Moving Johannesburg to 100% renewable energy

Creating jobs and improving the living conditions and health of residents


Residents of Johannesburg are urged to get behind the call to switch Joburg to 100% renewable energy. This will very quickly start to make the city more sustainable as it creates jobs. Just the greater use of solar power can create 12 times the number of jobs when compared to coal per Megawatt (MW) of power. Renewable energy also saves water and other essential resources and improves the city's health and appearance which appeals to residents and visitors alike.

The initiative is a collaboration between the African Climate Reality Project (ACRP) and Climate Action Network International (CAN) and kicks off on 27 March 2017. ACRP recognises that addressing climate change is a journey that residents, organisations from public and private sectors and government need to travel on together. Working with these role-players strengthens awareness and ensures a positive and impactful result.

The latest endeavour advances Joburg Mayor, Herman Mashaba's, goal: "We are going to bring change that will bring jobs. Let's get this city working again."
ACRP emphasises that the City of Joburg has a duty to look after the public good. This necessitates a divestment from fossil fuels and an investment in solutions to climate change - such as boundless solar and wind power.

"We're witnessing extreme weather conditions, such as the recent cyclone Dineo. These are caused by climate change that threatens the existing infrastructure and security of our citizens and costs money which the city cannot afford to waste," says Gillian Hamilton, manager of the ACRP in South Africa.

The switch towards 100% renewable energy has practical and reachable advantages, such as:

* Power generation uses substantially less water than fossil fuels - a factor that is pivotal in a water-scarce country like South Africa.
* The resulting decrease in the cost of energy enhances energy equity and equality, making energy more accessible and affordable to people of all income levels.
* Air or water become cleaner as we reduce pollution which has a direct impact on the health of the city.

"Through our community work in South Africa, we have realised that concepts like climate change and renewable energy are scientific and currently not close to everyone's heart."

Yet, our survival depends on us changing the way we approach the environment around us - and our city needs to catch up with the likes of Tshwane, Durban and Cape Town by committing to a roadmap that takes us away from fossil fuels towards 100% renewable energy," explains Hamilton. Residents meanwhile have numerous positive choices to adopt as part of their lifestyle - including the Big Five quick-wins included with this statement.

comments powered by Disqus


This edition

Issue 39