Use your electricity efficiently – Motlanthe

2011-03-19 08:03

Deputy president Kgalema Motlanthe wants South Africans to “seriously consider” how they are using their electricity.

“There is no doubt that immediate benefits for the environment can be achieved in South Africa in the short-term if we all consider just how we are using electricity,” Motlanthe said at the launch of Eskom’s energy efficiency campaign in Johannesburg yesterday.

“By taking action on a personal level to reduce waste, acting as an ‘electricity influencer’ at home and in the workplace, we can today begin the process of saving electricity and contributing to the health of our environment.”

Motlanthe said that by reducing the need for coal, which generates 92% of South Africa’s electricity, and making better use of generating facilities, the country could be safeguarding its environment for future generations.

“We can through our actions ensure that, as Eskom builds new capacity, we develop habits that are ultimately beneficial to the health of our families,” he said.

“We each have it within our power to make an individual difference to energy efficiency in South Africa.”

He said South Africa was in the same situation as many other nations when it came to reaching a happy medium between the need for electricity and the reduction of environmentally damaging emissions.

The “conundrum” could be addressed in two ways.

“We can work with other nations towards finding ways of reducing emissions and so relieve the burden on our environment.

“At home we can concentrate on mobilising our people and gaining their support to create an energy-efficient nation that values its electricity and participates actively in conserving this valuable resource.”

The private sector had also committed itself to reducing wastage by introducing efficient production methods, he said.

The government and Eskom had “participated fully” in international think-tanks and meetings designed to “set parameters” on damaging environmental gases.

“We participate fully in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and underwrite the organisation’s objective to stabilise greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous interference with the climate system,” Motlanthe said.

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