News release: Sustaining future economic opportunities – Investing in the green economy in 2020
  May 13, 2020     News, Market Intelligence, Document, Library, waste, water, solar, renewable, REIPPP, greentech, green economy, waste sector desk, Sustainable Transport, sustainable agriculture, Solar PV, Energy Services

News release

May 2020

Sustaining future economic opportunities – Investing in the green economy in 2020


GreenCape’s 2020 Market Intelligence Reports, produced in partnership with the Western Cape Government’s Department of Economic Development and Tourism, are now available for download online.


Please note: Covid-19 has created unprecedented uncertainty in global markets. While we have attempted to be accurate in the projections of market sizing, there remains a high level of uncertainty. The 2020 Market Intelligence Reports were published and printed in March, before lockdown. It is anticipated that global economic stimulus packages being developed to revitalise the global economy after the acute Covid-19 crisis, would be geared towards technologies of the future, including a strong emphasis on scaling greentech solutions.


GreenCape’s annual Market Intelligence Reports (MIRs), developed in partnership with the Western Cape Government’s Department of Economic Development and Tourism, highlight the investment opportunities in key sectors of the green economy.


“Investment aimed at growing the green economy ensures the sustainability of future economic opportunities. It also creates jobs now, which remains a strategic priority for the Western Cape Government, especially at this time, when economic recovery is a critical focus,” said Minister David Maynier, Western Cape Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities. “The GreenCape Market Intelligence Reports are widely consulted resources referenced by local and global stakeholders who are making green economy investment decisions,” he added.


The 2020 MIRs include updated investment opportunities and highlights the relevant legislation context and potential market barriers and risks in: Energy Services, Utility Scale Renewable Energy, Electric Vehicles, Waste and Water. GreenCape also publishes a Sustainable Agriculture MIR in partnership with the Western Cape Department of Agriculture.


GreenCape’s sector desks are in the unique position to gather current insights from businesses active in the green economy, as well as from other key role-players in each of the sectors. The MIRs are focused on highlighting opportunities in the Western Cape, and they also include relevant national insights and context.


The following investment opportunities have been highlighted in each of the key green economy sectors for 2020. *


Energy Services

In response to changing demands, energy service providers are broadening their market offerings. The South African energy services market holds opportunities for equipment suppliers, project developers, technical advisors, and financial investors.


“There are three emerging opportunities for investors in the embedded generation market, namely a) rooftop PV system bundling with standardised contracting models; b) solar PV for energy resellers and c) operations and maintenance-only contracts,” said Reshmi Wolvers, GreenCape Energy Analyst. “Within the energy storage market, there is an emerging opportunity for behind-the-meter battery storage. The energy efficiency market has emerging opportunities related to energy efficiency as a service, and the retrofitting of South Africa’s large stock of existing buildings,” she added.


Download the Energy Services 2020 MIR here.


Utility Scale Renewable Energy

“Accounting for nearly 9% of installed capacity, the South African utility scale renewable energy sector is showing growth and potential with over 3.9 GW of utility scale projects already connected and operational,” said Mandisa Mkhize, GreenCape RE Sector Desk.


The latest Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) 2019 allocations indicate 14 400 MW for wind, 6 000 MW for Solar Photovoltaic (PV) and a minimum of 4 000 MW of small-scale embedded generation (SSEG) to be procured by 2030, which has the potential of attracting in excess of R420 billion in the next 12 years.


Further market opportunities include an increase in local manufacturing potential in South Africa (wind energy (blade and tower) manufacturing, local PV panel manufacturing & local battery manufacturing); Utility scale batteries development and deployment; Municipalities exploring the option to procure directly from IPPs; Renewal and reissuing of Operations and Maintenance contracts of REIPPPP Bid Windows 1-4 projects; Refinancing of REIPPPP Bid Windows 1-4 projects.


Download the Utility Scale Renewable Energy 2020 MIR here.

Electric Vehicles

While South Africa (SA) has not yet joined the ranks of countries experiencing a steep rise in EV uptake, it is likely that this will change as battery prices continue to fall. The emerging opportunities remain largely in the manufacturing of electric buses, passenger vehicles and lithium ion batteries.


Download the Electric Vehicles 2020 MIR here.



“The South African waste economy continues to see a growing interest in the uptake of alternative waste treatment solutions and associated value chains. This has resulted in continued and increasing diversion of waste from landfill, both within the Western Cape, and the rest of South Africa. This is likely to accelerate in the next three to five years,” according to Sam Smout, GreenCape’s Waste Sector Desk. “Opportunities within the organic, e-waste, plastics and builders’ rubble sectors have the potential to add between R661.3 and R1 086.4 billion in value to the economy per year.”


Download the Waste 2020 MIR here.



“Water scarcity has been a key driver for investment in the Western Cape water sector due to severe drought conditions and expected longer-term water constraints in the region,” said Raldo Kruger, GreenCape Water Sector Analyst. “This year however, we see a shift towards longer-term investment opportunities to improve water security and resilience, as key enablers of economic development.”


“Specifically, the report focuses on insights and opportunities relating to two key urban water markets in South Africa, namely the industrial market and the municipal market,” said Ashton Mpofu, GreenCape Water Sector Analyst.


Download the Water 2020 MIR here.


Sustainable Agriculture

There are emerging investment opportunities in: remote sensing technologies for precision agriculture applications (driven specifically to improve water efficiency and climate adaptation); undercover farming, which includes low-tech infrastructure such as shade netting and higher-tech controlled environment agriculture systems; and well-established investment opportunities in renewable energy and conservation agriculture. This MIR is developed in partnership with the Western Cape Provincial Government Department of Agriculture.


Download the Sustainable Agriculture 2020 MIR here.


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