Every Friday, SAfm’s radio anchor Sakina Kamwendo speaks to Martin Creamer, publishing editor of Engineering News & Mining Weekly. Reported here is this Friday’s At the Coalface transcript:
Kamwendo: A new South African diamond mine is expected to be developed in Limpopo province.
Creamer: Yes, you would imagine that a company with a name of Botswana Diamonds would be drilling in Botswana, but they came across the border and they found diamonds in South Africa. This looks like it's going to be a diamond mine at Thorny River, in Limpopo. They have already discovered some very high quality diamonds and good coloured diamonds. They have been drilling further and they find kimberlite indicators like they're going out of fashion. So, it seems as though we will have a new diamond mine in Limpopo.
Kamwendo: Wimbledon has opted for platinum to mark the Queen’s jubilee and the centenary its centre court.
Creamer: We want to flatten 'em with South African platinum. They have decided that the toss coin that they use to decide who's going to serve at upcoming Wimbledon tennis tournaments will be a platinum coin. They are going to spin a platinum coin and that platinum is very likely to have come from South Africa. It will be representing two things. The one is that it is the Queen's Platinum Jubilee, so it will be 70 grams of platinum representing the 70 years of service of Queen Elizabeth. It also coincides with the centenary of the centre court. You will see on July 9th and July 10th, they will spin that platinum coin for the ladies' finals and the men's finals.
Kamwendo: Greater hydrogen fuel cell adoption is poised to boost South Africa’s platinum group metals sector.
Creamer: Exactly that. We need to actually promote this fuel cell technology, which uses our platinum. You see governments around the world promoting battery electric vehicles, which do not use platinum at this stage but may do so in the future as intense research is under way. At the same time, we South Africans need to promote the fuel cell electric vehicles. We are starting to do it here at the heavy level. We can see that a transport corridor is planned from Limpopo coming through Gauteng to KwaZulu-Natal, where there will be refuelling stations, where big fuel cell electric vehicles will be able to refuel with green hydrogen, which platinum group metals also helps to make. When it is green hydrogen that comes from the sun and it comes from the wind and it is clean. This is the ideal thing to have when you are making sure that you mitigate against climate change. So they are saying promote fuel cell electric vehicles that use this green hydrogen. Let governments have policies for fuel cells, because it is no good plugging a battery electric vehicle into an electrical system that is fossil-fuel fired. This would mean charging your car with dirty energy. How will that mitigate against climate change? The idea is to really do this the correct way and to go into the fuel cells to get into the green hydrogen, because that green hydrogen goes into many industries, including the steel industry, the cement industry, the heavy vehicle industry, shipping, busing, railing, tramming – almost everything. We need to really make sure that fuel cells get on the policy documents of governments around the world.
Kamwendo: Thanks very much. Martin Creamer is publishing editor of Engineering News & Mining Weekly.