In recent years, South Africa has been facing an energy crisis because its major electricity supplier, Eskom, is struggling to keep the lights on. To counter the decreasing power supply and rising electricity prices, solar in South Africa has been identified as one of the solutions. While the high capital costs of installing solar may dissuade potential investors, the larger issue is the need for more qualified installers in the industry. This is hindering the solar industry’s growth, both in terms of the number of grid-tied systems and commercial solar parks.
Despite the clear economic and energy benefits of solar energy in South Africa, the availability of certified installers remains a major challenge. Solar installers in the country must possess various qualifications, ranging from electrical engineering to solar panel installation. These qualifications are difficult to obtain and often require additional time and money to gain the necessary certifications.
This need for more qualified personnel is an obstacle to the growth of the solar industry in South Africa. It leads to higher prices for solar installations, and as a result, fewer people can afford to install solar energy systems in their homes. Moreover, the lack of highly trained professionals results in installers needing more skills to develop and service advanced solar applications required to connect grid-tied systems to the provincial electricity grid. Thus, the potential of solar power in South Africa is being hindered due to the inadequate number of certified personnel.
To tackle the shortage of qualified installers, the South African government needs to invest in training and certification programs specifically tailored to fulfil the solar industry’s requirements. In addition, a public awareness campaign should be launched to highlight the potential of solar energy and the industry’s opportunities. By taking these steps, South Africa could witness a surge in the number of qualified solar installers, who can then support the growth and development of the industry.
Ultimately, the current energy crisis and growing demand for solar energy in South Africa highlight the urgent need for more qualified installers. With proper government initiatives and public awareness campaigns, South Africa could fulfil this need and enable the solar industry to grow, providing clean energy to thousands of homes and businesses in the country.