14 January 2009 – South Africa’s Democratic Alliance (DA) has revealed that, as part of its proposed energy policy, it would support the creation of a ministry of energy and climate change, said DA spokesmen Gareth Morgan and Hendrik Schmidt at a media briefing this week.
"Decoupling minerals from energy reverses a perverse relationship that has existed for decades in this country," Morgan said. A separate ministry would allow for improved integrated energy planning and efforts to decarbonise the South African economy.
According to the DA, Eskom’s monopoly reduced micro-generation and alternative energy options and part of the policy plan would be to unbundle transmission functions from generation, creating equal access to an independent grid and allowing space for private participation in the sector. In addition, Schmidt said the skill shortage within Eskom would be an issue to be addressed.
Another policy issue is a target of 15% energy generated from renewable sources by 2020, something that will be encouraged by the renewable feed in tariff, which allows for a fixed price to be paid for energy generated by renewable technologies. Additionally, energy generation sources would be carefully scrutinised and open to improved public participation.