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Electricity News

Engineers faced with fast delivery challenge

By: Sebastian Whyle     24th June 2016 Consulting engineering and environmental consulting firm JG Afrika MD Paul Olivier reports that the consulting engineering industry is faced with an increased demand for fast project delivery from clients.  

France, Switzerland to finance small-scale green energy projects in South Africa

By: Dylan Slater     24th June 2016 An agreement to finance a technical assistance programme to assist banks in financing small scale renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in South Africa was signed on May 26 by the French Agency for Development (AFD) and the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs of Switzerland (Seco).  

Microgrid technologies can help unlock electrification

By: Mia Breytenbach     24th June 2016 Large scale centralised generation will increase with the development of grid solutions, which will include an increase in focus on microgrid and standalone home systems, as well as off-the-grid, distributed generation solutions, expects advisory firm PWC Power, Capital Projects, and... 

Microgrid technologies can help  unlock electrification
ENSURED SUPPLY ABB’s microgrid uses national grid power, a solar photovoltaic (PV) installation, as well as a backup feed from four diesel generator sets

New nuclear programme localisation target likely to be 50%

By: Keith Campbell     24th June 2016 The South African government is looking at securing a local content level of 50% in the country’s proposed new nuclear power plant (NPP) programme. This was stated recently by South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) Board Chairperson Dr Kelvin Kemm at a press briefing at the Necsa... 

Slow economic growth challenges local engineering industry

By: Sebastian Whyle     24th June 2016 Infrastructure projects, consulting and project management services provider Aecom Africa CEO Carlos Poñe tells Engineering News that low economic growth in South Africa is a major challenge for the consulting engineering industry.  

Slow economic growth challenges local engineering industry
EVOLUTION OF ENERGY Aecom is extremely strong in renewables, and very strong in nuclear and in the decommissioning of nuclear plants, including nuclear waste

Eskom sees deeper cost cuts after workers' pay hike

By: Reuters     23rd June 2016 South African power utility Eskom's latest pay hike offer could lead the cash-strapped power utility into deeper cost cuts, the state-owned firm said on Thursday. Eskom confirmed that it had offered to pay 7% more to all blue-collar workers, upping its offer from 5.75%, during negotiations with... 

South Africa seen as attractive market amid surging global solar PV deployment

By: Terence Creamer     23rd June 2016 A new study assessing the future role of solar photovoltaics (PV) in the global electricity system suggests that the technology’s installed base could grow to between 1 760 GW and 2 500 GW by 2030 and identifies South Africa as among the most attractive markets for deployment. Solar PV capacity... 

South Africa seen as attractive market amid surging global solar PV deployment

$117.5m renewables deal to support 1 300 MW Africa roll-out

By: Terence Creamer     23rd June 2016 Participants in a $117.5-million equity funding deal, announced on Thursday, say the transaction will support African-focused Lekela Power meet its goal of constructing over 1 300 MW of wind and solar capacity across the continent by 2018, including four wind farms in South Africa. Lekela Power... 

$117.5m renewables deal to support 1 300 MW Africa roll-out
Mainstream CEO Eddie O’Connor

Denham, GreenWish ink renewable-energy partnership

By: Creamer Media Reporter      22nd June 2016 Global energy-focused private equity firm Denham Capital and renewable-energy investment company GreenWish Partners have entered into a strategic partnership to develop, build and finance a 600 MW renewable-energy portfolio across sub-Saharan Africa by 2020. The partnership would unlock the... 

Denham, GreenWish ink renewable-energy partnership

AFC, Harith merge power assets

By: Natasha Odendaal     22nd June 2016 Two Africa-based institutional investors have merged their power assets to create a new energy entity equipped with substantial capital, sector specific experience, a critical mass of existing assets and a pipeline of credible power projects. Harith General Partners and Africa Finance... 

Eskom denies Duvha irregularities, says contract to be awarded next week 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd June 2016 State-owned electricity utility Eskom reported on Wednesday that it would conclude a process for appointing a supplier for the replacement of the 600 MW Duvha Unit 3 next week, while strenuously denying procurement irregularities. Eskom said three suppliers were participating in the commercial... 

Eskom denies Duvha irregularities, says contract to be awarded next week

Eskom takes city to court over Wescape development

By: News24Wire      22nd June 2016 Eskom has slammed the decision of Anton Bredell, the provincial minister of local government, environmental affairs and development, and the Cape Town City Council to amend the urban edge to include land for the Wescape development on the west coast. The power utility has taken Bredell and the... 

Emperors Palace launches rooftop solar PV plant 

     22nd June 2016 Emperors Palace, in Boksburg, Gauteng is underway with construction of one of the largest rooftop solar photovoltaic plants in South Africa. Completion of the rooftop plant is set for August this year. Mia Breytenbach tells us more. 

Emperors Palace launches rooftop solar PV plant

Unilever head urges South African firms to prioritise society not just shareholders

By: Terence Creamer     21st June 2016 The global head of consumer goods group Unilever has urged South African companies to eschew short-termism and begin integrating the United Nations’ 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) into their operating models, describing their attainment as not only achievable, but also a high-return... 

Unilever head urges South African firms to prioritise society not just shareholders
Unilever CEO Paul Polman

South Africa seeks comment on draft carbon-offset rules

By: Terence Creamer     20th June 2016 Draft carbon offset regulations have been released by the National Treasury for public comment, with a submission deadline of July 29. Under the proposed rules, firms can reduce their carbon tax liability by between 5% and 10% of their total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, by investing in... 

South Africa seeks comment on draft carbon-offset rules

Power station fault and cable theft cause outages in Joburg

By: News24Wire      20th June 2016 A fault at a power station and cable theft resulted in power outages in two areas in and around Johannesburg on Monday, Eskom said. “Earlier today the Kelvin power station experienced a fault, which meant that it could not energise its supply areas in Johannesburg,” Eskom said in a statement. 

Eskom gets new hydro plant fully linked to grid

By: Reuters     20th June 2016 Eskom hailed a milestone in its efforts to overcome South Africa's chronic electricity shortages on Sunday, saying it had linked up the last of four units at its new Ingula hydro-electric power plant to the grid. "We look forward to Ingula rapidly nearing commercial completion and meeting the... 

Eskom gets new hydro plant fully linked to grid

Engenamic, Wits drive electrical energy agenda for Africa

By: Anine Kilian     17th June 2016 Sustainable access to energy is can help assist in the development of related infrastructure, as well as contributing to industrialisation and economic growth, project advisory company Engenamic CEO Ian Mckechnie said on Friday. Commenting on a capacity building programme – enableAFRICA – which... 

Engenamic, Wits drive electrical energy agenda for Africa

Illegal connections trip Eskom supply to parts of Jhb 

By: News24Wire      17th June 2016 Illegal connections overloaded the electricity grid causing power outages across parts of Johannesburg this week, Eskom said on Friday. Eskom said communities should “refrain from connecting themselves illegally, to use electricity sparingly and stop buying electricity from ghost vendors”. 

Illegal connections trip Eskom supply to parts of Jhb

Botswana to double Morupule power output by 2020

By: African News Agency      17th June 2016 The government of Botswana says power output from the Morupule Power Plant will be ramped up from the current 300 MW to 600 MW by 2020 through the addition of two new plants with a capacity to produce 300 MW each. Addressing the Botswana Resource Sector Conference (BRSC) held in Gaborone on... 

Pioneer Foods, Energy Partners in national solar programme

By: Mia Breytenbach     17th June 2016 Food and beverage manufacturer Pioneer Foods, in conjunction with energy solutions service provider Energy Partners’ solar division, has rolled out a solar programme, which is about 60% complete.      The programme entails the installation of large commercial solar systems with a combined size of... 

Pioneer Foods, Energy Partners in national solar programme
PROGRAMME ROLL-OUT As part of the solar programme Pioneer Food’s Klerksdorp Mill in the North West has a 752 kW rooftop installation

Zulu wants small business development integrated into nine-point plan

By: Mia Breytenbach     17th June 2016 While the South African Department of Small Business Development (DSBD) is one of the lead departments for one of the priority interventions of government’s Nine-Point Plan to boost economic growth and create much-needed jobs – unlocking the potential of small, medium-sized and microenterprises... 

Zulu wants small business development integrated into nine-point plan
Photo by Duane Daws
LINDIWE ZULU The Department of Small Business Development has set a target of increasing the . . . jobs created by the small business sector from 7.1-million to 9.2-million by 2019

Zimbabwe expects power supplies from Kariba expansion to start in Dec 2017

By: Reuters     15th June 2016 Zimbabwe, which endured power cuts almost daily last year, is on track to start generating additional power supplies at its Kariba hydro plant in December 2017, a senior government official said on Wednesday. Construction of two new generating units at the country's biggest power plant to add 300... 

French State to hold two thirds of new nuclear fuel group Areva

By: Reuters     15th June 2016 The French State plans to keep two thirds of the capital of a new nuclear fuel company that will be split off from nuclear group Areva and will invite strategic investors to buy a one third stake, Areva said on Wednesday. As part of a restructuring under which 87% State-owned Areva will sell its... 

French State to hold two thirds of new nuclear fuel group Areva

China firms to fund Congo hydropower plant to lift mining output

By: Reuters     14th June 2016 China's Sinohydro and China Railway Group will finance a $660-million hydroelectric plant in southeastern Democratic Republic of Congo which is being built to reduce the copper-mining region's power deficit. Congo is Africa's largest miner of copper and the 240 MW dam in the town of Busanga will... 

ET Energy establishes South African subsidiary

By: Anine Kilian     14th June 2016 Clean energy developer ET Energy has established a South African subsidiary ET Solutions South Africa, to provide engineering, procurement and construction (EPC), and operations and maintenance services for large-scale solar power plants. “ET Energy's new subsidiary in South Africa demonstrates... 

ET Energy establishes South African subsidiary

World Bank's Zambia solar auction sets African low price benchmark 

By: Reuters     14th June 2016 A World Bank-led solar power auction in Zambia has set a new low-cost benchmark for Africa, with two development groups winning backing to build generating plants in the next year, the international lender said on Monday. Neoen SAS, First Solar Inc and Enel Green Power were the winners of the... 

Ingula power station’s unit 4 goes into commercial operation

By: African News Agency      13th June 2016 The first unit – unit 4 – of the Ingula pumped-storage power station on the escarpment of the Little Drakensberg mountain range straddling the border of KwaZulu-Natal and the Free State has come into commercial operation, Eskom said on Sunday. Eskom’s group capital division handed over the unit... 

Ingula power station’s unit 4 goes into commercial operation

Eskom refutes allegations of ‘blindsiding’ Exxaro in the Arnot coal contract 

By: African News Agency      13th June 2016 Eskom on Sunday dismissed reports that it had “blindsided” Exxaro Resources in respect of the Arnot power station coal supply contract and threatened to take the matter to the Press Ombudsman. “Despite a sensationalist headline titled ‘How Eskom bailed out the Guptas’ the City Press newspaper... 

Eskom refutes allegations of ‘blindsiding’ Exxaro in the Arnot coal contract

Eskom outlines its position on coal contract to Gupta-linked firm 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      12th June 2016 In a seeming effort to preempt a City Press report raising questions about the award, by State-owned electricity utility Eskom, of a multimullion-rand coal contract to the Gupta-family-linked Tegata Exploration and Resources, in which President Jacob Zuma’s son, Duduzane, is a shareholder, Eskom... 

Eskom outlines its position on coal contract to Gupta-linked firm
Photo by Duane Daws
Eskom Chairperson Dr Ben Ngubane

Amcor substation explosion under investigation

By: Anine Kilian     10th June 2016 A fact-finding and information-gathering process is under way at Amcor substation in Meyerton, Gauteng, after a 20 MVA transformer exploded when it was switched back on after maintenance. The substation, which supplied silicone manganese producer Samancor, had since been shut down.   Within... 

Amcor substation explosion under investigation

Eltherm South Africa secures first major contract

By: Anine Kilian     10th June 2016 Heat tracing specialist eltherm South Africa (SA) has been awarded the contract to design and install a heat tracing system for the Xina Solar One power plant, near Pofadder, in the Northern Cape. The contract, awarded to eltherm SA by Spanish multinational corporation Abengoa, was the company’s... 

Eltherm South Africa secures first major contract

Draft regulations, if adopted, will boost biofuels investment

By: Dylan Slater     10th June 2016 Business intelligence provider Oxford Business Group (OBG) state that although solar and wind energy are the main focus for South Africa’s renewable-energy segment, Cabinet will discuss draft regulations on the biofuel industry later this year, thereby paving the way for the potential development... 

Free State poised to be helium pioneer as gas developments unfold 

By: Mia Breytenbach     10th June 2016 The discovery and proposed exploitation of a natural gas dome containing methane and some of the highest concentrations of helium in the world – South Africa’s first onshore gas find – in the Free State has created much excitement and visions of a local gas hub. “The Free State now has the... 

Free State poised to be helium pioneer as gas developments unfold

Eskom unveils new nuclear operator training programme with formal launch

By: Keith Campbell     9th June 2016 National electricity utility Eskom has announced that it started training some 100 recruits as nuclear operators on May 1. This Nuclear Project 100 initiative was formally launched on Thursday by Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown. The training is taking place at the Koeberg nuclear power... 

Eskom unveils new nuclear operator training programme with formal launch
Photo by Duane Daws
Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown

Saudi power firm ACWA eyes S African projects despite currency concerns

By: Reuters     9th June 2016 Saudi-based ACWA Power expects to win further business in South Africa this year as the power plant developer rides out concerns about the country's currency to tap into its need for more electricity, the firm's chief executive told Reuters. South Africa's economy has been hit hard by a... 

Saudi power firm ACWA eyes S African projects despite currency concerns

ABB inaugurates its first South African microgrid at Longmeadow headquarters

By: Mia Breytenbach     8th June 2016 Automation technology group ABB has commissioned an integrated solar-diesel microgrid installation – the group’s first microgrid in South Africa – at its 96 000 m2 Longmeadow facility in Johannesburg. The Longmeadow site hosts ABB’s head offices and logistics and manufacturing centre. 

ABB inaugurates its first South African microgrid at Longmeadow headquarters
ABB Longmeadow Headquarters
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