Home 2020-04-01T18:04:52+00:00

Renewable Energy Centre of Research and Development (RECORD)

South Africa is demonstrating its commitment to a more sustainable future growth path by supporting renewable energy and energy efficiency measures, together with skills development and job creation through fostering a green economy. South Africa is among the highest emitters of carbon dioxide in the world, currently ranked 12th in terms of top emitters per capita, since more than 75% of primary our energy requirement is derived from fossil fuels. The country responded to the urgent need to reduce fossil fuel dependency, diversify the energy mix and supply and reducing the country’s carbon footprint with a supportive policy and legislative framework to exploit the excellent renewable energy resources, especially wind and solar. South Africa’s renewable energy sector experienced explosive growth in the past few years with investment of more than $5.5 billion in 2012, up from $30 million in 2011- representing an impressive increase of 20,500%. The rapid investment growth over the past two years made South Africa the ninth-leading destination for clean energy investment among the Group of 20 (G-20) of the world’s developed and emerging economies – this after occupying the last spot in 2011. South Africa’s leading position has been secured through a supportive policy environment, coupled with a secure investment framework established by the Department of Energy’s (DoE) Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme or REI4P.

The contribution of a green economy to economic growth and job creation is furthermore promising and South Africa is preparing to play a leading role in renewable energy deployment.
SA has abundant natural resources that can be harnessed for energy production:

  • one of the best solar regimes in the world, measured at 4.5 to 6.6 kWh/m2 , one of the most abundant renewable energy resources in the country;
  • a reasonable wind energy resource (an average of 8 m/s measured at 80 m) is available in geographically dispersed locations, allowing for security of supply;
  • biomass for energy use is restricted due to water availability in South Africa, but energy from waste, utilising the estimated 60 – 70 million m3 of waste generated annually, is more readily available and exploitable;
  • despite limited water availability, 1400 MW of pump storage is currently utilised by Eskom from two sites in South Africa, while micro-hydro applications at specific sites offer further opportunities; and
  • a world-class wave energy (10 – 50 kW/m crest length) and ocean current (70 – 85 Sv peaking at 2 m/s) resource, is potentially exploitable upon the availability of commercially viable technologies.



A WIDELY read cover story on the impact of global warming in this week’s New York magazine starts ominously: “It is, I promise, worse than you think.” It goes on to predict temperatures in New York hotter than present-day Bahrain, unprecedented droughts wherever today’s food is produced, the release of diseases like bubonic plague hitherto trapped under Siberian ice, and permanent economic collapse. In the face of such apocalyptic predictions, can the world take solace from those who argue that it can move, relatively quickly and painlessly, to 100% renewable energy?

SANEDI through the Working for Energy programme has again conducted a successful exhibition and Community Outreach during a recent Science Unlimited event at Kwalata in Hammanskraal.

Record installations for wind and solar PV in 2014;164 countries with renewable energy targets; Renewables account for 59% of net additions to world’s power capacity; Policy-makers more attentive to green energy heating / cooling; Developing country investments on par with developed world, total $301 billion.

Oak Ridge, Tenn. – On March 11-12, Deputy Secretary Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall visited Oak Ridge. During her time at the site, she toured the Oak Ridge Reservation, led an employee all-hands meeting, met local officials, and served as a keynote speaker at the 2015 Oak Ridge Women’s Workshop—a day-long event with more than 200 participants from across the region.

As she traveled across the reservation, she stopped at the East Tennessee Technology Park for a first-hand perspective of the environmental cleanup happening there. Specifically, Deputy Secretary Sherwood-Randall watched demolition crews continue their progress at Building K-31. Workers have removed more than 60 percent of the facility, and they are more than 50 percent complete with the debris removal.

A peak in global energy-related emissions could be achieved as early as 2020 and at no net economic cost, the International Energy Agency said on Monday in its new World Energy Outlook Special Report on Energy and Climate Change. The Agency showed how to achieve an early peak in emissions as one of four key pillars that it believes are needed to make the upcoming UN climate talks a success, from an energy perspective.



To facilitate renewable energy research coordination, collaboration and dissemination of national and international renewable energy knowledge contributing towards a sustainable low carbon energy future.


To be recognised as the foremost institution for renewable energy research coordination and collaboration in SA.


SANEDI is a Schedule 3A Public Entity as of 31 December 2010, operationalised on 1 April 2011. Its mandate is to serve as a catalyst for sustainable energy innovation, transformation and technology diffusion in support of South Africa’s sustainable development. RECORD supports the mandate of SANEDI within the Clean Energy Solutions portfolio.

Core Activities

Targeted awareness creation regarding renewable energy in South Africa 2017-07-10T18:17:23+00:00

Against the background of renewable energy development in South Africa, the Governments of South Africa and the Federal Republic of Germany agreed in 2010 to implement an energy and climate programme via the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). The South African-German Energy (SAGEN) programme aims to promote investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency and thus supports the development of a sustainable energy sector in South Africa. Under the auspices of SAGEN, GIZ is cooperating with SANEDI and RECORD to achieve mutually agreed goals.

Contribute to renewable energy skills development 2017-07-10T18:17:46+00:00

RECORD recognises the importance of skills development to service the growing renewable energy sector in South Africa and cooperates with a variety of actors who provide training at different levels.

Facilitate renewable energy research collaboration 2017-07-10T18:17:52+00:00

RECORD aims to foster collaboration between renewable energy research and development stakeholders having common goals. This is achieved through collaborative funding and sharing of resources to ensure that applied research is not duplicated within the same field. RECORD strongly supports the formation of theme-focussed research clusters where trans-institutional cooperation, sustaining broad focus areas in renewable energy topics, is addressed.

Co-ordinate renewable energy research in South Africa 2017-07-10T18:17:59+00:00

In line with the legislative mandate of SANEDI, RECORD provides limited funding for applied renewable energy research conducted at tertiary institutions in South Africa. To ensure efficient use of limited research funds, RECORD coordinates renewable energy research according to national priorities and stakeholder objectives.