The 17,600MW allocated to solar energy in the draft 2016 integrated resource plan is welcome, but does not go far enough in developing the “immense potential” of the sector, the South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (Sapvia) said on Tuesday. Another energy lobby group, the Life After Coal campaign, said the plan was not ambitious enough in its replacement of coal generation with renewable energy. Renewables were the best policy choice for SA, Sapvia said in a statement following a media briefing by Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson, to release the integrated resource and integrated energy plans. Sapvia said its views were demonstrated by independent modelling, based on up-to-date figures from the bidding rounds of the renewable energy independent power producer procurement programme. “Evidence shows that the least cost path for SA to achieve a sustainable, low-carbon, high-job-creating energy mix is one that contains a large renewable-energy component, supplemented wi...

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