Eskom's coal-fired Duvha power station in Mpumalanga. Picture: SIMON MATHEBULA
Eskom's coal-fired Duvha power station in Mpumalanga. Picture: SIMON MATHEBULA

Opportunities brought about by load-shedding in SA are the focus of this edition of the Business Day Spotlight. 

Our host Mudiwa Gavaza is joined by Gladwin Malishe, deputy president of the Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and Clinton Carter-Brown, head of the energy centre at The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). 

SA is currently experiencing its longest bout of load-shedding — a systematic reduction of power provided by power utility Eskom — with rolling blackouts having become a part of life in the last month and a half. 

Without dwelling too much on the obvious negative impact of the power outages, the discussion mainly focuses on opportunities that arise from this state of affairs.

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Malishe says this is a good time for small businesses to provide alternative energy solutions to homes and corporates around the country. However, he cautions that serious investment can only take place once government puts appropriate policies in place.

Mudiwa Gavaza. Picture: DOROTHY KGOSI.
Mudiwa Gavaza. Picture: DOROTHY KGOSI.

Carter-Brown says “a good crisis can’t be put to waste,” drawing on the CSIR’s research about alternative energy sources for consumers and businesses in SA. He advocates for a holistic approach, noting that no-one energy source can truly cater for all our needs. 

The discussion concludes by looking at the pressure that Eskom continues to face in meeting the country’s energy requirements. 

Topics of discussion include: impressions of the load-shedding that SA is experiencing, opportunities brought about by the energy generation deficit, government policies need to ensure that business can invest in providing energy services, the alternative power technologies available to consumers, and a look at how Eskom can be better placed to meet the country’s energy needs.

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 Business Day Spotlight is a TimesLIVE Podcasts production.

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