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Mine improves output as copper price slated to rise

By: Donald Makhafola     8th December 2017 In the medium to long term, the fundamental outlook for copper is among the strongest of all metals, says diversified natural resources producer Eurasian Resources Group (ERC), which has copper assets in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). “The lack of major copper plants due on stream,... 

Phase angles

By: Terry Mackenzie-hoy     8th December 2017 I was in a courtroom the other day and the public prosecutor was asking questions . Unfortunately they were not engineering questions and I am an engineer. Thus, I did not understand the questions or why they were being asked. As a true engineer, I would say, "Ah, if you mean . . .", and I would... 

Marine Corps Air Station energy security microgrid, US

By: Sheila Barradas     8th December 2017 The US Marine Corps and Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southwest is building a new diesel and natural gas plant, as well as refurbishing an existing building into an advanced energy and water operations centre. 

Grid operators turning to batteries as costs fall and need for flexibility rises

By: Terence Creamer     28th November 2017 The standalone cost of battery energy storage remains above South Africa’s prevailing, albeit rising, electricity tariffs, but could already be commercially viable in some instances when the “stacked benefits” of the technology are taken into account. A levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) study... 

Microgrids add new arrow to Africa’s electricity access quiver

By: Mia Breytenbach     24th November 2017 The launch of a R25-million solar energy, lithium-ion battery storage microgrid on Robben Island – the World Heritage Site in Table Bay, Cape Town, which, until recently, relied on diesel to generate electricity – not only showcases the versatile advantages of microgrid technology, but also... 

Eskom continues to implement IPP procurement programme

     24th November 2017 The Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme REIPPPP) has its foundation in the Integrated Resource Plan 2010 (IRP 2010), which was promulgated in March 2011. The IRP identifies the preferred technology to ensure the sustainability of South Africa's electricity system,... 

Microgrids add new arrow to Africa’s electricity access quiver

By: Mia Breytenbach     24th November 2017 The launch of a R25-million solar energy, lithium-ion battery storage microgrid on Robben Island – the World Heritage Site in Table Bay, Cape Town, which, until recently, relied on diesel to generate electricity – not only showcases the versatile advantages of microgrid technology, but also... 

Sasol’s new strategy shuns GTL as specialty chemicals emerge as key growth driver

By: Terence Creamer     23rd November 2017 Chemicals and energy group Sasol is preparing to sell several assets, including its Canadian shale gas assets, following an overhaul of its corporate strategy, which eschews any further greenfield gas-to-liquids (GTL) investments in favour of smaller acquisitions and projects of between... 

Eskom’s ‘death spiral’ under the microscope 

By: Terence Creamer     21st November 2017 A major topic of discussion during recent public hearings into Eskom’s 2018/19 revenue application, was whether a further double-digit tariff hike could trigger a “utility death spiral”, whereby rising tariffs and utility costs spark an exodus of energy-intensive customers from the network,... 

A little nuke never hurt nobody

By: Terry Mackenzie-hoy     17th November 2017 I recently told a group of people at a pub (a pub, can you believe?) that I thought Donald Trump was a "good idea".  There was the sort of silence that you get when the stage magician vanishes completely and then the sort of shouting that follows when Sandra Bullock asks who would like to go with... 

We have a demand problem, Minister 

By: Terence Creamer     17th November 2017 National Energy Regulator of South Africa and Eskom executives will naturally be relieved that hearings into the State-owned utility’s revenue application for 2018/19 have drawn to an end. However, it is somewhat of a pity that Energy Minister David Mahlobo did not have an opportunity to attend.... 

IEA lists South Africa as possible hub for production of ‘green’ hydrogen-rich chemicals, fuels

By: Terence Creamer     14th November 2017 A new International Energy Agency (IEA) report lists South Africa, together with a handful of other territories, as having the potential to tap its abundant solar and wind resources to produce “green” hydrogen-rich chemicals and fuels, such as ammonia and methanol. The insight paper, titled... 

Organisation assists business in becoming energy efficient

By: Nica Schreuder     10th November 2017 Lack of energy supply security, economic costs associated with energy, and environmental costs, such as depleting resources, contributing to climate change are just some of the factors that can be mitigated if South Africa embraces energy efficiency and reliable renewable energy alternatives,... 

Khobab and Loeriesfontein wind farm projects, South Africa

By: Sheila Barradas     3rd November 2017 The wind farms have been connected to State-owned power utility Eskom’s grid. 

Report outlines vision for a million South African ‘climate jobs’

By: Terence Creamer     2nd November 2017 A new report has been released in an effort to mobilise South Africans behind the vision of creating a million ‘climate jobs’ as part of the country’s response to the threat posed by climate change. Published by the Alternative Information and Development Centre, the 60-page report has been... 

Wind training facility increases course offering

By: Nadine James     27th October 2017 Accredited wind energy training facility the South African Renewable Energy Technology Centre (SARETEC) has become a Global Wind Organisation- (GWO-) certified training facility, and can now offer the GWO Basic Safety Training (BST) and Basic Technical Training (BTT) qualifications to wind... 

Wind energy sector still attractive to investors

By: Nadine James     27th October 2017 Shorter fabrication time, lower costs for parts, and increased repeatability and uniformity have led to impressive improvements in the wind energy sector, says multidisciplinary engineering consultancy WSP Africa power director Dinesh Buldoo. “For instance, there is significant focus on advanced... 

Loeriesfontein Wind Farm connected to grid

     27th October 2017 Loeriesfontein Wind Farm as well as Khobab Wind Farm, both located in the Northern Cape, are now connected to State-owned power utility Eskom’s grid, through Eskom’s Helios substation and the commissioning of wind turbines has started. “We energised the wind farm substations with Eskom... 

Solar PV beats other forms of power in 2016

By: Bloomberg     20th October 2017 Solar power grew faster than any other source of fuel for the first time in 2016, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in a report suggesting the technology will dominate renewables in the years ahead. The institution established after the first major oil crisis in 1973 said 165 gigawatts... 

Solar power projects, Egypt

By: Sheila Barradas     20th October 2017 The Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company hopes to increase Egypt’s power generation capacity through the construction of 11 greenfield solar power plants. 

Eskom’s new R174bn grid plan includes R18bn for IPP connections

By: Terence Creamer     19th October 2017 State-owned electricity utility Eskom says all connection costs relating to 27 outstanding renewable-energy projects have been included in its latest Transmission Development Plan (TDP), which covers the ten-year period from 2018 to 2027. The renewable-energy projects were legally procured in... 

‘Absolutely no need' for nuclear, Dames says in State-capture testimony

By: Kim Cloete     18th October 2017 Former Eskom CEO Brian Dames has revealed that he faced a breakdown in communication between the board and management, as well as death threats during his time at the state utility.  He has also told Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Public Enterprises that there is "absolutely no need" for... 

Young HDSA diamond beneficiators doing well – De Beers 

By: Martin Creamer     17th October 2017 The model launched last year by De Beers for the development of young historically disadvantaged South Africans (HDSAs) as diamond beneficiators is proving highly successful, De Beers Senior VP Sightholder Sales South Africa Mpumi Zikalala said on Tuesday. Speaking to Mining Weekly Online on the... 

Malmström raises EU’s concern over South Africa's stance towards renewables IPPs

By: Terence Creamer     17th October 2017 European Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström confirmed on Tuesday that she had communicated the European Union’s (EU’s) unhappiness over Eskom’s refusal to enter into contracts with renewable-energy independent power producers (IPPs), some of which are European, directly with the South... 

Building Energy celebrates start of production at Uganda solar PV plant

By: Anine Kilian     16th October 2017 Independent power producer Building Energy recently inaugurated the 10 MW Tororo solar plant – its first photovoltaic (PV) system in Uganda and one of the largest solar PV plants in Eastern Africa. Building Energy was responsible for the development of the project, arranging the financing, as... 

Identifying New Energy Markets In Africa

     16th October 2017 The population in Africa is growing with an expected 6% annual increase in demand for electricity, but the deficit in access to energy in Africa is a severe constraint to growth, development and productivity - on a scale that restricts Africa’s ability to compete effectively in the global... 

SA weighs market opportunities as utility-scale battery storage prospects improve

By: Mia Breytenbach     13th October 2017 Following the release of an energy storage technoeconomic study, ‘The South Africa Energy Storage Technology and Market Assessment’, advocating that South Africa requires market preparation to take advantage of growth opportunities in the stationary and mobility value chains of energy storage,... 

Italian manufacturer remains committed to quality

By: Robyn Wilkinson     13th October 2017 Despite growing competition in the South African geyser market and the generally depressed economic state of the country, global thermic comfort solutions provider Ariston Thermo Group has continued to achieve constant growth in the local market because of its high-quality products, says Ariston... 

Pan-European bank celebrates 45 years in SA

By: Robyn Wilkinson     13th October 2017 Pan-European banking and financial services provider UniCredit will celebrate 45 years of successful service in South Africa this year, having provided support for European companies entering African markets from its Johannesburg-based representative office since 1972. 

SA weighs market opportunities as utility-scale battery storage prospects improve

By: Mia Breytenbach     13th October 2017 Following the release of an energy storage techno-economic study ‘The South Africa Energy Storage Technology and Market Assessment’, advocating that South Africa requires market preparation to take advantage of growth opportunities in the stationary and mobility value chains of energy storage,... 

Hybrid solar systems punted as the way forward for sub-Saharan Africa mines

By: Dylan Slater     13th October 2017 Factors such as limited and unreliable energy transmission and distribution grids, across many countries in sub-Saharan Africa, have created a dependency among large industrial and mining houses on diesel and heavy fuel oil (HFO) to provide a reliable energy supply, says renewable-energy... 

Thunder Ranch Wind Farm project, US

By: Sheila Barradas     13th October 2017 Enel Green Power North America has signed a tax equity agreement for the project. 

Infrastructure report card points to importance of efficient maintenance

By: Anine Kilian     13th October 2017 A lack of skilled professionals and maintenance has emerged as among the major issues facing most of South Africa’s infrastructure sectors, according to the South African Institution of Civil Engineering’s (Saice’s) third Infrastructure Report Card (IRC) for South Africa. “Efficient maintenance... 

Electricity industry facing prospect of ‘forced restructuring’

By: Terence Creamer     13th October 2017 Johannesburg’s electricity utility City Power is warning that the current structure of South Africa’s electricity sector is unsustainable and that, in the absence of a coherent national policy, the sector is approaching “breaking point”. Demand- and supply-side manager Paul Vermeulen says that... 

Chamber helps Italian companies prosper in S Africa

By: Robyn Wilkinson     13th October 2017 Networking events and exhibitions are integral to fostering partnerships between Italian and South African companies, says Italian-South African Chamber of Trade and Industries secretary general Mariagrazia Biancospino. 

Lindahl wind farm project, US

By: Sheila Barradas     13th October 2017 EGPNA Renewable Energy Partners plan to build a 150 MW capacity wind farm in North Dakota. 

Qld releases more exploration acreage

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     11th October 2017 The Queensland government will release more than 19 000 km2 of land for gas exploration as part of its annual exploration programme, Natural Resources and Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham said on Wednesday. The gas generated from these exploration tenements will be used to power local... 

Adani signs PPA over Rugby Run solar plant

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     10th October 2017 Indian major Adani has signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) over its planned Rugby Run solar plant, in Queensland. The 65 MW first stage of the solar plant is expected to cost more than A$100-million to complete, and will be built on a 600-ha block that is part of the Rugby Run grazing property. 

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