29 June 2020

The African Energy Commission (AFREC) hosted a two day workshop with member states of the Southern African Development region (SADC), to present the results emanating from the Regional Electricity Savings Assessment which was conducted in partnership with United Environmental programme (UNEP), through the United for energy efficiency (U4E) in 2019/2020.

As pilot in the implementation of the African Energy Efficiency Programme, the Savings Assessment for SADC region presents a summary of potential benefits attained from the implementation of Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS) for lighting, appliances and equipment at a regional level..

Speaking at the opening of the meeting, Mr Rashid Ali Abdallah, the Executive Director of AFREC mentioned that the saving assessment duly quantify how much energy can be saved and it will assist AFREC to guide member states, decision and policy makers on which policies and relevant regulations are supposed to be developed to ensure energy saving mechanisms and initiatives are informed by evidence-based information, and are implemented within the region and thereafter across the continent.

On behalf of Ms Mapulao Mokoena, Director for Infrastructure at the SADC Secretariat, Mr Moses Ntlamelle, Senior Programme Officer for energy said that the aim is to transform the African into a high efficiency lighting and appliances with a strategic objective of the a policy abroad. ‘‘Energy efficiency is critical in the SADC region, and recommendation will divert the intended investment in the power production by applying energy efficiency and promoting it across all sectors of the economy especially the power supply and energy utilisation’’, He noted. The SADC Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (SACREE) Executive director, Mr Kuda Ndhlukula said, the SADC region has a large population of its people who have no access to electricity, or to clean and modern energy services, including sever power challenges in the region, energy saving opportunities are prominent. Hence, this is an opportunity for the region to support and promote industrialisation, as the region have already adopted the decision to phase out inefficient lighting.

The electricity assessment in the Region shows the following results:

  • Reduce electricity use between 15 to 24 TWh per year which is 5 to 9% of current regional electricity, leading to total cumulative electricity savings of between 100 TWh and 160 TWh by 2030.
  • These electricity savings are worth between US$ 1.3 to 2.2 Billion per year by 2030 leading to total cumulative savings on electricity bills of US$ 9 to 14 Billion.
  • The reduction in electricity demand could prevent the need to build about 7 to 11 large power plants [500MW each] in the region by 2030, saving a further US$ 7 to 11 Billion in unnecessary capacity costs.
  • The CO2 emissions saved from the reductions will be between 12 and 21 million tonnes per year by 2030 contributing 87 to 140 million tonnes in cumulative CO2 emissions savings over 10 years.
  • These emissions savings are equivalent to taking between 3 to 5 million fossil fueled cars off the road.

In addition to the initiative current being undertaken in the region by SACREE including the Energy Efficient Lighting and Appliances(EELA) programme, it was recommended that AFREC provides the following additional supports to the region:

  • Capacity building for players across the EELA value chain on MEPS setting and enforcement.
  • Establishment of Test Labs for Member States that do not have a national test lab (as some have indicated to have this as a national EELA project to support MEPS enforcement).
  • Market assessments for appliances such as Fans, TVs, Motors, Waters Heaters, etc. that have not yet been done in the region.
  • The Electricity savings assessment will be conducted in the other four African regions (North, West, Central and East) in the coming years. The Electricity saving assessment for the SADC Region is available at www.au-afrec.org/ ,in English, French and Portuguese.

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