The U.S. Mission in South Africa empowers South African renewable energy champions


The solar and wind industries have taken off and there is a strong case for renewable energy to play a role in South Africa’s energy future.  The U.S. Mission to South Africa has partnered with World Bank’s Connect4Climate and GreenCape to convert a general public awareness and understanding about renewable energy into tangible action that creates jobs, bolsters the economy and increases international collaboration.  Energy21: Exchange Hub in Cape Town on May 10 aims to equip global and local renewable energy champions to raise awareness about the remarkable advances in the renewable energy sector.

U.S. Consul General in Cape Town Teddy Taylor will open the event:  “South Africa’s renewable energy sector has become recognised as one of the country’s most notable success stories over the years. It is for this reason that we are using our collective experience to support this sector as it prepares to transition to its next phase of growth in South Africa’s energy future.”

The hands-on Cape event is the second Exchange Hub, following an earlier workshop held in late 2016 where local experts and participants echoed the need to champion South Africa’s renewable energy story.

Energy21:Exchange Hub will play an important part in South Africa’s Energy Month in May, an ideal moment to raise awareness about innovative and profitable clean energy solutions. Both the United States and South Africa have a history of innovation in the energy sector and we are working together to address our energy challenges while strengthening economic competitiveness and supporting international collaboration

“Now that we have collaboratively identified the challenges faced when amplifying South Africa’s renewable energy story, we intend to use the Cape Town workshop to equip participants with the communication know-how. Participants will be paired with communications experts to transform their powerful stories into effective content to engage audiences,” explains David Shelby, Director of Public Engagement at the U.S. State Department.

“This is not a once-off event – the conversations generated at the Energy21: Exchange Hub will continue after May with the intention of creating a strong and connected network within South Africa’s  renewable energy sector,” says Shelby.

He adds: “An Action Plan developed by Energy21: Exchange Hub participants will continue to inform our collective communications efforts throughout 2017.”


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