South Africa is the largest economy in Africa, a member of BRICS and part of the G20 Group. But it is also the one of the world’s unequal societies, with a Gini Coefficient of 0.64; a country where one in four people lack access to electricity, and where unemployment sits between 25% and 36%. It is also the tenth largest emitter of carbon dioxide in the world and is an energy-intensive economy highly reliant on fossil fuels largely owing to an abundance of coal.
Coal accounts for 77% of the total primary energy mix and 95% of the electricity generation capacity in the country. The energy sector is the single largest source of GHG emissions, accounting for approimately 89% of the country’s total emissions. South Africa is faced with the dilemma of simultaneously reducing its emissions by diversification of its energy sources and weaning itself off its dependency on fossil fuels, while addressing the prevalent challenge of energy poverty.
WWF South Africa has decided to launch the Climate Solver platform in South Africa, to promote the use of innovative low-carbon technologies that reduce carbon emissions, as well as sustainable clean energy solutions that enhance energy access.
Nominations are now open. Please to visit South Africa’s Climate Solver website here for further details.
South Africa facts
Statistics South Africa, 2012
Greenhouse Gas Emissions for country:
547 million tons
2009 Greenhouse Gas Inventory, Department of Environmenta Affairs
Carbon emissions per capita:
9.2 metric tons of carbon
The World Bank Indicators
GDP per capita:
International Monetary Fund (IMF) Statistics