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Audio Articles

Digital transformation of manufacturing expected to improve efficiencies 

By: Schalk Burger     29th June 2022 The transformation of manufacturing processes and operations into connected, integrated, automated and smart operations, collectively known as Industry 4.0, will reduce the amount of low skilled positions but also create new skilled positions, assurance and advisory services multinational PwC... 

Mercedes-Benz SA says pilot solar project a success; plans expansion 

By: Irma Venter     29th June 2022 Mercedes-Benz South Africa (MBSA) has declared its pilot solar energy project a success. MBSA piloted the project in order to evaluate the solar yield for the East London manufacturing plant, in the Eastern Cape. 

Image of the solar panel roof installation at MBSA plant

Gordhan says Eskom, unions reach wage agreement; hopes second day of Stage 6 load-shedding can be avoided 

By: Chanel de Bruyn     28th June 2022 Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan on Tuesday evening said he was hopeful that Eskom would be able to avoid implementing Stage 6 load-shedding for a second day on Wednesday, after the power utility and unions had reached a wage agreement earlier in the day. Eskom on Tuesday afternoon... 

Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan

Production continuing despite Nelson Mandela Bay water crisis ­­­– VWSA 

By: Irma Venter     27th June 2022 Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) says production of the Polo and Polo Vivo at its Kariega plant in the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality is continuing, despite the water supply crisis in the area. “Our Kariega plant is operating as normal and there are no issues as yet with the water supply,”... 

VWSA's Kariega plant

PRASA awards R7.5bn in contracts for rolling stock overhaul 

By: Irma Venter     27th June 2022 The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) has awarded five companies general overhaul contracts for its older rolling stock to the value of R7.5-billion. The agency says the five-year contracts will allow for the heavy maintenance and repairs of its existing train sets, while also... 

A Metrorail train

Earth & Wire targets Eastern Cape for first long-duration storage roll-out 

By: Terence Creamer     27th June 2022 Independent renewable energy company Earth & Wire expects to begin installing its first long-duration energy storage system in South Africa in 2024 after announcing a 300 MW/1 200 MWh order for a battery system from Ambri, of the US. First deliveries are scheduled for the second quarter of 2024,... 

Artist impression of the Ambri storage system

TNPA embarks on ambitious R9.1bn seven-year infrastructure development programme 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     24th June 2022 Further to Transnet National Port Authority’s (TNPA’s) “reimagined” operational model, launched in November last year, and increased efficiency initiatives that are under way, the State-owned utility has announced it will spend R9.1-billion over the next seven years on capital projects in the... 

Port of Ngqura
Port of Ngqura

Stage 4 load-shedding extended into weekend as illegal strike disrupts coal plants 

By: Terence Creamer     24th June 2022 Eskom has extended Stage 4 load-shedding – initially implemented at 11:00 on Friday June 24, as an illegal strike led to the loss of more coal production – until Sunday and the utility has also refrained from providing a system prognosis for the coming week. COO Jan Oberholzer said the decision... 

Stage 4 load-shedding extended into weekend as illegal strike disrupts coal plants

Renewed focus on South Africa's Just Energy Transition Partnership  

24th June 2022 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the fresh attention this week on the $8.5-billion Just Energy Transition Partnership (JET-P) between South Africa and various developed countries; the importance of South Africa finalising a JET-P investment... 

Photo of Terence Creamer
Renewed focus on South Africa's Just Energy Transition Partnership

US wants South Africa’s just transition investment plan aligned with lower end of decarbonisation pledge 

By: Terence Creamer     23rd June 2022 South Africa’s Just Energy Transition Partnership Investment Plan, or JETP-IP, should be geared towards projects that will support the country in meeting the lower end of its new Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), a senior US Treasury official has indicated. Ahead of the 2021 COP26 climate... 

Solar panels at the Komati power station, where some initial JETP projects could be located
Solar panels at the Komati power station, where some initial JETP projects could be located

Numsa to picket the Japanese embassy on future of Nissan plant; Nissan denies closure rumours 

By: Irma Venter     23rd June 2022 The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) says it will be picketing the Japanese Embassy in Pretoria on Friday. The union intends to hand over a memorandum of demands regarding a “number of grievances” against Nissan’s management in South Africa.  

Image of Navara production at the Rosslyn plant

Afrimat Construction Index shows first quarter decline 

By: Irma Venter     23rd June 2022 Although the Afrimat Construction Index (ACI) has marginally outperformed South Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate during the first quarter of 2022 on a year-on-year basis, the index has returned to a trend of declining between each year’s fourth quarter and the first quarter of... 

Image of a construction site

Eskom set to host first roundtable with energy experts as load-shedding is extended 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd June 2022 Eskom CEO André de Ryuter reports that the utility will host its first roundtable with local and international energy experts on Friday June 24 to discuss solutions to the country’s electricity crisis and ongoing load-shedding. Speaking during a briefing to explain a decision to extend rotational... 

Eskom's Megawatt Park HQ
Photo by Creamer Media
Eskom's Megawatt Park HQ

Eskom signs battery contracts with Pinggao and Hyosung as part of R11bn roll-out 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd June 2022 State-owned electricity utility Eskom has confirmed that it has awarded battery energy storage system (BESS) contracts to two suppliers for projects with a combined capacity of 199 MW/833 MWh. CEO André de Ruyter confirmed on Wednesday that the BESS programme, which is being funded through a... 

Eskom CEO André de Ruyter
Eskom CEO André de Ruyter

Final Just Energy Transition Partnership Investment Plan expected by November 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd June 2022 A Just Energy Transition Partnership Investment Plan (JETP-IP), which will seek to unlock $8.5-billion in concessional climate finance to accelerate South Africa’s transition from coal to renewables and support workers and communities currently reliant on the coal value chain, is expected to be... 

COP President Alok Sharma
COP President Alok Sharma

Operation Vulindlela making progress in driving priority structural reforms  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     21st June 2022 The Presidency’s Operation Vulindlela (OV) has made markable process on accelerating implementation of priority structural reforms since its establishment in October 2020. Presidency project management office head Rudi Dicks addressed delegates during the Manufacturing Indaba, held in Sandton on... 

Solar PV panels
Presidency private office director Saul Musker explains how far Operation Vulindlela has come with assisting structural reform

BMW SA adds 16 African countries to its export list 

By: Irma Venter     21st June 2022 BMW Group South Africa (BMW SA) has added 16 African countries to its existing portfolio of 30 export countries, including Senegal, Nigeria, Angola, Kenya and Ethiopia.  BMW SA produces the BMW X3 sports activity vehicle (SAV) at the Rosslyn plant, in Tshwane. 

Image of the BMW X3
The BMW X3

Patel says ‘pragmatic solution’ to be found to localisation-linked renewables delays  

By: Terence Creamer     21st June 2022 Trade, Industry and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel reports that government is working to find a “pragmatic solution” to the problem where local-content requirements contained in government’s electricity procurement programmes are delaying the construction of utility scale renewable-energy... 

Trade, Industry and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel
Trade, Industry and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel on localising renewables components in a pragmatic way. Camera Work: Shadwyn Dickinson. Editing: Nicholas Boyd. Recorded: 21.06.2022

Finance ‘sea change’ needed for Africa to meet $190bn/y energy investment goal 

By: Terence Creamer     20th June 2022 Achieving Africa’s energy and climate goals by 2030, including universal access, will require a more than doubling in energy investment this decade, rising to a yearly rate of $190-billion from 2026 to 2030, a new International Energy Agency (IEA) report shows. It will also require the connection... 

Executive director Dr Fatih Birol
Executive director Dr Fatih Birol

Delay gas procurement until policy reflects big cost and emission shifts – study 

By: Terence Creamer     20th June 2022 Before moving ahead with the procurement of gas-fired generation, South Africa should update both its Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity and its Gas Master Plan to reflect prevailing renewables and battery costs, as well as the country’s carbon constraints, a new Meridian Economics... 

Study argues that deploying gas generators
Study argues that deploying gas generators "optimally" as peakers implies that the electricity sector cannot anchor demand for LNG imports

Labour migration policy nearing completion, says Nxesi as truckers intensify action over foreign drivers  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     17th June 2022 The Employment and Labour Department is finalising policy that will help to regulate the extends to which foreign nationals can be employed in South Africa, Minister Thulas Nxesi said on Friday. His comments come as trucker drivers this week intensified their national strike against the... 

Labour migration policy nearing completion, says Nxesi as truckers intensify action over foreign drivers

Calls for petrol price deregulation display lack of knowledge – FRA 

By: Irma Venter     17th June 2022 Increasing calls from the public for the petrol price to be deregulated speak of ignorance, warns Fuel Retailers Association (FRA) CEO Reggie Sibiya. “As fuel prices continue to rise, there is pressure on retailers to cut margins and be in competition with each other, which is absolutely... 

Image of a Shell service station

Eskom has 32 GW of grid capacity, but not where most renewables investors want it 

By: Terence Creamer     17th June 2022 Eskom acknowledges that transmission constraints remain an obstacle to the introduction of new renewables generation, but the utility also highlights that 32 GW of grid capacity is immediately available to those independent power producers (IPPs) willing to build projects outside of the country’s... 

Eskom power lines
Photo by Creamer Media
Eskom power lines

Motsepe Foundation, partners invest in projects to uplift farmers, communities

By: Darren Parker     15th June 2022 Nonprofit organisation the Motsepe Foundation has launched two large-scale agricultural and farming projects involving rural and traditional communities in Limpopo and Mpumalanga, in partnership with agriculture industry association Agri SA and established commercial farmers and agribusinesses.... 

Dr Patrice Motsepe
Photo by Creamer Media's Darren Parker
Dr Patrice Motsepe

Proposals made to end worsening load-shedding  

By: Creamer Media Reporter      15th June 2022 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about warnings that load-shedding could become much worse if urgent action is not taken, proposals by Meridien Economics and other experts on how to end load-shedding and the need for political will and coordination... 

Photo of Terence Creamer
Proposals made to end worsening load-shedding

SA faces unique EV conundrum, warns Frost & Sullivan research director

By: Irma Venter     15th June 2022 It is impossible to draw a direct comparison between South Africa and other countries that have adopted strategies to push the uptake of electric vehicles (EVs), warns Frost & Sullivan research director Craig Parker. He says that South Africa’s economic structure and demographic profile are... 

Image of Frost & Sullivan research director Craig Parker
Craig Parker

Climate Commission sets sights on energy mix as it wraps up work on just transition framework 

By: Terence Creamer     14th June 2022 The Presidential Climate Commission (PCC) is initiating a process of research and consultation on South Africa’s future energy mix, which it aims to present to Cabinet before the end of 2022. Speaking at a conference hosted by the RES4Africa Foundation in Johannesburg, executive director Dr... 

PCC executive director Dr Crispian Olver
PCC executive director Dr Crispian Olver

VWSA builds wastewater recycling facility, installs solar plant

By: Irma Venter     14th June 2022 Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) has implemented two projects to reduce the environmental footprint of its Kariega plant, situated in the drought-stricken Nelson Mandela Bay municipality. The first project is a wastewater recycling facility, which has been constructed onsite at the plant.  

Image of project team members for the wastewater facility are Nick Chapman, Hermann Ferreira, Manfred Gie, Gerhardt Goosen and Cibin Mathew
Project team members for the wastewater facility: Nick Chapman, Hermann Ferreira, Manfred Gie, Gerhardt Goosen and Cibin Mathew

Cape Town to start Metrorail take-over feasibility study on July 1 

By: Irma Venter     13th June 2022 The City of Cape Town will, on July 1, start a feasibility study on the devolution of the city’s passenger rail system from the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) to the metro. PRASA currently operates all commuter passenger rail systems in the country, with the exception of the Gautrain. 

Image of Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis
Geordin Hill-Lewis inspecting a Metrorail station

New report outlines strategy for ending load-shedding by early 2024, but delivery hinges on ‘substantial political will’ 

By: Terence Creamer     13th June 2022 A comprehensive strategy for drastically reducing, or even eliminating, the scourge of rotational power cuts in South Africa by early 2024 has been outlined in a new public-interest report published by Meridian Economics. The authors warn, however, that load-shedding is poised to rise to extreme... 

Solar and wind generators

OpenSpace launches ‘Google Street View’ for construction projects  

By: Irma Venter     10th June 2022 Stellenbosch-based Agile Business Technology (ABT) has partnered with US group OpenSpace to launch its 360° capture and artificial intelligence (AI) platform for construction projects in South Africa. By using the 360° images generated in OpenSpace to document an evolving jobsite, teams can... 

Image of ABT architecture, engineering and construction solutions director Jaco Barnard
Jaco Barnard

The latest developments on the electricity front  

By: Creamer Media Reporter      10th June 2022 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the progress being made with the registration of distributed generation projects; load-shedding; Eskom consulting with experts about possible energy sector solutions; and President Cyril Ramaphosa's six-point... 

Photo of Terence Creamer
The latest developments on the electricity front

Eskom to transfer R39.9bn loan to transmission unit 

By: Bloomberg     10th June 2022 Eskom Holdings said it will give the transmission unit that it’s transforming into a separate entity a R39.9-billion loan to make sure it can complete projects and be financially viable. The loan will be guaranteed by the transmission unit’s assets with Eskom’s creditors able to call on them if... 

An image of power lines

Workers must play central role in shaping just energy transition, unions insist  

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     10th June 2022 As South Africa continues on its journey towards realising a just energy transition (JET), workers and unions have expressed their support for the move and for alternative sources of energy to be part of the energy mix, provided that labour plays a significant role, that its views are taken on... 

Magazine cover image

Ramaphosa outlines six steps to tackle electricity deficit in disrupted Budget Vote speech  

By: Terence Creamer     9th June 2022 President Cyril Ramaphosa outlined six steps for addressing the country’s electricity shortfall in a Budget Vote speech that was delayed and disrupted by opposition Members of Parliament who objected to the address from proceeding in light of a criminal complaint having been lodged against... 

President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

First electric minibus to start testing in Stellenbosch early next year 

By: Irma Venter     9th June 2022 GoMetro has convened a project team consisting of companies and researchers to test the first electric minibus in South African conditions by January next year. GoMetro, a global mobility management technology company with its head office in Cape Town, has collected data on taxi operations across... 

First electric minibus to start testing in Stellenbosch early next year

Here’s one idea for ending load-shedding within two years  

By: Terence Creamer     9th June 2022 As Eskom consults a range of experts to assess potential solutions for resolving the load-shedding crisis, independent energy analyst Clyde Mallinson has a proposal that he believes will end rotational power cuts in two years without creating stranded assets or increasing tariffs. The proposed... 

Independent energy analyst Clyde Mallinson
Independent energy analyst Clyde Mallinson

Transnet’s interpretation of third-party access will see no investment – ARIA 

By: Irma Venter     8th June 2022 African Rail Industry Association (ARIA) CEO Mesela Nhlapo says the association has serious concerns regarding the restrictive terms and conditions Transnet has imposed on the use of the national rail network by private third-party freight operators. A key element of the newly unveiled National... 

Image of Transient trains
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