Power problems affecting SA Psyche
The wave of optimism that has been the prevalent for the past 36 months or so has undoubtedly come to a grinding halt, with a little help of ANC infighting. Posts like this at SA Rocks ("SA Rocks promotes the good things that happen every day in South Africa.") are indicative of the mood of ordinary South Africans. An Aussie immigrant puts it very succinctly in this great post entitled "I have the Sheds!" Local blog aggregator Muti's top tag is by far Eskom and the top voted posts are becoming full of posts with expletives in the headings.
The repercussions are now being felt on a macro level as the rand falls, obviously as a result of a slowing of investment and the acceleration of capital outflowing as investors foresee a long term slowing of large scale infrastructure projects reliant on a constant reliable energy source. The growth rate, currently the fall guy for the crisis, is due to come to a grinding halt. Not to mention the outages now becoming evident in the rest of the SADEC countries as Eskom pulls the plug on their supply as it endeavours to, quite rightly, ensure it keeps is local customers supplied first.
So what is a citizen of this beautiful country to do? Again SA Rocks has a great list of things one can do during power cuts ... er sorry ... load shedding. But we need to find answers so that we don't need to get to use these great suggestions in the first place. Increasing pressure on the utility and government is an obvious answer. However this situation has been brought on by years of non-action by our current administration. Things are been set in motion now, but these are all long-term solutions. Many have suggested, and promised, to sue Eskom and the government. All this will achieve is money going to individuals and corporations when it should and be used to assist in the alleviation of the problem.
There is however something positive that can be gained from all of this. The power cuts effect all of us. The haves and the have nots. Suburban and rural residents. Black, white, coloured and purple population. Those using public transport and those with their own means of mobility. Perhaps other than success on the sports field, this can be the great uniter?
So we have only have two things are can, and in my humble opinion, should do.
- Reduce our power consumption. This alone will not make the problem go away but it makes us good citizens. Less consumption has the added benefit in that it assists in reducing pollution. Click here are some tips to assist you reduce consumption.
- It's very important that those in power suffer the consequences of their bad planning. The inevitable changing of the guard must to deflect the our attention. We need to use our vote to ensure a more effective political mix. Those currently in power have let us down and those that replace them need to know that this will not be allowed to happen again.