Is Renewable Energy Viable to South Africa? Essay

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In this essay I will be discussing whether renewable energy is economically viable in South Africa. Many factors need to be taken into account when discussing this topic, for example, the cost of building the sources and how much it would cost to run the source. We also need to take into account how much electric energy can be produced from these sources and whether that will be enough to support the energy usage of South Africa. The one of the two main problems with renewable energy is the amount of usable energy generated from them in comparison to other forms of non-renewable energy. With our energy grid already under strain, is using renewable energy worth getting into, and if it is, how will we manage to cope with the nations demand …show more content…
The power station is economically viable because it is creating jobs and raising the GDP. The population of the area has doubled because of the jobs created by station. About 40% of the project cost was said to have been spent locally, this would mean that our GDP would grow. Eskom also say that the power station will also grow our GDP directly by 0.35% per annum.

Now we will look at the different forms of renewable energy and how economically viable they are. First lets look at wind power. Wind power makes use of turbines to to create electrical energy as the wind blows the turbine. According to Windustry the average cost of a 2MW Wind turbine is about R19 million, but with installation, it would cost around R37 million. That is the average cost of a turbine in the US and Europe, however, this cost is decreasing as the technology gets more advanced over time and this cost is considerably less than the cost a few years ago. 2MW of power is not a lot considering that the Medupi power station has a total capacity of 4 800MW. That would mean a total of 2 400 turbines would have to be built in order to have the same capacity as the station. But, even considering this the turbines would only cost around R90 billion, just over half the cost of the Medupi station. We also need to take into account the cost of running the turbine. According to Wind Measurement International the cost of running a modern turbine is about 1.5% of the original cost

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