The vulnerability of the South African electricity transmission network infrastructure to weather and climate: A review




electricity supply; climate change; extreme weather events, electrical faults


Meteorological factors have an influence on global energy systems. This study reviewed some of the latest research contributions from other global studies on climate change impacts, energy transportation and international collaboration in the energy-meteorology sector. It is a summary of relevant South African research on energy demand, forecasting and vulnerability to meteorological conditions. International weather-energy partnerships are growing fast, while the Global Framework for Climate Services has provided a global framework for scientific collaboration across sectors to assist with climate-related risk management and decision-making. The uptake in developing regions has remained slow, however, particularly in Africa, where basic requirements such as meteorological observations are still sought. This review found that studies on the impact that future projections of climate change and variability might have on the South African electricity transmission network were inadequate. A deeper understanding of such impacts on the electricity infrastructure would assist considerably with risk management and decision-making; consequently contributing to the sustainable provision of electricity in South Africa.


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Author Biographies

M. Majodina, University of Pretoria

WMO Representative

ESA Office

Department Regional Activities

J. O. Botai, South African Weather Service

Dr. Joel Botai is a Chief Scientist for Applications Research at the South African Weather Service. He is responsible for develoment of innovative weather and climate information products and services for applications in the following socio-economic sectors: Agriculture, Energy, Finance, Health, Disaster Risk Reduction and Water Resource Management (2015-to date).

He is a former Senior Lecturer at the University of Pretoria, Department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology (2007-2015)



H. Rautenbach, South African Weather Service

  • Professor Rautenbach received his Doctoral degree in Meteorology in 1999 from the University of Pretoria. In his career he was appointed since 1988 to 1991 by the South African Weather Service. In 1992 he became Research Assistant in the Meteorology Group at the University of Pretoria, in 2000 he took over as coordinator of the Meteorology Group, and in 2006 he was appointed as Head of the Department of Geography, Geoinformatics  and Meteorology at the University of Pretoria. He is currently the Chief Scientist for Climate Change in the South African Weather Service since 2015.


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Impacts of weather and climate extremes on electricity transmission




How to Cite

Majodina, M., Botai, J. O., & Rautenbach, H. (2018). The vulnerability of the South African electricity transmission network infrastructure to weather and climate: A review. Journal of Energy in Southern Africa, 29(4), 51–59.