The City of Cape Town is partnering with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Southern Africa Energy Program (SAEP) to investigate appropriate mechanisms to unlock access to solar energy for more of Cape Town’s residents.

This forms part of the City’s efforts to establish an appropriate business model to stimulate the uptake of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems.

Partnerships are key

While the City has seen an increasing number of customers installing rooftop solar photovoltaic infrastructure costs are perceived to be prohibitive by most residents. Through the study the study the City will identify the most appropriate mechanisms for implementation and access for its customers based on legal and technical factors and what is most attractive to residents.

The City notes that solar projects will become more economically viable only if adoption rates are scaled up, solid public-private partnerships are formed and clear regulatory frameworks are put in place.

Meeting renewable energy targets

“The City is determined to build a more secure, cleaner and affordable energy future and we know that the technological solutions already exist to enable us to do this.

“This collaboration will bring us that much closer towards meeting our renewable energy targets by identifying solutions to the barriers that make it difficult for residents to access to clean and affordable electricity,” explains Xanthea Limberg, the City’s MMC for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services; and Energy.

“We have a number of initiatives under way to release Cape Town from its heavy reliance on Eskom. I am confident that the outcomes of this work will be hugely valuable in our committed drive to building a low carbon, resilient and resource-efficient city,” she adds.