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Ahead of COP27: South Africa and Denmark cooperate on developing a sustainable, just and secure energy supply in South Africa

Through close cooperation, South Africa and Denmark work to create a sustainable and just energy supply in South Africa. The energy journey draws on Danish experiences.

Denmark’s global cooperation

Denmark accounts for 0.1 % of global CO₂ emissions. In driving the global path to net-zero, Danish efforts can offer great inspiration that stands on the shoulder of societal efforts, underlining why public-private collaboration is essential in the quest to develop technologies, policies, and partnerships to accelerate the green transition. By partnering with some of the world’s biggest emitters and fastest-growing economies, Denmark puts its expertise to use where it holds the greatest impact.

Read more about green transition in Denmark

South Africa is Africa’s second-largest economy after Nigeria and the country has almost 60 million inhabitants. South Africa is characterized by a growing population and the need for economic growth but the current energy sys­tem is a limiting factor. In addition, according to the World Resource Institute’s Climate Data Explorer, South Africa is the world’s 17th largest emitter of CO2. Greenhouse gas emissions per capita are 59% higher than the world average.

The South African government recognizes this and has laid out a plan for how they will bring about a so­cially just energy sector by 2030 which will provide stable energy at competitive prices. Access to clean and envi­ronmentally sustainable energy at an affordable price is one of the goals of the strategy. The implementation of the strategy requires large investments in the energy system and a conversion from black to green with the inclusion of large amounts of renewable energy sources.

In the Paris Agreement, South Africa has committed to letting greenhouse gas emissions peak between 2021- 2025 at a level between 398 and 510 Mt CO2 equivalents. Whether South Africa can achieve this result is entirely dependent on access to financial capital, technological development, and capacity building.

The Danish energy model is based on 40 years of experi­ence in restructuring the energy system with ambitious political objectives for renewable energy. The Danish transition shows that it is possible to combine economic growth with a substantial reduction in CO2 emissions. These concrete experiences will be utilised in the coop­eration for South Africa to achieve a cost-effective, flexible, well-functioning energy system with security of supply.

Related news: South Africa and Denmark pens green strategic partnership

A global showcase at the Danish Pavilion at COP27

With the biggest Danish COP delegation in history, Denmark looks forward to strengthening ties with international partners while using the opportunity to showcase tangible ways to deliver on public-private climate action. Learn more about side events and activities at the Danish Pavilion at COP27.

Read more about Denmark at COP27

Cooperation on political objectives and technical requirements

A basic precondition for growth, employment and equal opportunities is the approach to safe and clean energy. Therefore, the Danish Energy Agency cooperates with the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE), the Independent Power Producers Office (IPPO) and Es­kom on primarily three areas:

  1. Capacity development in energy planning and wind resource mapping
  2. Development of a liberalized energy market, grid plan­ning and stability with a high proportion of renewable energy sources
  3. Integration of renewable energy sources and grid codes

The purpose of the cooperation is to capacity build further within these areas based on our partners specific needs. The Danish Energy Agency can contribute to more effec­tive implementation of the South African political objec­tives and help to ensure that the technical requirements are in place.

In close cooperation, DMRE, IPPO, and the Danish Energy Agency will further develop competencies within energy planning and wind resource mapping to create a stronger interplay between the institutions and enable more effec­tive implementation of South African energy policy. These measures will make it more likely that South Africa suc­cessfully achieve its climate objectives as defined in the Paris Agreement as well as a just transition. Furthermore, the Danish Energy Agency and IPPO cooperate to stream­line their tender program of renewable energy sources with e.g. digital solutions and tendering planning to meet political and social objectives.

Related news: A new horizon for battery energy storage is rising in South Africa

Management tools and liberalization of the electricity market

Together, Eskom and the Danish Energy Agency will con­tribute to solving some of the challenges facing the South African energy system. This applies strategy, planning and technology. On a concrete level, this can e.g. be realised by creating a knowledge platform for strategic manage­ment information based on Danish experiences with the development of a liberalized electricity market. Further­more, the programme also looks at the possibility is to ensure a more effective integration of variable renewable energy sources. The cooperation must also contribute to better capacity within energy forecasts, operational plan­ning and re-prioritization of capacities, updated grid rules and requirements for a liberalized market for additional services.

Comoros UM case

Danish solutions across Africa

Through expertise, know-how, and investments, Denmark has in many cases contributed to creating specific solutions in African countries.

Read more about Danish solutions in Africa

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