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Renewable Energy News

Eskom gearing up for big grid-scale battery storage roll-out 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd October 2018 State-owned electricity utility Eskom is preparing to roll-out battery energy storage systems (BESS) across multiple sites as part of a replacement plan for the 100 MW Kiwano concentrated solar power (CSP) project initially approved as part of the $3.75-billion World Bank loan extended to the... 

Congo sets deadline for plan on 11 000 MW hydropower plant

By: Bloomberg     22nd October 2018 The Democratic Republic of Congo gave two groups of investors a four-week deadline to submit a joint proposal on the development of the multibillion-dollar Inga 3 hydropower plant. The government signed an accord with Chinese and Spanish consortia this week to advance the 11 000 MW facility, the... 

Breytenbach welcomes greater certainty for renewable energy projects 

By: Kim Cloete     19th October 2018 Participants in the renewable energy sector say they are encouraged by the dedicated infrastructure team that will be set up in the Presidency, as it will give investors more certainty and confidence to back projects. “We’ve seen what the last two years of delays in the signing of renewable... 

Breytenbach welcomes greater certainty for renewable energy projects
Photo by Dylan Slater
IPP Office CEO Karen Breytenbach

Germany's Voith to supply more turbines for Ethiopia's Renaissance Dam

By: Reuters     18th October 2018 German mechanical engineering conglomerate Voith has signed an agreement to supply turbines for a $4-billion dam Ethiopia is building along the River Nile, state-affiliated media said on Wednesday. The 6 000 MW Grand Renaissance Dam is the centrepiece of the Horn of Africa country's bid to become... 

Renewable energy industry comments on draft IRP

By: Kim Cloete     17th October 2018 The renewable energy sector in South Africa has welcomed the draft Integrated Resource Plant (IRP) 2018, but has also expressed concerns. “While the IRP forecasting is rational in its choices, it unfortunately requires us to accept some overly optimistic assumptions,” said the South African... 

CSIR seeks municipal partners for energy master plan pilot project 

By: Terence Creamer     16th October 2018 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) aims to partner with a metropolitan council and a district municipality to compile pilot municipal energy master plans for electricity (MEMPs), which will provide the two councils with insight into the best electricity supply blends for... 

CSIR seeks municipal partners for energy master plan pilot project
CSIR Energy Centre head Dr Clinton Carter-Brown

Roman’s Pizza head office kitted out with solar PV plant

By: Marleny Arnoldi     15th October 2018 Fast food franchise Roman’s Pizza’s head office in Centurion, Gauteng, has installed a 137 kW grid-tied photovoltaic (PV) solar plant, which is one of several actions the company is implementing to help conserve the environment. Other green initiatives by Roman’s include eliminating plastic... 

Renewable energy sector could provide jobs boost to SA

By: African News Agency      15th October 2018 The renewable energy sector could provide an unexpected but much-needed jobs boost to South Africa’s employment levels, as the sector continues to mature, solar enery company SOLA Future Energy said on Monday. SOLA Future Energy is the company that replaced Robben Island’s diesel-powered... 

South Africa’s synfuels know-how could give it edge as world mulls power fuels 

By: Terence Creamer     15th October 2018 The newly formed Global Alliance Power Fuels believes that South Africa is well positioned to become a leading site for the large-scale production of liquid fuels from renewable energy and has confirmed with Engineering News Online that the country is on its radar for possible future... 

South Africa’s synfuels know-how could give it edge as world mulls power fuels
Photo by Creamer Media
Transmission lines with Sasol's Secunda complex in the background, where synthetic fuels and chemicals are produced from coal

KenGen says new geothermal plant nearly ready

By: Reuters     12th October 2018 KenGen's new 165.4 MW capacity plant powered by geothermal steam is three quarters complete and on schedule for commissioning next July, Kenya's main electricity producer said on Friday. Geothermal steam, hot underground steam found in the Rift Valley which is used to drive turbines for... 

Wind body to request smoothing of procurement profile in IRP submission

By: Terence Creamer     11th October 2018 The South African Wind Energy Association (SAWEA) will appeal for a “smooth rolling procurement” of new wind-energy capacity in its response to the draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP 2018) so as to close a three-year procurement gap in the current document. The Draft IRP 2018 was released on... 

Wind body to request smoothing of procurement profile in IRP submission
The Nojoli wind farm

Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine 

11th October 2018 A South African inventor has developed a new flexible wing, which he believes could have application in everything from wind energy and sailing to aviation and motoring. 

Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine
Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine

Govt urged to include IRP adjustment that steers renewables jobs the way of coal regions 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      10th October 2018 South Africa should consider including a policy adjustment in its upcoming Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) directing developers of new renewable-energy infrastructure to build projects in regions currently geared towards coal mining and coal-fired electricity production. University of Johannesburg... 

Govt urged to include IRP adjustment that steers renewables jobs the way of coal regions
Photo by Creamer Media
Dr Tobias Bischof-Niemz

Technology cost assumptions used to produce IRP explained 

By: Terence Creamer     9th October 2018 An experienced electricity system modeller has corrected a suggestion that the draft 2018 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP 2018) uses levelised cost assumptions for the various generation technologies tested, explaining that overnight capital cost assumptions for each technology are key inputs. The... 

Technology cost assumptions used to produce IRP explained

Climate crisis spurs UN call for $2.4tn fossil fuel shift  

By: Bloomberg     8th October 2018 The world must invest $2.4-trillion in clean energy every year through 2035 and cut the use of coal-fired power to almost nothing by 2050 to avoid catastrophic damage from climate change, according to scientists convened by the United Nations. Their report published Monday adds pressure on... 

Technologies listed in IRP may be used as ‘proxies’ for equivalent solutions

By: Terence Creamer     5th October 2018 The Department of Energy (DoE) may consider using the generation technologies listed in the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) as “proxies” for other technologies that are able to deliver an equivalent solution to the power system at the same cost. Speaking at a stakeholder workshop hosted by the... 

Technologies listed in IRP may be used as ‘proxies’ for equivalent solutions
Department of Energy chief director Jacob Mbele

Kenya on course to develop nuclear energy, official says

By: Reuters     5th October 2018 Kenya's ambition of having a nuclear power plant is still on course and it hopes to build its first such facility in the next 12 to 15 years, a senior Energy Ministry official said on Friday. Joseph Njoroge, principal secretary for electricity, told Reuters the East African nation plans to turn... 

South Africa’s changing energy mix requires more investment

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     5th October 2018 Given the difficulties and challenges facing the energy generation model in South Africa, there is much scope for foreign direct investment into the country’s energy sector. This one of the ideas unpacked by various panelists at an energy sector-focused discussion held at the South African–French... 

LHDA holds workshops on Lesotho Highlands Water Project Phase 2

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd October 2018 The Lesotho Highlands Development Authority (LHDA) has started a series of workshops with registered construction companies in Gauteng and Free State to explain the procurement framework of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP) Phase 2 and to share lessons learned from previous tender... 

Kibo, Sepco III extend due diligence deadline to end-November

By: Marleny Arnoldi     1st October 2018 Aim- and JSE-listed Kibo Energy on Monday announced that the due date by which potential equity investor Sepco III had to complete its internal investment process had been extended to November 30. This had initially been expected to be completed by September 30.  

Mall of Africa to debut world first in integrated solar system

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     27th September 2018 Mall of Africa is set to unveil a world first in integrated renewable energy systems, with the largest rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) system of its kind in the southern hemisphere and tenth worldwide. The 4 755 kW installation covers most of the available mall roof space, an area of about 45 000... 

Mall of Africa to debut world first in integrated solar system
Mall of Africa's rooftop solar photovoltaic system

ABB digital technology to help enhance Egypt’s power grid

By: Simone Liedtke     26th September 2018 Multinational automation company ABB has been selected by the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company (EETC) to help upgrade and digitalise the electrical grid in the Port Said region, located along Egypt’s Mediterranean coast. The area includes the landmark Suez Canal. 

Total to roll out solar-powered service stations in Kruger National Park

By: Marleny Arnoldi     26th September 2018 Total South Africa (Total SA) on Wednesday revealed a demonstration model of its solar-powered service station at the Skukuza camp, in the Kruger National Park, in Mpumalanga, on the occasion of celebrating a 60-year partnership with South African National Parks (SANParks). The demonstration... 

Total to roll out solar-powered service stations in Kruger National Park

Three UCT lecturers participate in international Solar Decathlon competition

By: Simone Liedtke     26th September 2018 Thee lecturers from the University of Cape Town (UCT) are part of Team Mahali, the only team representing sub-Saharan Africa in the international Solar Decathlon competition, which will be held in Morocco next year. The Solar Decathlon is an international competition to design and build a fully... 

Link Solar launches portable solar panels suitable for outdoor, marine use

By: Simone Liedtke     26th September 2018 There is a lack of portable solar panels in the market, says specialised solar product manufacturer Link Solar, which has released of its own portable solar panel range for outdoor use and marine grade level use. These solar panels, the company explained, are specifically created to serve as an... 

Wind body seeks right to contest Nersa report on delayed renewables projects

By: Creamer Media Reporter      25th September 2018 The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) Tribunal has invited the South African Wind Energy Association (SAWEA) to present its case this week as to why the tribunal should hear the association’s arguments in opposition to a 2017 Nersa panel report. The document in question concluded... 

Wind body seeks right to contest Nersa report on delayed renewables projects

New Eskom strategy to include pan-African expansion roadmap

By: Terence Creamer     25th September 2018 State-owned electricity utility Eskom has confirmed that its new strategy, which will involve far-reaching changes to its business model, will seek to position the company for opportunities arising in the rest of Africa. “Growth opportunities for Eskom are not restricted to South Africa. To grow... 

New Eskom strategy to include pan-African expansion roadmap

Global Energy Talent Index 2019 survey closes soon

20th September 2018 The third annual Global Energy Talent Index (GETI) survey is underway and open for responses. The survey is an industry-leading workforce project led by top energy recruitment firm, Airswift, and Energy Jobline, the world’s largest energy job site. The survey results will explore the opinions of... 

DST bolsters biomass industry with new consortium

By: Marleny Arnoldi     20th September 2018 The Department of Science and Technology (DST) has established a biorefinery research consortium (BRC) to create new value chains from waste biomass. The consortium is a partnership between the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), the Tshwane University of Technology, the... 

Perdekraal East wind farm preparing for construction activity to start

By: Simone Liedtke     17th September 2018 The Perdekraal East wind farm, which is situated within the Witzenberg local municipality, in the Western Cape, is preparing for the start of major construction activity. Once complete, the 110 MW Perdekraal wind farm, which spans 3 055 ha, will comprise 48, 115-m-high wind turbines. 

Perdekraal East wind farm preparing for construction activity to start

PIC foresees great opportunity in investing in early stage tech-driven companies

By: Kim Cloete     14th September 2018 The Public Investment Corporation (PIC) has outlined its vision for its recently launched R2-billion fund aimed at early-stage tech-driven companies. PIC executive head of research Sholto Dolamo told a Frost & Sullivan CEO Think Tank, in Cape Town, that the PIC was venturing beyond its... 

South Africa’s nuclear industry disappointed with the new IRP

By: Rebecca Campbell     14th September 2018 The Nuclear Industry Association of South Africa is not happy at the exclusion of further nuclear power (over and above that already provided by the existing Koeberg nuclear power plant) from the Government’s recently released Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) 2018-2030. Although he described the... 

Renewable-energy guide offers insight into maturing African markets

By: Schalk Burger     14th September 2018 Global law firm DLA Piper has characterised the regulatory environments for renewable-energy projects in 12 African countries in response to developing markets on the continent, says DLA Piper Global co-chair of energy sector Natasha Luther-Jones. Renewable energy projects are becoming... 

Renewable-energy guide offers insight into  maturing African markets
NATASHA LUTHER-JONES Facilitating the development and growth of the energy industry will help to create a virtuous cycle of energy-linked development

Nordex to supply 80 wind turbines to two South African wind farm projects

By: Marleny Arnoldi     12th September 2018 Wind turbine manufacturer Nordex Group has been awarded contracts in South Africa to install 80 AW125/3150 turbines for the Garob and Copperton projects, in the Northern Cape. The turbines have a combined capacity of 252 MW.  

Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine  

By: Terence Creamer     11th September 2018 A South African start-up has developed a vertical-axis wind-turbine that employs a groundbreaking morphing wing design, which seeks to mimic the movements of the Cape vulture. A prototype of the turbine, developed by Brayfoil Technologies in collaboration with WorleyParsons, is currently being... 

Cape vulture provides inspiration for homegrown vertical-axis wind turbine
Brayfoil Technologies founder Robert Bray on how he drew inspiration from the Cape Vulture for his innovative flexible wing invention, which he says could have application in wind turbines, hydro turbines, sail yachts, aeroplanes and automobiles. Video and video editing: Darlene Creamer

Shift to renewables to become a growing trend in the mining sector

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     10th September 2018 Owing to a reduction in renewable energy costs, the prospect of a more reliable power supply and an increasingly favourable regulatory environment in key mining markets, renewable energy is anticipated to play an increasingly important role in powering mining operations worldwide over the coming... 

Hydrogen from renewables may be energy transition’s ‘missing link’

By: Terence Creamer     7th September 2018 Producing hydrogen from variable renewable electricity (VRE) could be the ‘missing link’ in the unfolding transition to a decarbonised global energy system, a newly released report argues. Published by the International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena), the study explores the production of... 

Hydrogen from renewables may be energy transition’s ‘missing link’
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