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Brics energy ministers agree to cooperate to improve access, reduce emissions

South Africa’s Mineral Resources and Energy Minister, Gwede Mantashe, chaired a meeting of Brics Energy Ministers and officials where it was agreed that the countries would cooperate to on a range of energy matters. Camera Work & Editing: Shadwyn Dickinson. Recorded: 18.08.2023

18th August 2023

By: Terence Creamer

Creamer Media Editor

     

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Energy Ministers and officials from the Brics bloc met in Sandton on Friday to discuss potential areas of collaboration for improving access to secure and affordable energy, while transitioning to cleaner energy systems.

The meeting was chaired by South Africa’s Mineral Resources and Energy Minister, Gwede Mantashe, who reiterated his stance that the transition should address both the lowering of emissions and ongoing energy poverty.

He also repeated that South Africa, where a long-running imbalance between supply and demand has resulted in daily power cuts, would continue to pursue all technologies, including coal and nuclear, to improve its own security of supply.

However, there were also initiatives under way to accelerate the deployment of renewable energy, which currently contributed less than 10% of the country’s electrical energy.

Other participants to the meeting emphasised the importance of integrating social justice into the energy transitions under way in each country, as well as the importance of transmission-related investment to support the connection of renewable generation.

In a statement released following the meeting, the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) reported that the Ministers agreed that an “inclusive, diverse and holistic” approach to the energy mix was required to achieve sustainable energy supply while averting potential future disruptions in the sector.

Deliberations reportedly focused on programmes to promote energy cooperation with a view to “enhancing energy security, advancing universal access to energy, minerals for energy transitions and research and technological cooperation”.

The Brics countries also agreed that “balanced and economically sound” energy policies, based on national circumstances, should be employed to support energy security.

On minerals for energy transitions, the Ministers undertook to exchange best practices and standards in the development and beneficiation of minerals in the country of origin.

The DMRE reports that the delegates also committed to exploring various technologies and new materials that were central to global energy transitions and carbon reduction.

 

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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