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Centre developing clean tech SMEs to support low-carbon transition

By: Schalk Burger     26th August 2016 The Climate Innovation Centre South Africa (CICSA) of The Innovation Hub plans to increase the number of clean technology small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to support the transition of government and industry to a less carbon-intense economy, says CICSA innovation specialist Nhlakanipho... 

South Africa won’t change IPP course ‘midstream’ 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd August 2016 Cabinet appears to have put paid to Eskom efforts to halt the country’s highly regarded independent power producer (IPP) programme, with Minister in The Presidency for Performance Monitoring and Evaluation Jeff Radebe indicating on Monday that there was no intention to “change course midstream”.... 

Anaergia takes over as manager of SA’s first commercial biogas plant

By: Irma Venter     19th August 2016  The day-to-day management of South Africa’s first commercial biogas plant have shifted to biogas expert Anaergia Africa, part of the Anaergia international group of companies, as from July. Anaergia Africa will manage the plant in a two-year contract. 

Consulting firm warns of ‘vicious cycle of defection’ from Eskom, municipalities

By: Mia Breytenbach     19th August 2016 The rapid decline in renewables pricing, large-scale battery production and new technologies reducing the price of storage, which will make renewables feasible on a larger scale within 15 years is putting State-owned power utility Eskom at risk of losing electricity demand to the... 

New Schneider Electric variable-speed drives improve efficiency, security

By: Schalk Burger     19th August 2016 The research and development (R&D) of the latest generation of industrial equipment manufacturer Schneider Electric’s Altivar process variable-speed drives (VSDs) focused on smooth performance and efficiency, cybersecurity and connectivity to support automated industrial systems, says Schneider... 

Packaging manufacturer joins renewable-energy campaign

     19th August 2016 Food processing and packaging solutions provider Tetra Pak has joined the RE100 renewable-energy campaign, committing to increase its use of renewable electricity from 20% today, to 100% across all global operations by 2030. The announcement was made at the Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) forum​... 

Exxaro eyes more renewables

By: Natasha Odendaal     18th August 2016 Following the success of its entry into renewable energy through a 50% wind farm joint venture (JV) with Tata Power, diversified miner Exxaro Resources is exploring further opportunities in clean energy. Independent power producer (IPP) Cennergi had marked its first income generation following... 

IPP programme beneficial for South Africa

By: Anine Kilian     17th August 2016 Given the environmental and economic benefits of South Africa’s independent power producer (IPP) programme, its continuation and growth will best serve South Africa’s energy needs, says energy solutions provider Energy Partners head of business development Andre Agenbag. Commenting on State-owned... 

Cairo Solar Farm project, Egypt

By: Sheila Barradas     12th August 2016 The project is part of the first regulatory round of the Egypt's Feed-in Tariff programme, which aims to procure 4 300 MW of renewable-energy capacity. 

Hybrid power generation system wins energy award

By: Mia Breytenbach     12th August 2016 The Hybrid Power Generation System (HPGS) of national security alliance North Atlantic Treaty Organisation’s (Nato’s) Energy Security Center of Excellence has won one of the Energy Transition Trophies 2016. The awards, held in Paris, France, in June, covered such themes, as factories, energy,... 

Bio2Watt appoints Anaergia to manage biogas plant, looks to expand

By: Irma Venter     10th August 2016 The day-to-day management of South Africa’s first commercial biogas plant have shifted to biogas expert Anaergia Africa, part of the Anaergia international group of companies, as from July. Anaergia Africa will manage the plant in a two-year contract. 

Amakhala Emoyeni wind energy facility, South Africa

By: Mariaan Webb     5th August 2016 The project has achieved commercial operation. 

BMW Group plant, Mexico

By: Sheila Barradas     5th August 2016 The plant will manufacture the new BMW 3 series sedan. 

Trouble in paradise

By: Terry Mackenzie-hoy     5th August 2016 From the ESI Journal's July 22 edition: “South African State-owned power utility Eskom has said that it will not sign any power purchase agreements with private power producers once round 4.5 of government’s renewable power programme draws to a close.” Eskom CEO Brian Molefe is reported as... 

Kenya exhibition places focus on renewable energy

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     2nd August 2016 With investment in the offgrid solar sector reaching $276-million last year – a 15-fold increase over 2012 – the third International Off-grid Renewable Energy Conference and Exhibition (Iorec), which will be held in Nairobi, Kenya, from September 30 to October 1, will aim to further improve... 

Will the recovery in Eskom’s plant availability be sustained? 

By: Terence Creamer     2nd August 2016 In its most recent presentations on the performance of its power stations, Eskom has pointed to improvements in the energy availability factor (EAF) from its coal-fired power stations over the past few months as evidence of a solid operational turnaround. The State-owned utility shows, for... 

Joemat-Pettersson backs renewables; promises coal, expedited renewable-energy IPP decision soon

By: Natasha Odendaal     29th July 2016 With government preparing to announce its long-awaited decision on the expedited round of  the Renewable-Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) and the Coal Baseload Independent Power Producer Procurement  Programme (CBIPPPP), Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson has... 

Agency supports waste-to-energy project in SA

     29th July 2016 The US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has awarded a grant to South African renewable energy project developer MBHE African Power to support a waste-to-energy project in the Drakenstein municipality, in the Western Cape. 

Concentrated solar plants valuable for South Africa 

By: Robyn Wilkinson     29th July 2016 As baseload plants, concentrated solar plants (CSPs) are highly sought after in the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP), says infrastructure operations and maintenance (O&M) company Investing in Africa Holdings (IIAH) director Gabriel Reeder. 

Power builds to continue despite decreased demand across industries

By: Robyn Wilkinson     29th July 2016 Despite a decrease in demand for energy from the mining and related industries, construction, engineering and mining contractor Murray & Roberts Power & Water platform CEO Steve Harrison believes that the power station builds at Medupi, in Limpopo, and Kusile, in Mpumalanga, will continue to... 

S Africa renewables sector growing well

By: Robyn Wilkinson     29th July 2016 Engineering firm Arup associate director Mariaan Woest believes that the renewables sector is growing well in South Africa, with Arup selected as a consultant on many of the projects approved in the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP). 

Rockefeller foundation backs African renewables platform

By: Terence Creamer     28th July 2016 Private grantmaking foundation the Rockefeller Brothers Fund is participating in a $117.5-million investment in the Lekela Power Platform, which aims to build over 1.3 GW of wind and solar plants in Africa by 2018. The fund, created in 1940 by the sons of US oil industry pioneer John D... 

Mining companies relying more on renewable energy

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     27th July 2016 Mining companies are increasingly looking to renewable energy to meet their power needs, as the subdued mineral price environment is incentivising firms to reduce reliance on more expensive diesel or distant, unreliable electricity grid systems, states research firm BMI Research. In its outlook... 

Richards Bay IDZ poised for investment, jobs boost

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     25th July 2016 The Richards Bay Industrial Development Zone (RBIDZ) on Monday opened its R16-million Phase 1A Customs Control Gate Complex. This was followed by a sod-turning event for the zone’s Techno Hub. 

Eskom’s IPP stance seen undermining investment and green industrialisation 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd July 2016 The decision by Eskom not to sign any new power purchase agreements (PPAs) with independent power producers (IPPs) beyond those selected in the latest competitive bidding round could have a “chilling” effect on investment and undermine industrialisation efforts under way in the green economy,... 

Africa’s brightest youth brainstorm solutions to socioeconomic challenges 

By: David Oliveira     22nd July 2016 One hundred of Africa’s most innovative youth gathered at the Brightest Young Minds (BYM) 2016 summit, held in Johannesburg last month, to discuss and find innovative solutions for Africa’s socioeconomic challenges. “BYM is a nonprofit public-benefit organisation aimed at providing a platform for... 

Siemens upbeat about South Africa’s gas-to-power, renewables potential

By: Anine Kilian     21st July 2016 Global engineering firm Siemens says it is committed to South Africa’s renewable-energy revolution and supports the country’s imminent procurement of gas-to-power infrastructure.  Speaking to Engineering News Online on the sidelines of the Power-Gen Africa conference in Sandton, Johannesburg,... 

IDC, AFD sign €60m credit agreement for green projects

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     20th July 2016 South Africa’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has signed an agreement with France's development agency, Agence Française de Développement (AFD), for a €60-million credit line aimed at local small-scale green projects. The facility, a collaboration under the Sustainable Use of Natural... 

Recent events show need for 'nuclear rethink' – professor 

By: Natasha Odendaal     19th July 2016 South Africa needs to tread carefully if it is to pursue its nuclear build plans, particularly in light of recent events that require a “nuclear rethink”, suggests University of Johannesburg Department of Physics head Hartmut Winkler. Over the past five years, the dynamics of the nuclear... 

$150m Brics bank facility seen helping ease South Africa’s grid bottlenecks

By: Terence Creamer     19th July 2016 State-owned electricity producer Eskom expects to finalise commercial terms with the New Development Bank (NDB), of the Brics grouping, for a $150-million facility in the next quarter, CFO Anoj Singh reports. A term sheet has been signed with the NDB and Singh reports that, once consummated, the... 

Paris Agreement consensus opens business opportunities  

By: Natasha Odendaal     19th July 2016 A significant opportunity has emerged as a result of the consensus reached in Paris at the twenty-first Conference of the Parties (COP 21) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change at the end of last year and the world is now at an inflection point in the transition to cleaner... 

Group of 30-somethings making steady progress in building black-owned IPP 

By: Terence Creamer     18th July 2016 The Pele Energy Group (PEG), which is owned and managed by a group of 30-something black professionals, is making strides in its stated objective of evolving from an energy investor into a fully-fledged independent power producer (IPP) and, ultimately, a private utility company. Headquartered in... 

Company commercialises thermoplastic material with low friction coefficiency

     15th July 2016 In May, plastic fabrication and engineering company Vesconite Bearings  started to commercialise its Superlube, a thermoplastic bearing material with one of the lowest coefficients of friction of any polymer available. The development of Superlube – conducted at the company’s laboratory in... 

Energy company signs 20-year power purchase agreement

     15th July 2016 Wind energy developments project management company Kipeto Energy, is one step closer to delivering additional clean energy to the people of Kenya following an announcement that it formally signed a 20-year power purchase agreement with Kenya Power last month. 

Noupoort Wind Farm project, South Africa

By: Sheila Barradas     15th July 2016 The Noupoort Wind Farm entered commercial operation on July 11. 

ABB inaugurates its first South African microgrid at Longmeadow headquarters 

     14th July 2016 Automation technology group ABB has commissioned an integrated solar-diesel microgrid installation at its 96 000 m2 Longmeadow facility in Johannesburg. This is the group’s first microgrid in South Africa. Mia Breytenbach tells us more.  

South Africa should consider onshore LNG regasification, Fluor argues 

By: Terence Creamer     12th July 2016 Global engineering and construction group Fluor argues that South Africa could consider both onshore and offshore storage and regasification options for the importation of liquefied natural gas (LNG), however it believes that onshore facilities could offer a number of advantages. The South... 

Black & Veatch eyeing South Africa’s gas-to-power opportunity

By: Terence Creamer     12th July 2016 Despite falling electricity demand in South Africa, global engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) group Black & Veatch remains optimistic about prospects for the country’s power market, as well as energy prospects across Africa, where increased attention is being given to addressing the... 

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