South Africa: Eskom miners need new jobs for energy transition to succeed

By David Whitehouse
Posted on Thursday, 21 April 2022 06:00

A man walks past electricity pylons, in Soweto
Electricity pylons of the defunct Orlando Power Station in Soweto, South Africa, January 24, 2022. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko

Finding a future for South Africa’s coal miners will be essential to achieving energy transition, Saliem Fakir, executive director of the Africa Climate Foundation (ACF), tells The Africa Report.

Retraining for miners, which leads to jobs, will be key in persuading unions to buy in to plans to transition away from coal, Fakir says. They could be retrained to mine other minerals, or to work in agriculture or factories, he says. “It needs to be backed by a proper plan and fiscal support.” The ACF, which is based in Cape Town, works with international charities on climate change issues.