SAIMC


SAIMC: From the office of the CEO: South Africa: spectator or participant?

February 2023 SAIMC


Johan Maartens.

A new study by the European Investment Bank, International Solar Alliance, and the African Union, has detailed the staggering potential of green hydrogen in Africa as well as the steps required to achieve this. According to the study, large-scale green hydrogen generation will enable Africa to supply 25 million tons of green hydrogen to global energy markets.

Enter COP26

COP26 was the 2021 United Nations climate change conference. Before this conference, the UK worked with every nation to reach an agreement on how to tackle climate change. The package of decisions consists of a range of agreed items, including strengthened efforts to build resilience to climate change, curb greenhouse gas emissions, and provide the necessary finance for both.

Enter South Africa

The funding initiative of CPD26 spurs change through existing structures. In the case of South Africa, funding will take place using South Africa’s existing structures, such as Eskom.

The COP26 funds are intended to retrain employees to move from a coal-based industry to a green hydrogen industry. If this does not occur, people in the coal industry will lose their jobs. Beneficiaries of these funds will no doubt inform anybody who wants to listen that the lack of transformation, COVID, and the fourth industrial revolution caused their demise.

Have large-scale retraining programmes for employees in the coal industry or training new entrants into the fourth industrial revolution started with all assistance coming from abroad? How many people will lose their jobs due to the fourth industrial revolution? Maybe the right question is: “How many more people will lose their jobs due to funds misappropriated or mismanaged?”

Will South Africa be a spectator or a participant? That is the question.

Yours in automation,

Johan Maartens


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