Following the City of Joburg's Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Tuesday, Executive Mayor of the City, Parks Tau dropped by the John Robbie Show to outline 5 key areas of intervention for the fiscal period ahead:
The power situation is serious. We have to undertake load shedding due to our buying eletricity from Eskom. We do implement some mitigating measures - we've rolled out ripple control relays years ago and we used those through switching off of geysers and we've used Kelvin Power Station which generates about 150 MW of electricity. We're currently in discussions with business, large power users, to see what joint initiatives we can have with business as the City that enables us to mitigate load shedding. We've got a licence for an independent power producer on our waste to energy plant in Robinson Deep - that should come online towards the end of this year.
We, in 2011 said that we anticipate that we would reach - in the medium term, 2015/2016 - equilibrium between water supply and demand, on the basis of growth in demand in the City of Johannesburg. I'm happy to say that notwithstanding the fact that the allocation of water to Johannesburg has remained constant over the past few years, we've maintained the same reserve margin - meaning that we're actually using less water. This is as a result of the interventions that we have made. We have already invested in a pipe replacement program: we've already done, in the previous financial year, just under 200 km and in the current financial year we've already done 80 km. We intend to by 2017 replace 900 km of pipeline.
3. The Blue Economy
This is almost a step up from the Green Economy. It's about investing in initiatives that will allow us to grow the economy whilst mitigating against climate change and other resource sustainability issues. The thing with Green Economy is it's an expensive solution to some of these problems - this is about finding cheaper solutions (Blue Economy). We're looking at 29 technologies given to the City of Johannesburg.
Through both City initiatives and community-based initiatives, we've seen a reduction in incidents. It's always very important to celebrate the fact that we're now off the Top 50 list of cities, but this is still a problem. We've invested in an Integrated Operations Centre, which is about establishing a data management support centre that would be linked to a CCTV and other technologies which help to mitigate and investigate crime.
We've turned around the situation from a financial point of view as an organisation, we've increased our budgets for the companies - the JRA has increased threefold in terms of its budget to resurface roads - so we will hold them to account over particular service standards. Yesterday we said to the boards that we are appointing, that here's a draft service level agreement on the basis of this; come back to us before the end of this financial year so that we can sign off on particular service level agreements.
Listen to the full conversation below