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Coal & Diesel News

PIC proposes converting Eskom bonds into equity - chairperson

By: Reuters     28th May 2020 South African state asset manager the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) has submitted a proposal to government on converting bonds it holds in struggling state utility Eskom into equity, PIC chairperson Reuel Khoza told Reuters in an interview. Khoza said the PIC had discussed the proposal with... 

Pandemic-induced slump in global energy investment risks locking in obsolete technologies 

By: Terence Creamer     27th May 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic has set in motion the largest drop in global energy investment in history, with spending expected to plunge by $400-billion in 2020, a new International Energy Agency (IEA) report shows. Describing the slump as “unparalleled” and “staggering” in both scale and swiftness, the... 

Pandemic-induced slump in global energy investment risks locking in obsolete technologies
IEA executive director Dr Fatih Birol

Bid documents for 2 000-MW emergency power being finalised after Nersa concurrence ‘milestone’ 

By: Terence Creamer     26th May 2020 The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) confirmed on Tuesday that the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) had concurred with a Ministerial determination submitted to the regulator in February for the procurement of 2 000 MW of emergency electricity from independent... 

Bid documents for 2 000-MW emergency power being finalised after Nersa concurrence ‘milestone’
IPP Office working on scheme to procure 128 MW of additional energy from existing wind and solar farms

Eskom committed to ‘aggressive’ end-2021 unbundling timeline  

By: Terence Creamer     21st May 2020 Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter describes as “aggressive” the end-of-2021 deadline for completing the unbundling of the vertically integrated power utility but insisted on Thursday that he was fully committed to adhering to the timeline contained in government’s restructuring roadmap. During a virtual... 

Eskom committed to ‘aggressive’ end-2021 unbundling timeline
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter on how Eskom plan to recover from its current downward trajectory. Camera Work: Kutlwano Matlala. Editing: Nicholas Boyd

Eskom CEO sees sustainable future if R450bn debt pile can be slashed

By: Reuters     21st May 2020 The chief executive of South Africa's Eskom said on Thursday the State power utility could become financially viable and do without government bailouts if it could more than halve its debt to R200-billion. Eskom has about R450-billion of debt and is mired in financial crisis as it does not... 

As Eskom rolls out boiler fixes to more Medupi units, it confirms FGD talks with World Bank 

By: Terence Creamer     21st May 2020 Electricity utility Eskom is rolling-out design modifications made recently to Medupi Unit 3 to Medupi Unit 6, rather than waiting for the results of an evaluation of the fixes, which is proceeding in parallel. The unit was shut for 75 days on January 26 to address defects that emerged, mostly in... 

As Eskom rolls out boiler fixes to more Medupi units, it confirms FGD talks with World Bank
COO Jan Oberholzer on the rolling-out of design modifications at Medupi. Camera Work: Kutlwano Matlala. Editing: Nicholas Boyd

NUM concerned about high numbers of Covid-19 in mines, at Eskom operations

By: Donna Slater     21st May 2020 The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) is concerned about the rising number of Covid-19-positive cases in the mining industry, especially in Limpopo, and at State-owned power utility Eskom's operations. The union states that some mines in Limpopo have become hotspots, where the virus is... 

Creecy takes decisive action against Eskom’s noncompliance at Kendal

By: Marleny Arnoldi     18th May 2020 The Centre for Environmental Rights (CER) has welcomed the decisive action taken against Eskom’s Kendal power station by Environment, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Barbara Creecy. The Minister has ordered the State-owned power utility to, within 30 days, stop operations at either Unit 1 or... 

Creecy takes decisive action against Eskom’s noncompliance at Kendal
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Environment, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Barbara Creecy

Nersa allows Eskom to claw back R13.3bn in tariffs 

By: Reuters     18th May 2020 South African energy regulator Nersa said on Friday it will allow utility Eskom to recover R13.3-billion from customers for electricity supplied in the 2018/19 financial year, lower than what the state-owned power utility had applied for. Nersa said in a statement it will give its reasons for the... 

Nersa allows Eskom to claw back R13.3bn in tariffs

Kibo shareholders to vote on reorganisation of share capital as Covid-19 disrupts operations

By: Donna Slater     15th May 2020 Owing to the adverse impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on international business and the uncertainty surrounding the global economic outlook, Africa-focused energy company Kibo Energy is re-evaluating its business plans, partly involving the potential reorganisation of its share capital. The share... 

Cape Town in landmark suit to open South Africa’s power system

By: Bloomberg     13th May 2020 The city of Cape Town is awaiting a court ruling on whether it can buy its own electricity from suppliers other than national power utility Eskom Holdings without getting approval from the energy minister. Judge Leonie Windell of South Africa’s High Court on Tuesday reserved judgment in the case... 

Council increases mapping to drive South Africa's exploration attractiveness 

By: Donna Slater     12th May 2020 As part of government’s response to keep the South African economy afloat during the outbreak of Covid-19 and beyond, the Council for Geosciences (CGS) has been mandated to increase its country-wide survey to bolster South Africa as an exploration hotspot once the lockdown is over. CGS CEO Mosa... 

Eskom progresses with generation unit repairs at Medupi   

By: Marleny Arnoldi     11th May 2020 State-owned power utility Eskom has announced that its Unit 3 at Medupi power station is up and running following a 75-day outage to repair major design defects. The unit has now reached its full generation capacity of 793 MW.  

Eskom progresses with generation unit repairs at Medupi
Medupi power station

Local energy not managed efficiently

By: Tracy Hancock     8th May 2020 South Africa is not using its world-class renewable energy resources to drive energy efficiency, says independent conservation organisation World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa (WWF-SA) urban futures project manager Louise Scholtz. “If we were, South Africa’s Integrated Resources Plan 2019... 

Local energy not managed efficiently
TRANSFORMATIVE DEVELOPMENTS The decreasing cost of renewable-energy technologies, such as rooftop solar photovoltaic, are one of the developments transforming South Africa’s energy market

Full legal separation of Eskom divisions still years off, lawmakers hear 

By: Terence Creamer     7th May 2020 Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter told lawmakers on May 6 that “good progress” had been made on the “divisionalisation”, under Eskom Holdings, of the utility’s generation, transmission and distribution businesses, with separate boards and MDs having been appointed for each unit. He also indicated,... 

Full legal separation of Eskom divisions still years off, lawmakers hear
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

Eskom reports lost income of R2.5bn in April

By: African News Agency      7th May 2020 Eskom's income has shrunk by about R2.5 billion in April as energy demand plummeted due to the country's national lockdown in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the power utility's CEO Andre de Ruyter said on Wednesday. "We have seen a reduction in cash-generation for April of some R2.5 billion.... 

Eskom reports lost income of R2.5bn in April
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

Renewables to be only energy growth source in 2020 as markets experience ‘biggest shock since Second World War’

By: Terence Creamer     30th April 2020 Renewables will be the only energy source to experience growth in 2020, as Covid-19 lockdowns trigger a plunge in demand for all other energy sources amid what the International Energy Agency (IEA) is describing as the “biggest energy market shock since the Second World War”. A new IEA report,... 

Renewables to be only energy growth source in 2020 as markets experience ‘biggest shock since Second World War’
IEA executive director Fatih Birol

Eskom advises of staged repairs to Kendal’s noncomplying units

By: Marleny Arnoldi     30th April 2020 State-owned power utility Eskom has acknowledged the environmental breaches emanating from the operation of its Kendal power station and is in the process of mending the technical faults that led to the environmental breaches. However, the utility advises that this will take some time to be... 

Eskom advises of staged repairs to Kendal’s noncomplying units
Photo by Creamer Media
Kendal power station

Eskom shuts power plant after warning ash dam may collapse

By: Bloomberg     30th April 2020 Eskom Holdings, South Africa’s State-owned electricity utility, said it has temporarily closed its Camden power plant because the dam where it stores the ash from burning coal could burst and endanger local residents. The 1,600-megawatt power plant will be closed for up to three months after a... 

Eskom seeks to repurpose three coal-fired power stations 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      29th April 2020 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News editor Terence Creamer about Eskom's plans for repurposing three coal-fired power stations, in Mpumalanga, that are due to close in the next few years. 

Eskom seeks to repurpose three coal-fired power stations
Eskom seeks to repurpose three coal-fired power stations

Eskom says all repurposing options on table for Komati, Hendrina and Grootvlei 

By: Terence Creamer     28th April 2020 State-owned power utility Eskom insists that all options are on the table as it considers proposals for the repurposing of three coal-fired power stations – Komati, Hendrina and Grootvlei – that are scheduled to cease producing electricity between 2022 and 2026. The utility issued an expression... 

Eskom says all repurposing options on table for Komati, Hendrina and Grootvlei
Komati

Opinion: Why should SA’s post-Covid-19 stimulus incorporate a big green-energy component?

By: Tobias Bischof-Niemz     24th April 2020 Governments around the world are grappling with ways to reignite their economies and limit the duration of recessions precipitated by the response to the Covid-19 pandemic. South Africa is no different. Naturally, the first response of the South African authorities has been to direct limited... 

Opinion: Why should SA’s post-Covid-19 stimulus incorporate a big green-energy component?

2019 set a record for renewable electricity generation in the UK

By: Rebecca Campbell     24th April 2020 In a report issued on April 9, the British Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) reported that, based on provisional figures, last year had been a record year for the production of electricity using renewable technologies in the UK. Renewable electricity generation last... 

Opinion: Covid-19 presents opportunity to rethink impact of mines on communities

22nd April 2020 The temporary closure and imminent reopening of mines across the country in the coming weeks provides an opportunity for mine bosses to assess and rethink their impact on communities, say Louise Scholtz and Khodani Mulaudzi of the World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa (WWF-SA). In a small town... 

Opinion: Covid-19 presents opportunity to rethink impact of mines on communities
WWF-SA's Khodani Mulaudzi and Louise Scholtz

M&R warns of impact of Covid-19 on full-year earnings

By: Marleny Arnoldi     17th April 2020 JSE-listed engineering and construction services group Murray & Roberts (M&R) continues to experience the impact on its projects from measures to contain the spread of Covid-19. In South Africa, the group is impacted by the extended lockdown period to end-April, and in Australasia and the... 

Decarbonising of local power generation sedate

By: Tracy Hancock     17th April 2020 Decarbonising South Africa’s electricity generation is no longer a technical challenge, it is a political and economic issue, says University of Pretoria Graduate School of Technology Management professor David Walwyn.  The Integrated Resource Plan 2019 (IRP 2019) forecasts that it will take... 

Decarbonising of local power generation sedate
RENEWED PROJECTION The growing appeal of grid-tied and standalone rooftop solar systems may alter the Integrated Resource Plan’s 30-year projection for the decarbonising of South Africa’s electric power generation

Absa imposes strict new coal project financing criteria

By: Marleny Arnoldi     16th April 2020 Absa has published an updated sustainability policy and standard for financing coal, affirming the bank’s commitment to responsible financing and doing its bit towards mitigating climate change. The updated policy applies the Principles for Responsible Banking, which is the framework that... 

Restrictions eased on various industries as South Africa enters extended lockdown phase  

By: Terence Creamer     16th April 2020 The South African government announced the easing of lockdown restrictions for parts of the logistics, retail, services, mining and energy sectors on April 16, as the country entered the second phase of what was initially meant to be a 21-day nationwide lockdown in response to the Covid-19... 

 Restrictions eased on various industries as South Africa enters extended lockdown phase
Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma

Eskom’s Bernard Magoro appointed as new head of IPP Office 

By: Terence Creamer     8th April 2020 The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) announced on Wednesday, April 8, that former Eskom executive Tshifhiwa Bernard Magoro had been appointed as the new head of the Independent Power Producers Office (IPPO). The appointment would be effective from May 1. 

Eskom’s Bernard Magoro appointed as new head of IPP Office
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Tshifhiwa Bernard Magoro

Eskom extends bidding deadline for short-term power purchase scheme 

By: Terence Creamer     8th April 2020 Electricity utility Eskom has extended the deadline, to May 11, for responses to a request for proposals (RFP) to participate in its Short-Term Power Purchase Programme (STPPP), owing to the imposition of a 21-day lockdown in South Africa in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. The initial bid... 

Eskom extends bidding deadline for short-term power purchase scheme

Eskom wants Medupi Unit 3 defect repairs completed on schedule despite Covid-19 restrictions 

By: Terence Creamer     3rd April 2020 State-owned electricity utility Eskom has not shifted its April 9 deadline for returning Medupi Unit 3 to service, despite work restrictions imposed at the Lephalale site, in Limpopo, in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. The unit was shut for 75 days on January 26 to address defects that... 

Eskom wants Medupi Unit 3 defect repairs completed on schedule despite Covid-19 restrictions
Photo by Bloomberg
All work has been stopped on Kusile units 4, 5 and 6 for the duration of the lockdown

Eskom to temporarily shut Koeberg Unit 2

By: Donna Slater     2nd April 2020 From midnight on April 3, power utility Eskom will take Unit 2 of the Koeberg nuclear power station, in the Western Cape, offline. The unit is scheduled to return to service by April 30, if not required before then. From midnight on April 3, power utility Eskom will take Unit 2 of the Koeberg... 

Eskom to temporarily shut Koeberg Unit 2

Eskom gearing up to run philosophy maintenance ‘as a project’ following Covid-19 hiatus 

By: Terence Creamer     1st April 2020 State-owned electricity producer Eskom is gearing up to implement philosophy maintenance as a centralised project across its unreliable coal fleet, where ongoing breakdowns have increased the risk of growth- and confidence-sapping load-shedding. The utility’s board has given its approval for the... 

Eskom gearing up to run philosophy maintenance ‘as a project’ following Covid-19 hiatus

Eskom postpones ‘philosophy maintenance’ as it shuts units in response to drop in demand 

By: Terence Creamer     27th March 2020 State-owned electricity producer Eskom has reported that demand dropped by more than 6 000 MW on the afternoon of March 26 as businesses shut in anticipation of the start of the nationwide Covid-19 lockdown. The utility also indicated that a further reduction in demand was anticipated for the... 

Eskom postpones ‘philosophy maintenance’ as it shuts units in response to drop in demand

Industry reaction to Minister’s call for higher levels of clean-coal investment

By: Mamaili Mamaila     27th March 2020 There is much scepticism domestically and internationally about the potential for clean-coal technology (CCT). In South Africa, however, there has been an amplification in recent months of calls for accelerated efforts to be made to finding innovative solutions to the serious environmental and... 

Industry reaction to Minister’s call for higher levels  of clean-coal investment
Photo by GE
POWER PLANT OPTIMISATION Eskom’s Kusile power station’s use of the wet flue gas desulphurisation technology ensures lower emissions

Mining to be ‘scaled down significantly’ during 21-day lockdown 

By: Terence Creamer     25th March 2020 Mining operations in South Africa are to be “scaled down significantly” during the 21-day lockdown period, particularly labour-intensive, deep-level mining activities, Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe reported on March 25. However, mines supplying coal to Eskom would remain in... 

Mining to be ‘scaled down significantly’ during 21-day lockdown

Risk of load-shedding will be low during lockdown - Mantashe  

By: Terence Creamer     25th March 2020 Security of energy supply remains critical during the Covid-19 lockdown period, Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe reiterated on March 25. The supply of fuel to critical and essential services, as well as the supply of coal to Eskom for electricity supply and liquid fuels... 

Risk of load-shedding will be low during lockdown - Mantashe
Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe r
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