The Centre for Environmental Rights (CER) has now been recognised as a friend of the court in a dispute regarding whether municipalities have the authority to obtain electricity without permission from the Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy.
As reported by TimesLIVE, the City of Cape Town has brought a case against the National Energy Regulator, as well as the Minister of Energy.
In May 2019, the City was granted the opportunity to state its case as to why it would benefit from no longer relying on Eskom for electricity. “We are doing everything possible to move away from sole reliance on Eskom for our energy needs, while at the same time trying to become more resilient and sustainable through the use of cleaner energy such as renewable energy and transitional fuels such as natural gas,” said Mayco Member for Energy and Climate Change, Phindile Maxiti.
The CER was admitted as a friend of the court by a ruling at the High Court in Pretoria on Thursday, September 19.
“Local government has a constitutional duty to provide clean and healthy electricity, which does not pollute our air, water, soil, or damage our climate. The City of Cape Town’s plans to procure clean renewable energy capacity would be aligned with these obligations”, Nicole Loser, attorney at the CER, told TimesLIVE.
The main court application is predicted to go ahead in 2020.