‘Big is beautiful’ is blinding our energy policy makers

South Africa is groping in the dark. What a paradox in the country of endless sunshine. Following the crisis in electricity supply four of Eskom’s executives were suspended by the parastatal’s board, while Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa took great pains to reassure the country “there is light at the end of the tunnel”. This was just minutes before we heard of the R8bn overspent to buy diesel, the unprecedented tariff hike of 25% for consumers and Standard & Poor’s rating downgrade.

We may have become used to this state of affairs as part of life in times of load shedding. But the reality is that this is just the tip of the iceberg of an approach to energy production and consumption that is obsolete, dysfunctional, unjust and polluting. SA’s policy makers, but also many business leaders, like it “big”. A senior Eskom executive is reported as admitting Eskom’s business model relies on three imperatives, “big coal, big nuclear and big networks”.

 

Read the full article here: http://www.bdlive.co.za/opinion/2015/03/27/big-is-beautiful-is-blinding-our-energy-policy-makers

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