Electricity Intensities of the OECD and South Africa: A Comparison

Roula Inglesi
Department of Economics, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa

James N. Blignaut
Department of Economics, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa

Ladda ner artikelhttp://dx.doi.org/10.3384/ecp11057960

Ingår i: World Renewable Energy Congress - Sweden; 8-13 May; 2011; Linköping; Sweden

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 57:28, s. 960-967

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Publicerad: 2011-11-03

ISBN: 978-91-7393-070-3

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


Improving a country’s electricity efficiency is considered one of the important ways to reduce a country’s greenhouse gas emissions. This paper’s main purpose is to compare the South African total electricity intensity with these of the OECD members; in order to establish a sense of South Africa’s relative performance. These results will assist in ascertaining possible scope for improvement; and if such exits; determining in which of the industrial sectors. To calculate the electricity intensities; we defined them as the ratio of electricity consumption to total output and then compare the South African with their OECD counterparts in total and disaggregated levels. For some of the countries the data were not sufficient for analysis over a long time period. Our results indicate that South Africa not only suffers from higher total and sectoral intensity levels but also the gap between them is increasing at an alarming rate. We conclude that for South Africa to improve its industrial competitiveness and achieve its stated commitments to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions; it will have to improve its efficiency. This is likely to be achieved only through a concerted sector-specific approach.


Electricity; Intensity; South Africa; OECD; Comparative Analysis


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