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Climate Politics

South Africa to ‘Open Floodgates’ for Private Power Generation

  • Generation capacity may almost double in 18 months, plan says
  • Households to be paid to produce electricity from solar panels
South African Power Plants Amid Pollution Clampdown
Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg

South Africa plans to try and resolve its chronic power shortage by making it easier for private companies to build plants and paying households and businesses to produce electricity from solar panels.

The urgent need to fix the country’s 14-year electricity crisis has been laid bare by five weeks of power outages that ended last week, the worst since the near-collapse of the grid in 2008. President Cyril Ramaphosa and the ruling African National Congress have been heavily criticized over their inability to resolve the problem, despite repeated promises to do so.