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Power security now in our hands, says Port Elizabeth business

Power security now in our hands, says Port Elizabeth business

Consumers need to secure their own energy future and play a more proactive role in managing South Africa’s power shortage

That was the word from Nelson Mandela Bay Chamber of Business Renewable Energy Task team member, Gareth Burley, at the launch of the Power On Exhibition at 39 on Church Conference Centre in Walmer on Thursday.

The Power On Expo at the Walmer Park Shopping Centre Underground Parkade on 8 and 9 August, will expose to the public more than 100 different power solutions and appliances, from a flash light to an off the grid solution, organisers said.

Burley said that consumers of electricity both residential and business had to be part of the solution by implementing energy saving measures and start exploring  energy generating solutions given the rising costs and long term duration of loadshedding in South Africa.

“Why is it that every time the power goes off most consumers express horror, as if we  didn’t know loadshedding is a long term reality we face in South Africa. With pending price increases and the threat of more loadshedding now is the time to get educated on what options exist!”

“Even more bizarre is the number of businesses that do not have an energy generating solution and simply close shop at great expense when loadshedding takes place.’’

“Energy consumers need to  start generating their own power. How they do that and at what cost can be a complex decision, which perhaps explains the low level of personal generation’’, Burley said.

In a statement issued yesterday (24 June 2015) Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber CEO Kevin Hustler said the member companies of the Chamber in the Metro who employ approximately 60 000 people is deeply concerned about the effect the high cost of electricity has on the continued viability of their businesses, and the threat to employment in Nelson Mandela Bay.

 "Electricity prices have increased fourfold (quadrupled) in Nelson Mandela Bay since 2008. The effect of such increases on the economy had been devastating in terms of employment and de-industrialisation. Collectively five companies in the manufacturing sector had already shed 950 jobs between 2010 and 2012 in the city because of the high cost of electricity. Compounded to this, there is uncertainty around future electricity supply, which is affecting local investor decisions and damaging the confidence of potential foreign direct investors,” Hustler said.

Concerning Power On Hustler said: “While we oppose unreasonable increases it is also clear that energy users must intensify their drive to install energy saving solutions, which this exhibition will facilitate.’

Inkanyezi Event Organisers CEO Andrew Binning said Power On Expo, which joins the company’s stable of exhibitions, including award-winning  South African Automotive Week and the Working World Expo, aimed to make the purchasing decision simple for users.

“The exhibition will bring together the most innovative and comprehensive range of energy solutions, under one roof, which allows visitors the opportunity to discuss, touch and compare products and their providers at one location within a few hours, Binning said.

He said more than 10 000 visitors were expected at the show over the Saturday and Sunday of the long weekend with Sunday being Womens’ Day.

One of the major draw cards for visitors is an attendance lucky draw prize of a complete “grid connected solution’’ valued at R100 000 sponsored by Microcare Solar Components, QDM Solar and Rubicon SA which includes photo voltaic panels, batteries and inverter in addition to the installation.

The show will be open from 9am to 5pm. 

Visitors pay R20 for access.  Children under 12 enter free.

CAPTION:  CEO Inkanyezi Events Andrew Binning, Gareth Burley of The Southern African Association for Energy Efficiency who is also  a member of the Chamber’s Renewable energy task team and Greg Blandford of Rubicon SA at the launch of the Power On Expo.