http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 14.61Change: -0.08
R/$ = 10.57Change: -0.06
Au 1302.43 $/ozChange: -1.52
Pt 1440.50 $/ozChange: -4.00
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Nelson Mandela 1918 - 2013   Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science & Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Jan 27, 2012

The CSIR is stumbling boldly where angels fear to tread

Back
Cape Town|DURBAN|Pretoria|Energy|Eskom|Gas|Industrial|Power|PROJECT|Renewable Energy|Siemens|Turbines|South Africa|Carlton Centre|Electricity Supply|Energy|Gas-turbine Stations|Maximum Electricity Demand|Wind Energy Farms|Mossel Bay|Western Cape|Environmental|Power|Turbines|Energize Magazine
cape-town|durban|pretoria|energy-company|eskom|gas-company|industrial|power-company|project|renewable-energy|siemens|turbines-company|south-africa|carlton-centre-facility|electricity-supply|energy|gasturbine-stations|maximum-electricity-demand|wind-energy-farms|mossel-bay|western-cape|environmental|power|turbines-person|energize-magazine
© Reuse this



The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) was established in 1945.

The Scientific Research Council Act of 1988, as amended by Act 71 of 1990, states that “the objects of the CSIR are, through directed and particularly multidisciplinary research and technological innovation, to foster, in the national interest and in fields which in its opinion should receive preference, industrial and scientific development, either by itself or in cooperation with principals from the private or public sectors, and thereby to contribute to the improvement of the quality of life of the people of the Republic, and to perform any other functions that may be assigned to the CSIR by or under this Act”.

Hey, isn’t that impressive? Huh? Well, I afraid that the gold in the halo is looking a bit unpolished when you read the offering from the CSIR which purports to be the environmental- impact assessment (EIA) report for four wind energy farms in the Western Cape. The EIA has an impressive beginning, listed under ‘Need for the Project’: “The Western Cape province is currently facing considerable constraints in the availability and stability of electricity supply . . . and the Western Cape is reliant on the import of power.

“The province’s maximum electricity demand of 3 500 MW to 3 900 MW cannot be met by the transmission lines connecting the Western Cape to the national grid. Accordingly, pressure on local generation capacity, most notably the Koeberg nuclear power station (two units with a combined maximum capacity of 1 800 MW), is such that, if one reactor at Koeberg is off line, the entire province experiences supply shortages. “Accordingly, the need has been identified to generate additional power in the province.”

Whoa! Is this really true? Well, yes, it was once – in 2008. In fact, the report mentions that this information is from a 2008 edition of Energize magazine – four years ago. Too bad it was not from Eskom’s transmission department in 2011. But it is no longer true. Without Koeberg 1 and 2, there are three gas-turbine stations and the Palmiet pumped-storage scheme, which can supply peaking power to keep the lights on.

Further, Eskom is building additional lines to the Western Cape right now, so the need for local generation falls away. But the real Lulu is the assumption that wind turbines will reduce the demand in the Western Cape. Hello? Hello? The peak demand will only be reduced if the wind happens to be blowing at a reasonable speed. Which, for 70% of the time, it isn’t. Nobody in his or her right mind would base an argument for wind power on an electrical peak demand for a province.

The report states: “Siemens 2.3 MW turbines and WinWinD 3 MW turbines are used as typical examples of the types of turbines envisaged. These turbines have a hub height of 60 m to 100 m [and] a blade diameter of between 70 m and 112 m.”

Further on, it says that 70 turbines are proposed, located at Albertina, Heidelberg, Swellendam and Mossel Bay. Got that? Not too hard? Simply put, the distance from the ground to the top of the blade will be between 130 m and 212 m. For the 130 m turbines, each turbine, plus blades, will be taller than all but 15 buildings in the whole of South Africa. The 212 m turbines will only be topped by the Carlton Centre in Johannesburg and will be way taller than any building in Cape Town, Pretoria or Durban.

And they are planning to erect 70 of these along the freeway to the Garden Route. But don’t worry – the CSIR has got it covered. It states: “Visual impacts: medium to high impact on landscape character (negative), but could be perceived as a positive impact as the project represents a move towards renewable energy.”

I can see it now – when faced with a vista of 44 turbines around Mossel Bay, the tourist whips out a camera and takes photos of the completely stuffed-up view, since it represents green energy. Hello? Hello? Part Two next week: The CSIR blunders on.

Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Terry Mackenzie-Hoy News
It is all too easy for an ex-tour guide to decide to become an environmentalist and, thus, an expert on power generation and supply. Next, the said tour guide to starts telling everybody what the South African electrical generation mix should be (coal vs nuclear vs...
The Art of War is an ancient Chinese military treatise attributed to Sun Tzu, a high-ranking military general. I think a lot about warfare and I read a lot of military history books. This is not because I support war, either economic or political, but because there...
I had hoped (really) to not write about the Oscar Pistorius trial but so many people have asked me (as an acoustics engineer) about noise propagation (of screams, gunshots, cricket bat noise) that I will settle it all, once. Witnesses state that they heard screams...
Article contains comments
More
 
 
Latest News
Updated 12 minutes ago The South African Short-term Insurance Association (SAIA) on Wednesday called on motorists to be careful when driving during the coming Easter Weekend. This warning followed a call for caution by the association in February when heavy rains caused damage to roads and...
Updated 1 hour 9 minutes ago Safair on Wednesday said it would soon start selling tickets for FlySafair flights after it secured a licence to operate a scheduled passenger low-cost domestic air service. The Air Services Licensing Council (ASLC) granted Safair – an aviation expert currently...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Steel 2014: A review of South Africa's steel sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Steel 2014 report provides an overview of the global steel industry and particularly of South Africa’s steel sector over the past year, including details of production and consumption, as well as the country's primary carbon steel and stainless...
Projects in Progress 2014 - First Edition (PDF Report)
This publication contains insight into progress at the delayed Medupi and Kusile coal-fired projects, in Mpumalanga and Limpopo respectively, as well as at the Ingula pumped-storage scheme, which is under construction on the border between the Free State and...
Automotive 2014: A review of South Africa's automotive sector (PDF Report)
The report provides insight into the business environment, the key participants in the sector, local construction demand, geographic diversification, competition within the sector, corporate activity, skills, safety, environmental considerations and the challenges...
Construction 2014: A review of South Africa's construction sector (PDF Report)
Construction data released during 2013 hints at a halt to the decline in the industry during the last few years, with some commentators averring that the industry could be poised for recovery. However, others have urged caution, noting that the prospects for a...
Electricity 2014: A Review of South Africa's Electricity Sector (PDF Report)
This report provides an overview of the state of electricity generation and transmission in South Africa and examines electricity planning, investment in generation capacity, electricity tariffs, the role of independent power producers and demand-focused initiatives,...
Defence 2013: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s 2013 Defence Report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key players in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the defence sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial...
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
Updated 4 hours ago There is enough water in South Africa to supply communities and the economy, even if some activities may be constrained, such as agriculture in the Limpopo, says National Planning Commission commissioner Mike Muller. 
Muller was also the director-general from 1997...
South African antenna designer and producer Poynting and provider of professional products, system integration and implementation and commissioning services for the broadcast and telecommunications markets in South Africa, African Union Communications (Aucom),...
Industrial automation giant Festo has been displaying some of the its ongoing research projects and latest automation developments and products at the Hannover industrial fair from April 7 to 11, as part of its Integrated Automation – The Next Steps theme. The...
South African retail companies are responding to the way in which e-commerce is changing their engagement model with customers by improving customer engagement channels and order fulfilment intelligence, says industrial and retail software company JDA Europe, Middle...
In support of the South African government’s mandate to create more jobs and promote sustainable development, multilevel marketing company Amway’ business model aims to assist government in easing the startup of business and encourage an entrepreneurial mindset...
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks