South Africa’s carbon emissions will start declining from 2025, 10 years earlier than previously expected, President Cyril Ramaphosa has said.
The president was one of 40 world leaders who participated in US President Joe Biden’s Summit on Climate Change. The virtual summit is to run over two days this week, and coincides with Earth Day, 22 April.
“South Africa is fully committed to enhancing its ambition and accelerating its climate actions,”” Ramaphosa said.
A study by independent climate and energy think tank Ember showed that in 2020, South Africa topped all other G20 countries in terms of reliance on coal for electricity. The data showed that 86% of South Africa’s electricity production came from coal. By comparison, the global average was 34%.
While fossil fuels still account for the majority (89%) of electricity production, it has been declining since 2015. Renewables have been slowly increasing their share in the electricity mix – having tripled since 2015 to 6%. The global average by comparison is 9.4%.