#SONA2019: South Africa to drive smarter mobility

As mentioned in his State of the Nation Address, President Ramaphosa emphasised the importance of working towards inclusive, sustainable development that is resilient in the face of climate change.

South Africa now has the opportunity to be at the forefront of green growth and low-carbon industrialisation by pioneering new technologies and taking quantum leaps towards the economy of the future. 

Ben Pullen, CEO at Generation.e welcomes this sentiment and agrees that in order to do this, safe, reliable, affordable, and sustainable electricity is needed.

READ: Volvo and uber presents their production vehicle

The goal to deliver low cost electricity options is vital and can enhance the efforts to deliver well connected electric railway efforts.  

                                                                                                      Image: Supplied

In addition, as the country continues to introduce renewable and affordable electricity generation, the value of electric vehicles for South Africa will increase. This is not only essential for sustainability, but will also assist in cutting the costs South Africa spends on importing oil - which is currently costing the country approximately $13bn per annum. 

According to GreenCape if only 1 million electric vehicles are sold in the country, which is around 2-3 years-worth of South Africa’s new vehicle sales, it would reduce oil import costs by around R8bn.

This could then be redistributed into building sustainable and healthy renewable energy resources, which would create jobs and keep the money in South African borders. It could also be invested into new or improved rail and bus transport, for example. 

The transport sector is a huge culprit when it comes to polluting the atmosphere and subsequently our cities, it is now more important than ever for South Africa to actively transition towards smarter mobility.” 

"This can be done by building on the development of public transport solutions such as the Gautrain and by introducing new innovations in vehicle use, such as promoting the use of hybrid or electric vehicles,” he says.

uber volvo autonomous

“Ultimately the goal would be to work towards creating an environment where vehicles are not needed and instead bikes or scooters can be used, or the vehicles that are used are either electric, hybrid or reduced through car-pooling and ride hailing services.” 

“To do this, a shift from asset ownership to mobility as a service needs to take place, where the focus is more on mobility getting people from A to B instead of them needing to own a car. As such, a lot more effort needs to go into providing a range of safe, cost effective and sustainable mobility solutions,” he concludes. 

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
Voting Booth
Do you think Lewis Hamilton deserves to be knighted by the Queen?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Yes, he is an incredible athlete
35% - 91 votes
No, he hasn't done anything special
20% - 53 votes
He is good, but doesn't deserve the honour
45% - 118 votes