Greenpeace calls for South African climate leadership

2010-11-30 14:28

South Africa should put on its global leadership hat at the UN climate talks in Mexico as it prepares to host the next round of talks next year, environmental defence group Greenpeace today.

“The South African government must seize the opportunity of being the hosting country of the climate talks next year and take a leadership role now,” Greenpeace said in a statement the day after the latest round of talks under the 194-party UN Framework Convention on Climate Change kicked off in Cancun.

South Africa will host the next round of talks in the eastern port city of Durban next year.

“South Africa must not only push for a deal in the international negotiations, but must also choose a sustainable pathway to a clean energy future domestically,” Greenpeace said.

Africa’s largest economy currently relies on coal for about 90% of its yearly electricity production of almost 40 000 megawatts.

The country is currently holding public meetings aimed at finalising a new energy policy.

The draft plan aims to slash carbon emissions by 30%, cutting coal’s contribution to the energy mix to about half while drawing 16% of electricity from renewable energy and 14% from nuclear power.

It includes plans to build six new nuclear reactors over the next 20 years, a proposal that drew criticism from Greenpeace activists.

“We are concerned with the nuclear ambitions South Africa has,” climate and energy campaigner Nkopane Maphiri told journalists in Johannesburg.

“The nuclear lobby is pushing very strong to say that nuclear energy is clean” at the Cancun talks, Maphiri said – but without mentioning safety issues or the problem of disposing of nuclear waste, he added.

In September, South Africa’s nuclear energy regulator said 91 employees at the Koeberg reactor, the country’s only nuclear power station, were exposed to low-level radiation during maintenance on the plant.

Regulators say they are investigating the incident, which did not trigger the reactor’s alarm system.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.