Cabinet has given the green light for the implementation of the Green Hydrogen Commercialisation Strategy (GHCS), as announced on Thursday. Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni emphasized that this move aims to position South Africa as a major producer and exporter of green hydrogen.
The government has identified potential funding sources for green hydrogen projects, building on the extensive feedback received on the draft Green Paper from stakeholders. The GHCS is aligned with the Hydrogen South Africa Strategy, approved by the Cabinet in 2007, to prepare the nation for a hydrogen-based economy. This strategy falls within the framework of the Hydrogen Society Roadmap, developed by the Department of Science and Innovation and approved by the Cabinet in 2021.
Additionally, the Executive Authority welcomed the recent second South Africa Green Hydrogen Summit held in Cape Town, where Heads of Agreements were concluded to establish an SA-H2 Fund aimed at fostering the growth of the country’s green hydrogen sector with the goal of attracting $1 billion in funding. The Minister estimated that the hydrogen economy could contribute 3.6% to South Africa’s GDP by 2050 and create around 370,000 jobs.
Regarding electricity generation, Cabinet received an update on Eskom’s Generation Systems Performance, indicating that Eskom’s power generation capacity is currently averaging 28,615 MW, up from 27,410 MW in May 2023. Unplanned outages due to plant breakdown have also decreased, averaging 13,743 MW compared to 17,369 MW in May 2023.
Effective plant maintenance is credited for this reduction. Furthermore, Cabinet welcomed the return of Kusile Unit 1 ahead of schedule, adding an extra 800 MW to the grid, which is expected to help reduce the frequency of load shedding.