Jul 27, 2007
Singer, songwriter and activist promotes green energy in AfricaBack
Agriculture|Johannesburg|London|Africa|Aim|D1 Oils|D1 Oils Africa|Eskom|Fire|Helius|Helius Energy|Petrochemicals|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|Africa|Swaziland|Zambia|Biodiesel Producer|Biomass Energy-generation Plants|Energy|Green Energy|Oil|Petrochemicals|Renewable Energy|Energy|World Trade Organisation|Alex Worrall|Bob Geldof|Demetri Pappadopoulos|Penny Healy|Power|BIOFUELS
© Reuse this
The company is currently in discussion with Eskom to supply the South African power utility with renewable energy, generated mainly from biomass.
Speaking at a press conference in Johannesburg last week, Geldof said that green energy could stimulate the economic growth required to lift Africa from poverty.
He pointed out that the failure of the Doha Development Round – the World Trade Organisation nego- tiations that aimed to lower trade barriers around the world, permitting free trade between countries of varying levels of prosperity – and the unlikelihood of a standalone trade agreement for Africa made it all the more important to find a solution for Africa’s farmers.
Geldof, who has been associated with various charity drives focusing on Africa – including Live Aid and Live 8 – spoke to the media after returning from a trip to Swaziland, where he visited jatropha curcas plantations planted by biodiesel producer D1 Oils.
Pointing to a jatropha curcas seedling on the table, Geldof said that “the potential effect of this little fellow is enormous”.
Geldof said that he was impressed by the “life-changing” potential that the cultivation of jatropha curcas trees could have on poverty-stricken African communities.
The oil expelled from the tree’s seeds can be processed into biofuels and the remaining plant material can be used to fire biomass energy-generation plants.
“I do not use the word ‘life-changing’ lightly,” Geldof said, adding that jatropha curcas was the first solution that he had seen in his 23 years of involvement in African causes that offered Africans jobs, cash crops and economic power.
Geldof was accompanied by Helius Energy chairperson Alex Worrall and Helius Energy cofounder and D1 Oils Africa CEO Demetri Pappadopoulos.
Pappadopoulos said that every hectare of jatropha curcas would produce 2,7 t of oil and 4,4 t of biomass.
D1 Oils Africa has obtained the rights to plant more than 40 000 ha of jatropha curcas in Africa, including Swaziland and Zambia.
However, the South African Department of Agriculture is yet to publish its policy on jatropha curcas, which is currently viewed as an invasive tree.
Pappadopoulos said that the first power from jatropha curcas biomass could be produced in the next three years when D1 Oils Africa expects to harvest the first commercial crops in Swaziland and Zambia.
Besides being in discussion with Eskom, Helius Energy is in talks with the government of Zambia concerning the establishment of new power plants and the upgrading of existing facilities.
The company is also in discussion with the Swazi government for a power supply agreement.
In another development, petrochemicals giant BP and D1 Oils Africa’s parent company, Aim-listed D1 Oils, have announced plans to establish a global joint venture based on the planting of jatropha curcas trees.
D1 Oils Africa corporate affairs executive Penny Healy tells Engi-neering News that the proposed joint venture – which is subject to the approval of D1 shareholders at an extraordinary general meeting to be held in the next few weeks – is “a huge vote of confidence” for cultivating jatropha curcas as feedstock for biodiesel production.
Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other News This Week News
Recent Research Reports
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.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
This Week's Magazine
South Africa remains an important manufacturing and export platform for Ford Motor Company, says executive chairperson Bill Ford. However, he adds that other countries on the continent are “becoming interesting”, and that the US carmaker is casting its net wider for...
Germany’s Max-Planck-Society (MPG) and the Max-Planck-Institute for Radio Astronomy (MPlfR) are investing €11-million (about R150-million) into South Africa’s MeerKAT radio telescope array programme. The money will be used to design, build and install S-band radio...
Infrastructure spend in sub-Saharan Africa will grow from $70-billion in 2013 to $180-billion by 2025, says PwC capital projects and infrastructure Africa leader Jonathan Cawood. This is one of the findings of PwC’s Capital Projects & Infrastructure report on East...
Private-owned defence and aerospace manufacturer Paramount Group and the Ichikowitz Family Foundation unveiled its Anti-Poaching Skills and K9 Training Academy in Magaliesburg last month.
The inclusion of Bluetooth to provide sub-three meter accuracy and heightened functionality for users is one of the ways to change existing wireless networks into engagement networks. An engagement network differs from common wireless networks in that it enables the...