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Journal of Energy in Southern Africa

On-line version ISSN 2413-3051
Print version ISSN 1021-447X

J. energy South. Afr. vol.21 n.1 Cape Town  2010


An analysis of energy consumption for a selection of countries in the Southern African Development Community



Bruno Merven; Alison Hughes; Stephen DavisI

IEnergy Research Centre, University of Cape Town




This paper examines the energy consumption, supply and resources of some of the countries in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) in 2005, the base year for this analysis. The region is rich in energy resources and currently enjoys relatively stable and affordable electricity. Except in the case of Botswana, Mauritius, Namibia and South Africa, final energy demand is dominated by the residential sector in the form of biomass. Energy consumption or final energy demand in Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe is projected to 2030 using a Long Range Energy Alternatives Planning (LEAP) model in a 'business as usual' scenario, the other countries being left out because of poor quality data. The projections are carried out by relating historic sectoral GDP and population growth in each country to energy demand and then using the historical link and the projections of these drivers to project energy demand. The analysis under this 'business as usual' scenario seems to indicate that we can expect to see a large increase in consumption in these countries, especially in the form of biomass and electricity. In both cases, supply is a concern. Having established what the present resources are; what some of the supply elements are currently in place; what the base-year demand is; and some basic relationships between demand and socio-economic drivers, this paper sets the stage for further studies that include the future energy supply; regional trade; and scenario analysis using indicators of sustainable development for the region. However, further analysis of the regional energy system, is only valuable if it is supported by good data. A reliable energy balance is needed for the countries not modelled here, and in the case of the modelled countries, better data is also needed, especially in the use biomass.

Keywords: biomass, SADC, energy resources, energy consumption, renewable resources, LEAP model



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Received 24 February 2009
Revised 9 February 2010



* The analysis could not be performed on all the SADC countries, based on the data that was available at the time.

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