Energy Efficiency in South Africa

Energy Efficiency in Emerging Economies (E4) programme findings and work

South Africa has significant opportunities that could be unlocked through energy efficiency. By 2040 South Africa could be lowering its emissions by 25% from current levels and be saving households USD 2 billion a year.


Overview


The growth of the South African economy has driven an increase in energy use of 19%. In particular, economic output in the industry and services sector increased by 70% between 2000 and 2017. Structural changes resulted in an additional 10% energy use during that same period largely due to changes in transport modes and vehicle occupancy. However the economic movement away from energy intensive sectors offset a large part of these impacts.

Progress on energy efficiency in South Africa varies from sector to sector. Efficiency gains in transport and residential buildings since 2000 have been offset by worsening efficiency in industry and services. 

	Energy savings due to energy efficiency
Industry and services		-0.11909
Residential Buildings	0.02079
Passenger transport	0.0569
Freight transport	0.03748

{
   "title": {
      "text": "Energy savings due to energy efficiency (2000-17)"
    },
 
	"chart": {
		"type": "column",
"height": "50%"
	},
	"plotOptions": {
		"line": {
			"marker": { "enabled": true },
			"lineWidth":0
		},
		"column": {
			"stacking":"normal"
		}
	},
    "yAxis": {
       "title": {
           "text": "EJ"
       }
    },
    "tooltip": {
       "valueDecimals": 2,
       "valueSuffix": "EJ"
    },

"legend": {
		"enabled" : false
	},

"series":[{"colorIndex":"0"}, {"colorIndex":"7"}]  

}

Energy efficiency opportunities


Although energy demand has increased by 30% since 2000, the Efficient World Scenario shows that energy use could be reduced to 4% below current levels. This would save USD 2 billon of household energy expenditure per year by 2040 and the largest savings would be found in the transport (37%) and industry (37%) sectors.

In the EWS Scenario, CO2 emissions could also be reduced to 25% below current levels by 2040.

 	Historical	NPS	EWS

2012	0.412
2013	0.421
2014	0.435
2015	0.428
2016	0.417	0.417	0.417
2025		0.408	0.387
2030		0.392	0.357
2035		0.378	0.330
2040		0.374	0.313

{
              "chart": {
                "type": "line",
                "height": "40%"
              },
              "yAxis": {
                "min": 0.30,
                "title": {
                  "text": "Gt-CO2"
                }
              },
              "xAxis": {
                    "plotBands": [
                      {
                        "from": 2000,
                        "to": 2016,
                        "color": "#fafafa",
                        "label": {
                          "text": "Historical"
                        }
                      },
                      {
                        "from": 2016,
                        "to": 2040,
                        "label": {
                            "text": "Future"
                        }
                      }
                    ]
                  },
              "yAxis": {
                "min": 0.30,
                "title": {
                  "text": "Gt-CO2"
                }
              },
              "xAxis": {
"plotBands": [
{
"from": 2000,
"to": 2016,
"color": "#fafafa",
"label": {
"text": "Historical"
}
},
{
"from": 2016,
"to": 2040,
"label": {
"text": "Future"
},
"className": "nofill"
}
]
},
"legend": {
"align": "right",
"verticalAlign": "middle",
"layout": "vertical"
},
"plotOptions": {
"series": {
"zoneAxis": "x",
"zones": [{
"value": 2016
},
{
"className": "dotted"
}],
"marker": {
"enabled": false
},
"tooltip": {
"valueSuffix": " Gt-CO2"
}
}
}
}

As of today, only 5% of South Africa’s final energy use is covered by mandatory energy efficiency policies. Coverage was highest in the residential buildings sector, at 20%, due to codes and MEPS.

	Mandatory policy coverage 
Industry	0
Transport	3
Residential buildings	20
Non-residential buildings	8
Total	5


{
   "title": {
       "text": "Energy use covered by mandatory energy efficiency policies in South Africa"
    },
    "chart": {
       "type": "bar"
    },
    "plotOptions": {
      "column": {
         "stacking": "normal"
       }
    },
    "tooltip": {
      "valueDecimals": 0,
      "valueSuffix": "%"
    },
    "yAxis": {
      "max": 100,
      "title": {
        "text": "Energy use covered"
      },
      "labels": {
         "format": "{value}%"
      }
    }
}

The opportunities in the EWS for South Africa are very encouraging. The commitment of the government and the targets set in the National Energy Strategy of South Africa combined with continued efforts would enable it to unlock energy efficiency savings in multiple sectors.

Implementing MEPS for electric motors, a policy planned for the industry and mining sectors, would be an important first step to unlocking greater efficiency gains. Complementing this with measures that extend to the wider motor-driven system and other industrial equipment, specifically the implementation of energy management systems, could enable further savings.

Implementing vehicle efficiency standards would also help unlock efficiency gains in the transport sector, which has the greatest opportunity for savings in the EWS.

Our Work in South Africa


The E4 Programme has worked to support the development of the Post-2015 National Energy Efficiency Strategy. In 2015, the IEA published the Energy Efficiency Outlook for South Africa.

The E4 Programme is currently working with South Africa in developing industrial energy efficiency benchmarking to further unlock energy efficiency gains in the industry sector.

Related resources


Other resources