high price. And this was done in areas where there were already oil and gas wells and where the "frackers" were looking for oil and gas in the shale layer under the oil and gas layers. Shale gas plays around the world happen underneath existing oil and gas reserves.

​]​

South Africa doesn't have an on-shore established oil and gas mining industry and most of the technology and expertise will need to be imported. Therefore it is unlikely that local supplies and expertise will be employed.

South Africans would typically be employed as truck drivers and in ancillary service industries of the gas industry, which will not help the economy grow sustainably, or in the long term. Jobs would be lost once the boom phase is over.

Thousands of trucks will use roads which already aren't well maintained, and one can see the potential for dust storms affecting existing farmland and the SKA.

We know that the South African Judicial system is overburdened at the moment, and with limited capacity who knows if enforcement will be possible, even with the strictest environmental standards in the world​?​

​Although the government says that local jobs are a priority, it has just imported 30 ​water ​engineers from Cuba, even though there is local capacity in South Africa. Even with all the legislation in place and with stringent immigration laws, how is it that government can import jobs, but private business cannot?

The IRP 2010 Update 2013 predicts a shortage of electricity supply until 2029 even with large gas and nuclear, and even if we start the nuclear and fracking process today, it is unlikely that South Africans will see any benefits from this mining and infrastructure for the next 12 years.

TKAG has an alternative and we are prepared to negotiate with government, assuming the government first allows us this alternative. This alternative is based on best practice in the rest of the world where renewable energy has taken hold​, and where countries are growing this resilient and embedded form of energy at figures of up to 35​ percent compound growth per annum over a 10​-year period.

Our proposal starts with the implementation of the Energy White Paper of 1998 and the Renewable Energy White Paper of 2003. ​These White Papers called for 30​ percent of the grid to be in private ownership by 2010. The​ Department of Energy, Eskom and the ​cities prevented this growth because of a fixation on making income from electricity​.

One should also note that the title of this panel discussion contains “upstream” and​, for the TKAG, upstream includes the ​Sun​, which is upstream as a resource.

Here is the list of our demands, based entirely on the White Papers and best practice from around the world:

1) Allow ​net ​metering with the same buy and sell prices for anyone.

2) No service fee is needed​.​
3) Time of Use Tariffs for anyone without a service fee. Homeowners should be able to decide for themselves if they want this and be prepared to pay up to R10 000 for the required meters and equipment.

4) Allow private homeowners to invest before VAT and before tax so that the playing fields are the same as for IPPs.

5) Give private homeowners the same perks as Eskom gives to their large customers in terms of ​demand ​response [​and other ​rebates​]​.

6) Implement 30​ percent rebates for implementation of renewable energy​.​

7) Rather use the ​capital expenditure for "Coal 3" on making 2 million or more "formerly disadvantaged" people's homes into power stations.

8) Use the 3.5c per kWh that is being collected for Feed In Tariffs and which was 2​c per kWh from 2009 to 2011 for the purpose it was implemented, ie to pay for true ​net ​metering and/or Feed In Tariffs.

​The TKAG would like all these items, inter alia, to be seriously considered and appraised before seismic testing permission is given.

​The TKAG, concerned with ensuring that the constitutional rights of South Africans are respected with regards to shale gas, believes that once these measures are introduced, Karoo gas will not have a business case in South Africa.

​[also left out in the newspaper

Short term in the energy industry is five years, therefore we propose that government keeps the exploration and mining moratorium in place for that period of time whilst allowing the excellent policy White Papers of 1998 and 2003 to be implemented.

The TKAG believes that sustainable job creation, through sustainable development and the green economy is key to South Africa and that the massive short and long term lack of electricity supply is severely hampering job growth.

​]​

--- end of Newspaper Article and Statement made by David Lipschitz at the SANEA Gas Industry Dialog on the 20th February 2015. 71 people attended the Dialog at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Letter to the Cape Times: 26 February 2015: Planet in Trouble

Dear Editor

Whilst Sydney Kaye and so many others deny climate change and, who knows, maybe he is right, something that is undeniable is mankind's destruction of the environment upon which he depends.

Here is a quote from Fred Pearce's book Confessions of an Eco Sinner: "Our planet is certainly in trouble, and us with it. More than 6 billion of us cannot fail to leave a dangerously large footprint. We consume 40% of all the plant growth on the planet, a third of the marine life and half the available fresh water. We have halved the geographical extent of most natural ecosystems, from wetlands to rainforests to grasslands. Our pollution has tripled the amount of nitrogen that nature has to process each year, and doubled the amount of sulphur.

​"​We have added more than a third to atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide, the planet's thermostat. We are running down her resources, like soil and clean water, as certainly as if we were running up a credit-card bill. The planet's very life-support systems are under threat."

And then Pearce goes on to say: "I want to put my faith in the children of Toba, with their survival skills."

Toba was a massive volcanic eruption 73,000 years ago that caused a "night" that lasted 1 000 years. All except approximately 2 000 humans died, and these humans lived in the eastern plains of Africa and survived because they worked together.

The internet and newspapers like yours, getting the messages out, be they paradoxical or conflicting, are allowing millions of people to change their view of the world and decide for themselves if they wish to work together to reduce their environmental footprint and​, perhaps in the process, not only save themselves but also save those who deny this massive threat to our existence.

Yours faithfully,
David Lipschitz
Milnerton

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

More people need to put in place embedded and micro power generation

Insight Article in the Cape Times today: "More people need to put in place embedded and micro power generation".

Dear all

Many people have been asking me "what happens if there is a blackout" and I've been replying to you and also saying, please wait a week, as I've written to the Cape Times and if they publish I'll send out the email and if they haven't published within 2 weeks, then i'll also send out the email.

I pray that you enjoy reading this email and that it allays your fears of a complete breakdown "blackout" of the South African national grid. As more and more people take responsibility for all or part of their electricity and water needs, so the risk of a complete meltdown gets less and less. At the same time as this, as Eskom does more and more of the Planned Maintenance it MUST do on its power stations and the national grid, the less chance there is of catastrophe.

Best regards, and thank you for all your support. There is no way I could continue with this endeavour without the support and encouragement I receive from you all.

David

---

Dear Editor

More and more people, including MP's interviewed after President Jacob Zuma's State of the Nation Address, are asking about the chance of a nationwide electricity blackout. Such a blackout would be a catastrophe because of no water pumped, no fuel, no transport, fridges and freezers stopping to work, and after a few hours or perhaps two days, riots and civil war as people look for water and food.

The national electricity grid is about R100 billion behind on maintenance, so that means that the chance of sections of the grid going down are relatively big, as compared with there being no grid maintenance backlog.

The chance of all the power stations going down at the same time gets bigger and bigger as Eskom does less and less maintenance.

But recently, it has realised that it has to initiate load shedding so that it can do maintenance work.

I just pray that it is taking down enough of the power stations for long enough to do the required maintenance. I'd rather have four hours of load shedding a day and no chance of a blackout than 2.5 hours of load shedding a day and the chance of dying in two days time.

But there is a silver lining to the crisis.

People are installing generators, whether they are petrol, diesel, gas or renewable energy. As people and companies become self-reliant, the grid becomes more stable and the chance of a mass blackout gets less. As this is happening, more people are installing pool covers and water tanks, which also protect the need for water.

Meanwhile, Eskom has finally come to the party and asked businesses with private generators to register themselves on an Eskom database. It pays for these businesses to be part of its system, and sometimes asks these businesses to turn their generators on to prevent load shedding. In this case, Eskom pays for all or part of the cost of running the generators. But Eskom still don't want these businesses to reverse-feed the grid, so an opportunity is still being missed.

Resilience is built into the system. If only the government (ANC and DA) would allow reverse-feed, homeowners and shopping centres and other people installing generators (of any kind) could provide excess electricity into the grid, stabilising it even more.

Eskom has said for decades that embedded generators destabilise the grid, but this is plainly untrue. Turkey has confirmed the country's wind turbines have stabilised the grid. The US is installing more embedded generators, because this provides resilience and stabilises the grid and, therefore, the economy.

So the more people, businesses, shopping centres, industry and mines take responsibility for micro and embedded generation, the better for all South Africans poor and rich.

And if Eskom puts up electricity by 24% in July, private homeowners who install battery based systems might actually be able to save money on their electricity needs.

And, of-course, these homeowners aren't effected by load-shedding, except perhaps for cooking and heating elements, but even those might be economically powered come July.

From a City of Cape Town point of view, imagine if the DA had followed through and allowed Feed In Tariffs in 2009 and Net Metering in 2011. Cape Town would not be affected by load shedding, we would have the head offices of businesses based in Johannesburg moving to Cape Town, and the Western Cape would be booming, sustainably.

Yours faithfully,
David Lipschitz
Portfolio Head of Energy on the Greater Cape Town Civic Alliance Exco.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

What if it rains and I've got a solar electric photovoltaic (PV) system?

What if it rains and I've got a photovoltaic (PV) (solar electric) system?

A question I get all the time!!!

Well it's raining now (13th February at 11.15am) and my 1 KW PV system is generating 190 Watts.

We are currently using less than 190 Watts in the house, therefore we have excess energy being used to recharge the batteries. If we have a power failure now or Load Shedding, we won't use our batteries.

One should also note that Germany is the world's biggest PV installer and they've been installing in a big way since 1991. They only have 40% of the solar irradiation of South Africa and therefore for the same capital cost, South African PV users get 2.5 times the output as compared with German PV users.

Battery related questions in a backup system which can be used during Load Shedding in South Africa

Here is an answer I just posted on Facebook: "Have I been given the wrong info? I hear that the battery replacement cycle is rather short and therefore costly."

Hi Pat.

If you buy the 100 or 105AH "Solar Storage" batteries that look like car batteries, but which are called "Solar Storage", they will last about 2 years and then even though they say that are "sealed" I had 8 of these batteries and managed to refill them after two years to that they lasted 4 years. But their performance wasn't great.

18 months ago I upgraded to "Deep Cycle" batteries, 260 AH 12 Volt SonX batteries. The 4 SonX cost about R20,000 instead of the first set which cost about R12,000. But they are firstly 520 AH at 24 Volts instead of 420 AH at 24 Volts and secondly their performance is excellent. They last a lot longer than the original batteries.

And then the specification says they should last 7 years, but I'm hoping they will last longer than this, but even 7 years will be excellent. Note that in a battery system design, one should design the system to not use more than 30% of the battery capacity on a regular (daily) basis and only use 50% on a very irregular basis. This way the batteries are looked after and will last the specified time.

Having said all this, the inverters should last 12 years and the most of the photovoltaic (PV) panels are guaranteed for 30 years, with the PV panels performance deteriorating to 90% of their rated capacity after 12 years and to 80% of their rated capacity after 30 years.

So relative to inverters and PV panels, batteries don't last as long and therefore need to be replaced more often and therefore are relatively more expensive. But the benefits they give you far exceed their costs, in my opinion.

One should also note that if you have a "battery system", you need more components than on a "grid tie system" without batteries and therefore a system with a battery costs more than just adding the additional battery bank. And there is more maintenance on a battery system although the systems can be programmed to look after themselves and send warning system messages or emails or sms's if there is a problem.

Set 1: Price R12,500: Lasted 2 years. The second 2 years battery performance was really poor. Equals R6,250 per annum.

Set 2: R20,000: Should last 7 years: R2857 per annum.
These calculations exclude interest and the Cost of Capital, but I think the point is made.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Choice

I installed my initial system in 2008, when we had the original crisis. I was a bit early, but it was a choice I made.

Here is what is happening now.

A email reply from one of my suppliers:

Dear Customer

Your email has been received.

Because of the unprecedented demand created by Eskom’s Power cuts, we are experiencing extreme volumes of enquiries and apologise if there are delays in responding your emails and telephone calls.

We are working overtime every day, including weekends, to ensure we answer everyone as quickly as possible but request your patience. There can be up to a 5 day delay due to the high volumes.

We have 16 incoming telephone lines but with the extreme number of calls coming in it is not possible to answer all calls. Please be patient.

We appreciate your understanding during this difficult time for everybody.

Yours truly,
RE Supplier

--

Note from David Lipschitz:

Our problem is not technological or financial. It is a choice. I choose to make my own electricity, or most of it so far. I choose to drive an old car and my wife to drive an old car.

Rain and Solar-Electric PV Photovoltaic Systems

What if it rains and I've got a photovoltaic (PV) (solar electric) system?

A question I get all the time!!!

Well it's raining now and my 1 KW PV system is generating 190 Watts. It's a thin film system so it will be interesting to see how crystalline systems are performing.

We are currently using less than 190 Watts in the house, therefore we have excess energy being used to recharge the batteries. If we have a power failure now or Load Shedding, we won't use our batteries.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Don't Blame Power Crisis on Apartheid

Opinion / Insight Piece Article in today's Cape Times (Tue, 10th Feb, 2015)

Dear Editor

“Government should create an enabling environment through the introduction of fiscal and financial support mechanisms within an appropriate legal and regulatory framework, to allow renewable energy technologies to compete with fossil-based technologies.”

This is from the ANC government's own White Paper on Renewable Energy, a Policy Paper, written in 2003.

If only they would follow their own strategy instead of blaming apartheid.

Bringing Medupi coal power station online has been delayed yet again and who can tell if this power station will ever supply electricity to the national grid?
Does the government perhaps find it easier to increase electricity prices by 25% per annum and provide grants to the poor, who will vote for them to keep their grants, than to rather increase the electricity supply which will create jobs - but then people might not vote for them?​

​Perhaps President Jacob Zuma, as the chief executive of the government and head of ensuring that ​
South African taxpayers ​and electricity users' monies are spent effectively - ​and who are funding this build - ​can provide us with insight as to what is meant to be completed by when and why there are delays?

Why can't the government pull out all the stops to at least get the first turbine on-stream?

We are paying for a project, which is late; is way over budget; penalties are being paid to suppliers; our bills have already been increased by 200 percent to pay for the budgeted capital spend; yet even though we are making these payments in good faith, we don't know what is happening with the power stations that Zuma and his team are building on our behalf?

And we are paying 200 percent more for a poorer state electricity supply than we had in 2008. How could this have happened?

​Eskom's culture has always been to build the word's biggest, most "modern" power stations, proving how wonderful they are, but at huge expense to the taxpayer and economy.

Why has the ANC allowed this apartheid-era culture to continue when ​worldwide benchmarks show the there are no economies of scale of building coal power stations bigger than 800 MW? Why has the ANC allowed these two monster power stations, Medupi and Kusile, to even get off the drawing board when 12 smaller power stations would have cost the same (original budget) and would have been completed on time and without all the headaches currently being experienced by our giants?

Zuma and his team are directly responsible for the R​300bn spent so far on Medupi and Kusile​; plus the R12bn being spent annually on diesel; plus the loss of income of these giant power stations; plus the mega-pollution from burning this diesel; plus the money being spent on supplies which are available, but aren't being used; plus the money being spent on grants for the millions of people who would have jobs if these power stations worked. Why is our president allowing this state of affairs to continue?

Why isn't he on national TV weekly telling his electorate what he and his team have done in the past week to solve this crisis? Why isn't he in government every week doing the same thing?​

The total money spent so far could have been used to make at least ​6 million "township" dwellers homes into power stations. Millions of people would have jobs.​ And South Africa's Gini coefficient, a measure of wealthy compared to poor people, would be not be almost the world's biggest/worst.​

Zuma​, and last week Energy Minister Lynne Brown,​ blamed apartheid; and if apartheid is to blame, then I have the following observations and questions:

* ​In 1997, Eskom's board of directors warned the government that there would be system failures by 2008. Why didn't Zuma listen to them? Note that as far as I am concerned the ANC has been in power for 20 years and Zuma represents all his predecessors as well as himself. It's time for the blame game to stop! I'd like to read something like "we made mistakes, and this is what we are doing about it".

* ​In 1998 and 2003, the ANC government produced the Energy and Renewable Energy White Papers respectively. These White Papers represent the strategy and policy of the government. According to them, 30% of the national grid would be in private ownership by 2010. Why wasn't this implemented?

* ​In 2009, the government "implemented" Feed In Tariffs and ​an associated 3.5 cent per kWh levy where South African electricity users have paid over R30bn into this fund. But there are no Feed In Tariffs. In 2011, the City of Cape Town "implemented" Net Metering - and there are funds from National Government to implement this - but then the City of Cape Town prevented the Net Metering adoption. Why did the ANC prevent Feed In Tariff adoption?

Why has the DA prevented Net Metering in the Western Cape​, especially when funds are available from central government to implement it, and especially when the National Energy Regulator of SA and the SA Bureau of Standards created the required Tariff Structure and Standards in 2009​? Why hasn't the DA taken the ANC to court regarding the lack of implementation of Feed-In-Tariffs?

* We have read that 5.8 million ​more households have received electricity in the past 20 years. Is it better that those with electricity have increased from all businesses, mines, industry and 50 percent of the population (way more than the white minority) with electricity access 24 hours a day, to 86% of the population and all the job creators, who now only have intermittent access to electricity?

* Why doesn't the SA Revenue Service, South Africa's pre-eminent debt collector, get the thousands of people who have subsidised bills, but still aren't paying their bills - for example the R4bn owed by some in Soweto - to pay up?

* How has South Africa achieved the increase from 50 to 86 percent of homeowners with access to electricity over the past 20 years without building a new base load power station?

* Why is it ok for everyone to have electricity 16.5 hours a day whilst Eskom run the most expensive power stations ever designed (diesel) to support its grid? Especially when a decentralised rooftop-based grid would solve our problems, with government allowing homeowners to invest in battery-based systems before tax and before VAT, just like businesses can?

* Wouldn't it perhaps be better to use the R300bn spent on Medupi and Kusile to make 6 million formerly disadvantaged houses into power stations, meaning no electricity supply need for their owners - and I estimate that these homeowners could export an additional 20 to 50 percent surplus electricity into the grid, supplementing their income and, at the same time, ensuring that their owners continue to vote for the ANC, which has finally achieved its goal of making the poor rich by having a sustainable annuity (monthly) income?

* Why not allow the "rich", which these days seems to be anyone able to pay 100 percent of their tax, electricity, water, rates, ​and other government legislated bills, to build their own power stations at their own cost and for them to supply the grid with electricity at the same rate paid to Independent Power Producers (IPP's) during non-load-shedding-times and at the rate Eskom pays for diesel when needed? And this rate could reduce by 5 percent per annum!

* Brown also said in the past week that the government had expected private electricity producers to come to the table in terms of the 1998 and 2003 Energy and Renewable Energy White Papers respectively, which said that 30 percent of electricity generation should be in private ownership by 2010. But our new minister doesn't know her history! When IPSA built a 500MW coal power station in the Eastern Cape in 2006/2007, why did the government choose not to buy their electricity, forcing them to remove their power station in 2008 after years of struggling and move it overseas?

IPSA wasn't the only independent power producer affected in this way!

If the​ ANC's strategies ​mentioned above ​had been enabled, ​at least 6​ million taxpayers' homes could now be power stations, or this process would be underway.

Millions more people would have jobs​ - building these power stations, being made into entrepreneurs by selling electricity and providing the electricity that mines, industry and business so sorely needs - finally fulfilling Karl Marx's dream of the poor working class person being able to own the means of production!

​I's crazy to say that apartheid is to blame for the mess we are in when the ANC hasn't followed its own strategy​, and hasn't used the information that has cost the South African taxpayer billions of rand in consultants fees wisely​.

What the ANC has done is use the "excess profits" from the electricity system for other projects instead of reinvesting as they should have done​, and following the wise White Papers and Policy created in 1998 and 2003​. It has treated the infrastructure created by the previous regime as cash cows rather than understanding what was needed to make South Africa great.

We also read last week that the DA has finally come out against nuclear energy and is rather in favour of continuing the status quo by relying on large-scale centralised independent power producers.

How will this solve the decentralised load-shedding problems being experienced at least until 2029, according to the government's own Independent Resource Plan 2013 Update, which says that even with large-scale gas and nuclear power we can experience load shedding for the next 14 years?

I look forward to Zuma's televised and written response and Premier Helen Zille's televised and written response and, if I read that their "spokesperson" or their "special advisor" has replied, everyone will know that they still aren't listening.

Yours faithfully,
David Lipschitz
​Portfolio head of energy on the Greater Cape Town Civic Alliance Exco

Sunday, February 8, 2015

A summary of some of David Lipschitz thoughts and ideas over the years

My Blogs:

My videos:


My presentations:

Stories:

Mindmaps:

We have already saved more than 50% of our electricity needs by being energy efficient, some free and some paid for, but all these things mean we don't need electricity.
We make 25% of our remaining electricity.
Next steps: Become more electricity independent. Continue water independence. Start sewerage independence.

My next port of call from a research point of view is finding out about getting a septic tank and French Drain like my late grandmother used to have in her house in Bantry Bay in the 1950's. She removed it when council said they could do the job for her cheaply and so she didn't need to worry about it. She was also self-sufficient in water collection at the time, but the council said they could supply water cheaply and it would always be available.

How times have changed!

ANC Government Policy

“Government should create an enabling environment through the introduction of fiscal and financial support mechanisms within an appropriate legal and regulatory framework, to allow renewable energy technologies to compete with fossil-based technologies.”

This is from the ANC Government's own White Paper on Renewable Energy, a Policy Paper, written in 2003.

If only they would follow their own strategy instead of blaming Apartheid.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Our precarious and paradoxical existence

Load Shedding for 48 hours (worst case scenario and we are already at 7.5 hours of Load Shedding per day):

No electricity!
No heating or cooling!
No water!
No petrol! No diesel!
No food supply!
Food in fridges goes off!
Food in supermarkets disappears!
Food in warehouses disappears!
People in hospitals die as the generators probably won't run for more than 2 days continuously without being refuelled.
Riots as people start looking for food and water!
We die.

We plan for retirement in 30 years time. We insure ourselves in case our stuff gets stolen or our house burns down. We plan Christmas Holidays.

But we live an incredibly precarious life as we don't think about what might happen in two days time!

Rainbow Warrior Comes to South Africa to teach us about Nuclear and Renewables

Message from Greenpeace Africa.

We’re very excited to announce that the iconic Greenpeace ship - the Rainbow Warrior (http://www.greenpeace.org/africa/en/about/Our-ships/the-rainbow-warrior/Ship-Tour-2015)- will be on South African shores in February to highlight solutions to South Africa’s current electricity crisis! We invite you to celebrate the return of the Rainbow Warrior with us.

The ship will visit Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and Durban (http://www.greenpeace.org/africa/en/about/Our-ships/the-rainbow-warrior/Ship-Tour-2015) during the month of February, and we’ll host a number of fun and engaging activities during the month. Check out the open boat dates below - when the ship will be open to the public for free tours between 10h00 and 15h00 - in a city near you:
10th,  14th & 15th of Feb – Cape Town, V&A Waterfront, Quay 6, Jetty 2
22nd of Feb – Port Elizabeth Harbour (look out for the signs)
28th Feb & 1st March – Durban Harbour, N-Shed
The South African government is currently pushing ahead with new nuclear investments, which may cost as much as R1 trillion, and will take a minimum of 15 years to build. With this ship tour, we plan to highlight the fact that nuclear energy is a dead end, and that removing the barriers to renewable energy investments is the real solution to the current electricity crisis. Renewable energy is already delivering on time and on budget, and it’s a no brainer that we should be making it easier for everyone to invest in solar panels for our rooftops, particularly when we are faced with the realities of loadshedding almost every day.  

The CSIR (Council for Scientific and Industrial Research) recently reported in a new study (http://www.iol.co.za/business/news/sa-s-first-green-projects-net-r800m-1.1809367#.VMjXf2iUeka) that South Africa’s first wind and solar projects created R800 million in net financial benefits last year – that’s huge! Now is the time to invest in renewable energy!

So come along, bring a friend or two to see the Rainbow Warrior and be part of the solution!

Lerato Tsotetsi and the Greenpeace Africa team