After spending more than 30 years working in the electricity sector and becoming aware of problems such as copper theft, ongoing load-shedding and environmental damage caused by the continued use of fossil fuels to produce energy, Dr Mamoloto Tlabela decided to use renewable energy sources to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. He founded a solar photovoltaic company in order to manufacture, install and upgrade this renewable energy source for residential, commercial and industrial energy uses.
He says: “I think that these modest steps help achieve the United Nations’ sustainable development goals of a world free from environmental harm.” Tlabela’s organisation, Mamoloto Technologies, plans to diversify into wind, ocean waves and green hydrogen energy. Wind energy diversification has already begun, particularly in coastal areas where small household turbines are integrated with a solar energy mix.
“As the adage goes, ‘every generation borrows the planet from the next’, so we must ensure that the environment is sustainable for the future. The best way to sustain this planet is to preserve the environment by using renewable energy sources. Solar photovoltaic is not toxic to future generations, whether they are plants, animals or humans, and will never be depleted,” he says. Due to South Africa’s socioeconomic conditions, shack fires, caused primarily by fossil fuels, are of particular concern. Tlabela believes that solar photovoltaic energy that is free of hazards will help prevent shack fires, while saving lives and the surrounding environment.
“By harnessing solar power, it is possible to reach a large number of households electrical copper cabling is not distributed over a long distance, which makes it vulnerable to theft, because [its] installation is contained within a household,” he says.
Every generation borrows the planet from the next