Ekurhuleni drives south-south cooperation through the South African launch of the ICLEI Local Renewables initiative

Ekurhuleni drives south-south cooperation through the South African launch of the ICLEI Local Renewables initiative

Boksburg/South Africa – Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality joined a network of global South cities committed towards driving renewable energy and energy efficiency actions yesterday by officially launching the project ‘Local Renewables: South-South cooperation between cities in India, Indonesia and South Africa’ at the Ekurhuleni Council Chambers in partnership with the Africa arm of ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI Africa) and with the support of the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP).

ICLEI, an international association of local governments committed to sustainable development, has developed a local renewables initiative which steers city governments through the process of effectively integrating increased Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy generation into all city systems and activities. Under this latest project of the Local Renewables initiative, ‘Local Renewables: South-South cooperation between cities in India, Indonesia and South Africa’, ICLEI Africa, in close partnership with the ICLEI Secretariats of South and Southeast Asia, aims to develop two model local renewables initiatives.

Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality in South Africa and Yogyakarta city in Indonesia were selected and will receive guidance from the ‘Solar City’, Coimbatore Corporation in India. The cities will aspire to become ‘Model Communities’ in the Local Renewables network by increasing renewable energy and energy efficiency through a number of activities, including calculating their carbon emission inventories through ICLEI’s HEAT + tool and developing and implementing long term action plans.

ICLEI Africa Regional Director, Kobie Brand introduced the project at the momentous launch and highlighted this as an exciting opportunity by saying "ICLEI Africa is delighted to work with the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality and REEEP on this low carbon focused initiative with tangible benefits with not only this city in the global South but other cities in South Africa. This project provides us with an exciting opportunity to work with a city on energy efficiency. We look forward to building on this opportunity to strengthen our engagement in this important area of urban sustainability."

Over the course of the next 18 months, EMM will undertake a sectoral Green House Gas (GHG) inventory to showcase the cities current emissions profile and build on its 2005 State of Energy Report. Drawing from the results ICLEI will develop, in partnership with EMM, an Action Plan that reviews existing targets for the adoption of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficient initiatives in line with national policy, through involvement of a multi-tier stakeholder committee at the local level. The action plan will lead to the identification of relevant demonstration projects in different sectors, implement a pilot project and showcase the process and results to observer cities with wide spread dissemination through a country workshop towards the conclusion of the project.

The local launch of this international project at the Ekurhuleni Council Chambers saw the participation of a number of key stakeholders, including national and provincial governments, the South African Local Government Association (SALGA), NGO’s, the private sector and many more. A range of these stakeholders subsequently joined the local project Stakeholder Committee that will be engaged on a number of the project deliverables to help facilitate knowledge sharing, participation and coordination throughout the project and beyond.

The project, which coincides with the UN “International Year of Sustainable Energy for All”, will also see the establishment of a resource centre, showcasing innovative Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency technologies and practices from the region, whilst serving as an educational hub for the general public.

Mark Wilson, General Manager for Electricity & Energy (Corporate Office) at EMM welcomed the initiative during the conclusion of the launch by emphasizing the huge renewable energy potential of Ekurhuleni. Mark encouraged the drive to develop Ekurhuleni into a Solar City, as one of the largest city energy users in South Africa, whilst enjoying an excellent annual average solar radiation rating 6kwh/m2/day throughout the year).

REEEP, the project funder, is an international non-profit change agent aiming to catalyse the market for efficient and renewable energy. With particular focus on emerging markets and developing countries, REEEP ensures their activities are locally relevant and focused. For its functional success REEEP International relies on its strategically located regional secretariats in China, South – East Asia, Latin America, United States, People’s Republic of China, South Asia and Southern Africa.

For more information please see our project page.

Other resources:

Local Renewables Initiative

Local Renewables: South-South cooperation




REEEP Local RE Model Communities


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