Time is running out for alternative energy solutions and across the globe, panic endures. But the energy crisis does not have to seem quite so apocalyptic. Paul Mesarcik and Frank Petousis explain why biogas is an apt solution in the light of destruction – especially in South Africa.
Everyone has heard about alternative energy. Solar panels, wind turbines and hydroelectricity are being discussed as though they are the sacred remedies to our energy crisis and impending global warming meltdown. The truth is, however good these sources of energy sound in theory, in practice, and especially in South Africa, these technologies still involve inhibitive start-up costs and unjustifiable investments in infrastructure.
It’s quite simple: the whole of Africa produces less than 5% of global carbon emissions, South Africa a percentage of that. We are truly an insignificant blip on the map of environmental threats when compared to the international heavyweights of China, India and the USA. At the same time, we suffer some of the world’s worst cases of poverty and lack of infrastructure. Can we really be expected to invest billions (and it really would cost that much) in solar panels and wind turbines when people don’t have homes or functional schools? Who are these solutions even helping? The reality of our country is that even those fortunate enough to have a roof over their heads often do not have the power lines to use the energy generated in any case. You may wonder why energy solutions should even be discussed, given that we have so many other headaches.