Mar 23, 2012
SA’s industrial energy intensity falls, but still lags world averageBack
Africa|Industrial|Pipes|Projects|Africa|South Africa|USD|Energy|Energy Efficiency|Energy Efficiency Initiatives|Energy Intensity|Greenhouse-gas Emissions|Industrial Energy Intensity|Manufacturing|Manufacturing Value|Oil Equivalent|Pipes|Solutions|Environmental|Augusto Alcorta|Insulation
© Reuse this
In fact, the Industrial Development Report 2011 shows that South Africa’s industrial energy intensity fell from 1.2 toe for every unit of MVA in 1990, to 0.8 toe for a unit of MVA by 2008. These saving were better than those achieved in the rest of the Southern African region and similar to levels realised by countries with comparable income levels.
But in an address to a South African audience, Unido’s director of research and statistics Augusto Alcorta stressed that a significant gap remained between South Africa’s industrial energy intensity and the global average, which had declined to around 0.35 toe for a unit of MVA. In other words, South Africa’s industrial energy intensity remained more than double the world average
Therefore, more policy and firm-level efforts were required for the country to begin fully reaping the environmental and economic advantages associated with pursuing energy efficiency on a large scale.
Globally, industry accounts for 25% of all greenhouse-gas emissions and energy efficiency initiatives could play a significant role in reducing emissions.
But the economic spinoffs were equally compelling, particularly in a context where industry was spending $1-trillion a year on energy inputs.
A Unido survey of 119 energy efficiency projects in developing countries discovered an average payback period of 23 months and an average rate of return of 40% for projects of a five-year duration. In addition, the smaller, less complex projects, such as the insulation of pipes and the use of natural light and ventilation, yielded the largest rates of return.
“What really caught our attention was the high profitability of low investment projects – the low-hanging fruit – which indicated that energy efficiency is something that is worth exploring for small and medium enterprises,” Alcorta explained.
Unido estimates that there is still potential globally to save a further $230-billion through investing in energy efficiency, $165-billion of which could be saved in developing countries.
However, serious impediments remained to large-scale adoption, despite rising proof of environmental, economic and social dividends. Many firms lacked sufficient information, which made them reticent to invest in energy efficient solutions, while government policies and incentives were often inadequate to support adoption.
Policymakers, Unido asserted, should formulate a coordinated energy strategy, supported by monitoring and implementations mechanisms, that established targets, benchmarks and standards, including for sector-specific programmes.
Key policy approaches include laws and regulations, negotiated agreements, information-based instruments, new technology and innovation support, market-based instruments and financial facilities, the report stated.
Financial facilities, such as loans, guarantees, revolving funds and venture capital funds, were also required to increase the availability of capital and lower the cost and risks associated with energy efficiency programmes.
Edited by: Creamer Media Reporter© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Electricity News
International consulting engineering company Royal HaskoningDHV (RHDHV) has appointed Salani Sithole as South African MD, effective March 1. Sithole has been with the company for six years and, prior to joining RHDHV, held various positions in engineering consulting,...
Recent Research Reports
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
This Week's Magazine
National flag carrier South African Airways (SAA) is in an advanced stage of renegotiating its deal with European airliner manufacturer Airbus to acquire A320 single-aisle (or narrow body) aircraft. The aim is to replace ten of the aircraft still on order with five...
Worldwide, the main thrust in the ports industry over the past decade or more has been to increase efficiency. Traditionally, ports have been run by engineers and mariners and, in the past, increasing a port’s capacity was achieved by expanding the harbour. “That has...
What do you do when an elephant has a toothache? You call Dr Gerhard Steenkamp from the University of Pretoria’s (UP’s) faculty of veterinary science, Onderstepoort, one of only two elephant ‘dentists’ in the world.
The 2015 Sanlam/Business Partners Entrepreneur of the Year (EOY) competition was launched earlier this month in Johannesburg, with the main focus on creating and inspiring entrepreneurs to create jobs and boost the economy.
In a recent letter to the editor that I sent to Engineering News (Concerns regarding South African portion of Square Kilometre Array) and in a follow-up article elaborating further (We must start preparations to build our own synchrotron light source), I stated my...