South Africans being urged to save electricity

August 6th, 2012 - 1:20 pm ICT by IANS  

Cape Town, Aug 6 (IANS) At a time when the country is faced with an increased pressure of electricity shortage, a massive public awareness drive has been launched in South Africa, Xinhua reported.

The campaign aims to encourage South Africans to cut electricity usage by at least 10 percent.

According to authorities, with the participation of local celebrities to drive the campaign’s messages at road shows in the country’s nine provinces, the 49M campaign seeks to encourage 49 million South Africans to save electricity, according to the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS).

Jointly organised by the public electricity facility Eskom and the Department of Public Enterprise, the campaign is taking place amid signs that a load shedding could happen like in 2008 when massive blackouts gripped large parts of the country, if households did not change their behaviour in electricity consumption.

“The risk for load shedding is very low, in fact I have said load shedding is not in my vocabulary but if we don’t save energy as we should anything is possible and we don’t want to go there,” Eskom Board Chairperson Zola Tsotsi said in remarks published by the local media SAnews.

“I say that we must as South Africans all get involved in energy savings and the way to do that is by using electricity properly as residents and as businesses,” Tsotsi said.

Organisers, through this campaign, want to deliver a message that electricity wastage was not only putting severe pressure on the national grid but was also leading to job losses and increased poverty.

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