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  • Credit: © Greenpeace Africa / Mujahid Safodien

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A new, just energy system

A driving force in the Just Transition – but only one component of it – is the need for a new energy system to replace the current coal and oil fossil fuel based, dirty, unhealthy, wasteful and elite energy system. While this change has its roots in pressure to move away from fossil fuels, and relies on fast developing renewable energy technologies, it is equally concerned with public ownership of energy resources, decentralised energy systems, and people’s access to energy.

We call for a transformed, sustainable and just energy system:

  1. Which provides sufficient, affordable energy and services for everyone;
  2. With zero fossil fuels in the electricity sector and a coal power phase-out by at least 2040, and a zero fossil fuel economy by 2050;
  3. Which is supported by energy efficiency, including energy-wise house design such as insulation and orientation;
  4. Which includes the large-scale roll-out of high quality solar water heaters, to at least 75% of all households;
  5. In which electricity generation is socially owned and controlled at different levels. This will include mini-grids which can feed into the grid, or can be supplemented from the grid. The emergence of community generated electricity is supported;
  6. Which consists of 100% renewable energy generation;
  7. In which the entire renewable energy production chain is environmentally sustainable and socially just, including in its dealings with communities and workers;
  8. In which the roll-out of renewables is supported by a training and job creating strategy for renewables’ manufacture, construction and maintenance;
  9. In which there is no generation of electricity from coal by 2040, with an immediate moratorium on the granting of new prospecting rights for coal, and exploration rights for oil and gas;
  10. In which Eskom builds renewable energy generation capacity and short-term energy storage capacity;
  11. With long-term storage solutions for electricity actively developed;
  12. In which coal miners and coal fired power station workers are retrained and offered new jobs and other forms of transition support;
  13. In which regional coal economies are replaced with new economies that create new jobs and new livelihoods, particularly for women and youth;
  14. With a flexible and smart grid;
  15. Where oil-based (petrol and diesel) road transportation is completely replaced by electric vehicles and other sustainable modes of transport; and
  16. Which is well regulated, is based on the rule of law, and secures ecologically sustainable development.