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Electricity News

New global costs report confirms new renewables are undercutting existing coal

By: Terence Creamer     Updated 1 hour 49 minutes ago The cost of electricity from new solar and wind plants is increasingly undercutting the operating costs alone of existing coal‑fired power plants and strengthening the case for their early retirement, a newly released International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena) report confirms. Published on... 

Energy justice a useful metric for shaping broad, effective policies for a just transition

By: Schalk Burger     Updated 3 hours ago A just energy transition that mitigates the risks and captures the benefits of renewable energy in developing countries can be achieved through a broad policy framework developed using energy justice as a key set of metrics, say development academics University of Hamburg political science... 

Scatec says RMIPPPP could ‘revolutionise’ the way power is generated, if successful

By: Simone Liedtke     Updated 5 hours ago The Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producer Procurement Program (RMIPPPP) is a progressive step in South Africa’s energy history and, if successful, could revolutionise the way power is generated and procured in the country, suggests Scatec sub-Saharan Africa GM Jan Fourie. He notes that... 

Scatec says RMIPPPP could ‘revolutionise’ the way power is generated, if successful

Civil war hardens Ethiopian Nile-dam stance, Sudan Minister says

By: Bloomberg     22nd June 2021 The carnage of Ethiopia’s civil war is making its rulers less willing to compromise with Sudan and Egypt in a dispute over the imminent filling of its giant Nile dam, a Sudan official said, as his government urges the United Nations to prevent any unilateral move. With Ethiopia embroiled in an... 

Biomass heating solution lowers costs

By: Donna Slater     21st June 2021 Cape Town-based heating solutions firm Calore Sustainable Energy (CSE) has developed a new biomass combustion technology that it claims delivers significant savings for industrial clients requiring heating solutions. Calore co-founder Davide Marchesini says that producing heat to generate hot... 

PPC mulls several low-carbon opportunities as it shows signs of business stabilisation 

By: Terence Creamer     21st June 2021 Cementitious products manufacturer PPC is considering several initiatives aimed at lowering the carbon footprint of its operations and products as its far-reaching organisational and financial restructuring begins yielding results and creates space for the JSE-listed group to start focusing on... 

PPC mulls several low-carbon opportunities as it shows signs of business stabilisation
PPC CEO Roland van Wijnen

Renergen discovers 1.1% helium concentration at Evander prospect

By: Simone Liedtke     21st June 2021 Natural gas and helium producer Renergen has discovered helium at its Evander exploration rights prospect, with a concentration of 1.1% helium identified in the gas. Evander spans about 52 000 ha, with many abandoned holes drilled for coal and gold exploration. Evander is also conveniently... 

Aref II secures almost half of targeted capitalisation

By: Marleny Arnoldi     18th June 2021 The Africa Renewable Energy Fund (Aref) II has concluded its first close at €130-million, following a joint investment of €17.5-million from The Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa and the Climate Technology Fund through the African Development Bank (AfDB). Aref II, a successor to the original... 

100 MW reform ‘precursor’ to new market-driven electricity supply industry – De Ruyter 

By: Terence Creamer     18th June 2021 Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter has described the decision to lift the licence-exemption cap on own- or embedded-generation plants from 1 MW to 100 MW as not only positive for addressing South Africa’s immediate electricity shortages, but also as “the precursor to the development of a new electricity... 

100 MW reform ‘precursor’ to new market-driven electricity supply industry – De Ruyter
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

Fishermen, oyster farmers fear power-generating ship will kill business

By: Reuters     18th June 2021 A floating gas-turbine generator meant to alleviate South Africa's crippling power cuts has run into objections by oyster farmers and small-scale fishermen, who fear the environmental damage will destroy their livelihoods. The seafood sellers fear the 415 MW ship - to be moored for two decades at... 

Kenya utility joins global emissions project, plans carbon trade

By: Bloomberg     18th June 2021 Kenya Electricity Generating Co, Africa’s largest geothermal producer, joined a United Nations-backed emissions-reduction programme as it looks to begin a domestic carbon market. KenGen, as the State-run company is known, announced its participation in the Business Ambition for 1.5°C programme on... 

Strong policy needed to grow a green biofuels industry

By: Nadine Ramdass     18th June 2021 To ensure that the South African biofuels industry grows sustainably, World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa (WWF-SA) Bioenergy programme manager Tjaša Bole-Rentel says there needs to be a differentiation at policy level based on each biofuel’s environmental impact. Biofuels have the potential... 

Strong policy needed to grow a green biofuels industry
BIOFUEL POWERED DELIVERY VAN Biofuels can burn cleaner but are not climate neutral

Biofuels framework is inadequate

By: Nadine Ramdass     18th June 2021 Although the biofuels regulatory framework aims to provide guidance and regulation for the industry and its processes, its falling short in several areas could inhibit its growth in an already challenging environment, says Wits Business School African Energy Leadership Centre director Professor... 

Biofuels framework is inadequate
LWAZI NGUBEVANA South Africa’s biofuels growth needs a clear, supportive framework

Localisation of equipment promotes price stability

By: Nadine Ramdass     18th June 2021 Rand volatility has a big impact on projects that require imported biogas equipment ,however the localisation of some equipment can help the biogas industry gain some stability, says organic waste solutions company Logical Waste director Jason Gifford. It was a good time to import equipment over... 

Localisation of equipment promotes price stability
BIO-PELLETS FUEL IN A BOILER The right equipment is a key aspect for successful projects

Association offers value to stakeholders

By: Nadine Ramdass     18th June 2021 Stakeholders in the biofuels and biogas industry can advocate for better legislation and connect with other stakeholders by being active members of associations such as the Southern African Biogas Industry Association (SABIA). The association also makes it possible for stakeholders and interested... 

Association offers value to stakeholders
BIOGAS FACILITY ON FARM Anaerobic digestion converts hazardous organic waste

Rolls-Royce announces net zero emissions plans

By: Donna Slater     17th June 2021 Power and propulsion engineering company Rolls-Royce has announced its plans to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050, at the latest. The company’s actions and the development of new low-carbon technologies will enable the users of such products to, in turn, lower their carbon emissions,... 

Emergency power fiasco compounds South Africa’s energy crisis

By: Bloomberg     17th June 2021 The debacle surrounding South Africa’s bid to secure emergency power supplies has highlighted a dysfunctional energy policy that’s subjecting Africa’s most-industrialised nation to intermittent blackouts. Since March, the energy department has identified companies it wants to provide almost 2 000... 

Emergency power fiasco compounds South Africa’s energy crisis

South Africa will continue to remove barriers to growth and investment, Ramaphosa tells investors 

By: Terence Creamer     17th June 2021 Having already announced a key reform for the electricity sector, President Cyril Ramaphosa told international investors on Thursday that the country will continue to remove barriers to growth and investment through the Operation Vulindlela delivery mechanism. In an address to the SA Tomorrow... 

South Africa will continue to remove barriers to growth and investment, Ramaphosa tells investors
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Kibo Energy seeks to sell coal assets as its focus shifts to renewables

By: Simone Liedtke     17th June 2021 Africa and UK-focused energy company Kibo Energy’s primary focus going forward will be on renewable energy opportunities, part of which will see Kibo jointly develop a portfolio of waste-to-energy projects in South Africa. Kibo, therefore, intends to appoint specialist advisers to assist it in... 

GreenCape’s 2021 market intelligence reports highlight Western Cape investment opportunities

By: Simone Liedtke     17th June 2021 GreenCape’s 2021 market intelligence reports (MIRs), produced in partnership with the Western Cape Government’s Department of Economic Development and Tourism, are now available for download. The reports highlight the investment opportunities in key sectors of the green economy in the province,... 

SAPVIA adds voice of support for 100 MW distributed generation licensing-exemption threshold

By: Simone Liedtke     17th June 2021 The South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (SAPVIA) has added its voice to the growing number of supportive voices following President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement that the licensing threshold for embedded generation plants will increase to 100 MW. In welcoming the news, SAPVIA... 

SAPVIA adds voice of support for 100 MW distributed generation licensing-exemption threshold
SAPVIA COO Niveshen Govender

Emergency power fiasco compounds South Africa’s energy crisis

By: Bloomberg     17th June 2021 The debacle surrounding South Africa’s bid to secure emergency power supplies has highlighted a dysfunctional energy policy that’s subjecting Africa’s most-industrialized nation to intermittent blackouts. Since March, the energy department has identified companies it wants to provide almost 2 000... 

Large methane leak detected over South Africa coal mining region

By: Bloomberg     16th June 2021 A cloud of methane was detected by satellite near coal mines in South Africa, drawing attention to a lesser-known environmental risk that comes from using the dirtiest fossil fuel. The potent greenhouse gas — methane traps roughly 84 times more heat than carbon dioxide in its first two decades in... 

Large methane leak detected over South Africa coal mining region

Fourth international WindAc Africa conference to be held in October

By: Simone Liedtke     15th June 2021 The South African Wind Energy Association (SAWEA) will host the fourth international academic wind energy conference – WindAc Africa 2021 – at the South African Renewable Energy Technology Centre’s conference centre, in Cape Town, from October 5 to 7. This academic exchange platform offers a... 

Fourth international WindAc Africa conference to be held in October
SAWEA CEO Ntombifuthi Ntuli

Mediclinic signs 12-year solar power purchase agreement 

By: Schalk Burger     15th June 2021 Private healthcare and hospital company Mediclinic on June 15 announced that it had signed a 12-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with sustainable infrastructure investment fund manager Moshesh Partners, to reduce the hospital group's energy costs. Mediclinic, based in South Africa and Namibia,... 

Global stock-taking report points to only modest renewables gains in total final energy consumption 

By: Terence Creamer     15th June 2021 A new international stock-take of the global transition to renewable energy highlights an “alarming gap between targets and actions” with the share of fossil fuels in energy consumption failing to decrease for the tenth consecutive year in 2020, despite a 4% Covid-linked fall in demand. Published... 

Global stock-taking report points to only modest renewables gains in total final energy consumption

VW CEO chides G7 Leaders for failing to set coal phase-out date

By: Bloomberg     15th June 2021 Volkswagen’s CEO criticized Group of Seven (G7) leaders for failing to set a firm date to phase out coal power, saying it’s senseless to let electric vehicles run on dirty energy. “That’s not enough, @G7. Disappointing outcome,” VW CEO Herbert Diess tweeted Tuesday. “We need to exit coal much... 

Congo picks Australia's Fortescue to develop giant hydro project

By: Reuters     15th June 2021 Democratic Republic of Congo's (DRC's) government said on Tuesday Fortescue Metals Group would develop the Grand Inga hydroelectric power project, including a 4,800-megawatt dam that has already been committed to Chinese and Spanish developers. Australia's Fortescue confirmed earlier on Tuesday... 

Congo picks Australia's Fortescue to develop giant hydro project
Andrew Forrest

Reinvestment in South Africa needed to ‘plant the seeds’ for a better future, says Exxaro 

By: Simone Liedtke     15th June 2021 Reinvestment is needed to “plant the seeds” and create a better future for South Africa, says diversified miner Exxaro Resources projects and technology executive head Johan Meyer. This is especially critical considering that Covid-19 has made it more challenging to secure investments, but also... 

Reinvestment in South Africa needed to ‘plant the seeds’ for a better future, says Exxaro

Globeleq starts building 19 MW solar plant in Cuamba, Mozambique

By: Marleny Arnoldi     14th June 2021 Independent power producer (IPP) Globeleq, together with State-owned utility Electricidade de Moçambique (EDM) and Source Energia, has started construction of a 19 MW solar photovoltaic plant, in Mozambique. The Cuamba solar plant also has a 2 MW storage system and will contribute to... 

Globeleq starts building 19 MW solar plant in Cuamba, Mozambique
Cuamba solar site, in Mozambique

Sudan says it is open to conditional interim deal on Ethiopian Renaissance Dam

By: Reuters     14th June 2021 Sudan is open to a partial interim agreement on Ethiopia's multibillion-dollar Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile, on specific conditions, Irrigation Minister Yasir Abbas told a news conference on Monday. The conditions include the signing-off of everything that has already been agreed on in... 

DNG seeks to interdict winners of South African power tender

By: Bloomberg     14th June 2021 A losing bidder in a South African tender for the provision of 2 000 MW of power is seeking to interdict the winners from completing their agreements. The application to South Africa’s High Court by DNG Energy threatens to halt the provision of electricity needed to ease recurrent outages in... 

Freeing up electricity generation could boost economic growth, says TIPS

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     14th June 2021 The latest economic data highlights that both economic growth and employment have not recovered to pre-Covid-19 levels; however, economic recovery should be boosted by government’s announcement to free up electricity generation, Trade and Industrial Policy Strategies’ (TIPS’s) first-quarter Real... 

Fluor repositions South African unit to support energy transition drive 

By: Terence Creamer     14th June 2021 Global engineering and construction company Fluor, which has been closely associated with South Africa’s liquid fuels and chemicals industries since the 1960s, has restructured its South African operations to align with the unfolding transitions under way in the energy and mining sectors. Fluor... 

Fluor repositions South African unit to support energy transition drive
Fluor South Africa GM Bill Langenbach

Infrastructure and import substitution at heart of new master plan’s vision for steel revival  

By: Terence Creamer     11th June 2021 A new master plan aimed at stabilising South Africa’s steel industry and creating a platform for the revival of the country’s embattled downstream steel fabricators was signed by representatives from business, labour and government on Friday. The ceremony, which took place amid the constant hum... 

Infrastructure and import substitution at heart of new master plan’s vision for steel revival
Trade, Industry and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel outlines the main pillars of the Steel Industry Master Plan at a signing ceremony held at Hall Longmore’s factory in Wadeville, in Gauteng. Camera Work: Kutlwano Matala. Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

University spinoff company develops energy, water efficiency solution for schools

By: Donna Slater     11th June 2021 Stellenbosch University (SU) spinoff company GreenX Engineering’s initiatives to help equip Cloetesville Primary School, in Stellenbosch, with energy-saving technology ensured that it became the first school in South Africa to receive an electrical performance certificate (EPC). The school... 

University spinoff company develops energy, water efficiency solution for schools
Cloetesville Primary School principal Rodger Cupido (pictured centre) receives the energy performance certificate, and is joined by Western Cape Education Department education planning DDG Salie Abrahams and SU COO professor Stan du Plessis.

DTIC says to resolve Atlantis SEZ challenges

By: Schalk Burger     11th June 2021 The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) has committed to resolving the challenges flagged by investors during a site visit to the Atlantis Special Economic Zone (SEZ), in the Western Cape, earlier this week, Deputy Minister Nomalungelo Gina says. Major challenges faced by... 

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