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    Roundtables on Energy Choice and History of South African Innovations Colloquium


     July 17 2015

    On the 17 July 2015 MISTRA and the National Advisory Council on Innovation (NACI), hosted two parallel roundtables on Energy Choice and South African Innovations.

    The keynote address was delivered by Sir Mark Walport, Chief Scientific Adviser for the government of the United Kingdom on Innovation: Managing risk, not avoiding it.

    Roundtable 1: Roundtable on Energy Choice

    The Energy Choice roundtable discussed South Africa’s identification of nuclear and shale gas as viable energy choice to address the “energy challenge”.  The roundtable examined the available energy options and institutional capacity to bolster electricity supply and lower energy demand. A critical part of the deliberations at the workshop examined the reasoning behind the country’s strong focus on new nuclear and shale gas as long term energy options, despite numerous cost considerations, risk scenarios, environmental damage and global trends that disprove these choices. 

      • Speakers included:

        ·     Words of welcome and Introduction:  Mr Joel Netshitenzhe (Executive Director, MISTRA)Energy Choice RT JN.pdfEnergy Choice RT JN.pdf

        ·      Keynote Speaker: Sir Mark Walport (Chief Scientific Adviser, United Kingdom Government)

        ·      Energy Technologies:  Mr Kevin Nassiep (NACI Council Member) K Nassipe NACI.pdfK Nassipe NACI.pdf

        ·  Opening Remarks: Ms Tshilidzi Ramuedzisi (Chief Director: Planning, Department of Energy) Tshilidzi Ramuedzisi.pdfTshilidzi Ramuedzisi.pdf


        PANEL DISCUSSION: The nuclear and shale gas policy orientation and implications (including relevance to the IRP and NDP).

        ·      Legal, environmental and social ramifications of fracking and nuclear: Dr David Fig (Biowatch SA)

        ·      Economics of Nuclear Energy and Technologies: Mr Tom Harris Tom Harris.pdfTom Harris.pdf

        ·      Development of the gas market in South Africa: Ms Wrenelle Stander (Sasol)

        ·      Questionable nuclear build commitment, not aligned with the IRP and NDP:  Ms Ellen Davies (WWF)

        ·      Environmental effects of shale gas fracking in the USA, Botswana and South Africa: Mr Jeffrey Barbee (Alliance Earth) Barbee.pdfBarbee.pdf

        ·      Economics of Renewable Energy (solar and wind): Dr (Professor) Tobias Bischof-Niemz Bischof Niemz.pdfBischof Niemz.pdf

    Roundtable 2: The History of South African Innovations Colloquium

    ​This MISTRA research project covers the evolution of South African systems of innovation from the pre-colonial era to the present.  It takes a broad view of the system of innovation concept in order to capture institutional as well as technological change and innovation.  This approach enables the grounding of systems of innovation in the relevant economic, political, cultural and historical contexts.  From this perspective, the formation of systems of innovation over time may be seen as an ongoing process of evolution and mutation where local systems are constantly engaging with the regional and global environment, through exchange and collaboration, but also through conflict and subordination.  In taking a long historical view of the evolution of systems of innovation, this research seeks to highlight the essential contingency of these systems and as a result open up the understanding of the current state of the South African system to the various possibilities of structural transformation.

    To view programme for Roundtable 2: The History of South African Innovations Colloquium​: The History of SA Innovations Colloquium Programme.pdfThe History of SA Innovations Colloquium Programme.pdf

    Media Articles on the Energy Choice Roundtable: 

    Survival of the Unfittest.  Op Ed by Velaphi Msimang Op Ed Velaphi Msimang.pdfOp Ed Velaphi Msimang.pdf

    Nuclear Energy and Shale Gas may not be the best answer by Velaphi Msimang, The New Age, 17 July 2015 New Age Article.pdfNew Age Article.pdf

    ​​Warning on Nuclear Energy deal by Rapule Moatshe, Pretoria News, 18 July 2015 Pretoria News article.pdfPretoria News article.pdf

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