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Date: 08 Jun 2012
Title: Gauteng's economy goes green
Johannesburg - Gauteng Economic Development Minister Qedani Mahlangu has committed herself to strengthening the province's response to climate change by announcing investments of up to R6 billion towards green economy projects.
The results would be the creation of more than 2400 jobs through various climate innovation projects over the next five years.
Delivering her budget speech in the legislature on Friday, Mahlangu stressed the importance of partnerships between the provincial government departments and municipalities in developing projects that would speed up development but keeping in line with South Africa's carbon emissions reduction targets and government's response to climate change.
She said Gauteng municipalities have identified a variety of projects to be implemented in the next three years including solar farms, efficient public street lighting, development of cycling lanes and upgrades of public transport.
Other projects include conversion of minibus taxis to be green friendly, setting up of a climate innovation centre and implementation of better waste management techniques, rooftop solar panels at households, businesses and shopping malls, schools and hospitals.
In an attempt to diversify energy sources within the province, Mahlangu told the legislature that a gas supply network will be introduced in various townships focusing on the roll-out of gas reticulation heaters to low and middle income households. The project will cost the provincial government an estimated R98 million with the amount inclusive of provision of subsidised gas stoves to deserving households.
A private investment worth R250 million of gas power was also being facilitated with projections that the project will produce 11.3 MW of energy by 2014.
"We have provided access to clean and reliable energy to 50 homes in Winterveldt through a pilot project," Mahlangu said. The department was in discussions with the minister of energy to become the implementing agent to roll out the projects. - BuaNews