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Electricity News

Eskom denies Joburg ANC claim that city will take over power supply  

By: News24Wire      8th October 2021 Eskom has refuted a statement issued by the African National Congress’s Greater Johannesburg Region branch over an apparent power-purchase agreement between the city and the state-owned power utility. In Friday's statement, the ANC said Mayor Mpho Moerane had signed an agreement that will allow... 

Wind industry to approach DMRE with pitch for unlocking domestic value-chains from $8bn roll-out 

By: Terence Creamer     8th October 2021 The domestic wind industry plans to approach the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) with a series of recommendations for boosting local content and direct South African involvement in the deployment of 4 300 MW of new wind capacity over the coming three years. The proposals focus... 

Photo of a blade being attached to a wind rotor
Domestic supply chain to be stretched as some 800 turbines are manufactured, transported, and installed over the coming three years

Alarming chunk of Eskom capacity is down as load-shedding hits again

By: News24Wire      8th October 2021 Load-shedding is back, and with a large chunk of Eskom's capacity down, the country's power supply is under a severe strain. On Thursday, after 77 days without load-shedding, Eskom announced that it would resume stage 2, as breakdowns amounted to 14 982 MW, while planned maintenance is 5 334 MW... 


Hybrid energy systems key for country’s energy mix, experts posit

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     8th October 2021 As South Africa continues on its journey to a greener economy, energy experts who gathered at this year’s Windaba conference, in Cape Town, predict that the country’s future energy mix is likely to include dispatchable power, in the form of hybrid systems. This follows the Department of Mineral... 

De Ruyter reiterates Eskom’s need to adapt to the changing energy landscape

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th October 2021 Eskom CEO André de Ruyter says there are significant efficiency gains to be made by embracing digitalisation at the State-owned power utility. Speaking during the second day of the Joburg Indaba on October 7, he unpacked the changing energy provider landscape in South Africa.  

Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

Ramaphosa supports green hydrogen export ambitions  

8th October 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about President Cyril Ramaphosa throwing his weight behind South Africa’s green hydrogen export ambitions and encouraging South Africa to embrace green energy and decarbonisation. 

Photo of Terence Creamer
Ramaphosa supports green hydrogen export ambitions

Pump systems optimised through energy-saving assessments

By: Theresa Bhowan-Rajah     8th October 2021 With international studies showing that pump systems account for more than 20% of global electrical energy demand, the National Cleaner Production Centre South Africa (NCPC-SA) has worked with more than 450 companies during the past decade, under its flagship Industrial Energy Efficiency Project.... 

Hydro project set to boost green credentials of giant DRC copper complex

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th October 2021 While Kamoa Copper, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), is on track to become the second-largest copper mining complex globally, and the biggest in Africa, it is also poised to be among the greenest of copper mines. This is largely on the back of the project being completely powered by... 

Magazine cover image

Eskom to implement power cuts to replenish reserves

By: Reuters     7th October 2021 South Africa's struggling state power utility Eskom said it would implement scheduled power cuts from Thursday evening to replenish emergency generation reserves. The "stage 2" power cuts, which requires up to 2,000 megawatts of capacity to be shed from the national grid, will be implemented from... 

PCC’s Olver sees updating IRP to exclude new coal as key policy priority

By: Terence Creamer     7th October 2021 Presidential Climate Commission (PCC) executive director Dr Crispian Olver says updating South Africa’s energy policy to exclude any new coal capacity to 2030 and beyond, while increasing the allocation for renewable energy to at least 30 GW by the end of the decade should be key priorities for... 

Presidential Climate Commission executive director Dr Crispian Olver
Presidential Climate Commission executive director Dr Crispian Olver

Ramaphosa moots possible hydrogen partnership with Namibia as he punts Boegoebaai export hub 

By: Terence Creamer     7th October 2021 President Cyril Ramaphosa says South Africa stands ready to be a major exporter of green hydrogen and has described the special economic zone (SEZ) proposed for development at Boegoebaai, in the Northern Cape, as a major step towards realising the country’s potential to be a global leader in... 

President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Tesla's gigafactory electrifies California-Germany culture clash

By: Reuters     7th October 2021 With final approval for its German factory potentially just weeks away, Tesla's Elon Musk will make an appearance in the tiny town of Gruenheide this Saturday to host a county fair. Despite pandemic-related curbs limiting gatherings in Germany to under 5 000 people, Tesla applied for - and got -... 

A photo of the Tesla logo

Eskom calls on public to reduce energy use  

By: Creamer Media Reporter      7th October 2021 Power utility Eskom is calling on the public to reduce electricity use, as the system is under pressure owing to a number of generating unit breakdowns. Total breakdowns amount to 14 925 MW, while planned maintenance is 4 759 MW of capacity. Should there be any further breakdowns, Eskom might be... 

South Africa should not rush move away from coal, minister says

By: Reuters     7th October 2021 South Africa must manage its transition away from coal-fired power generation systematically and not rush a switch to renewable energy sources, Mining and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe said on Thursday. "I am not saying coal for ever, ... I am saying let's manage our transition step by step... 

Mining and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe
Mining and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe

Mature local wind energy industry ready to deliver 14.4 GW of capacity over the next decade 

By: Schalk Burger     7th October 2021 The tenth yearly wind industry conference Windaba, which opened on October 7, marks a decade of wind power in South Africa and the industry has matured to the point that it is ready and able to build an additional 14.4 GW of wind power capacity over the next decade, says industry organisation... 

A photo of Mercia Grimbeek, chairperson of SAWEA
SAWEA chairperson Mercia Grimbeek

Thyssenkrupp, Wismut to study potential to repurpose old South African gold mines for energy storage 

By: Simone Liedtke     6th October 2021 Diversified industrial group Thyssenkrupp Uhde South Africa and German uranium mining company Wismut have been appointed to execute a prefeasibility study for a renewable underground pumped hydroelectric energy storage (Ruphes) project on a specific but undisclosed site owned by a South African... 

Pele Green-EDF SA consortium to build 100 MW solar PV plant at Mogalakwena 

By: Schalk Burger     6th October 2021 JSE-listed platinum-group metals (PGMs) miner Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) has selected the Pele Green Energy – EDF Renewables South Africa consortium as the preferred supplier to build a 100 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) plant at its Mogalakwena mine, in Limpopo. Pele Green Energy develops,... 

An image of a solar PV installation

NUM gets behind Cosatu strike on October 7

By: Marleny Arnoldi     6th October 2021 The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) has decided to join the October 7 national strike launched by Congress of South African Trade Union (Cosatu). The NUM has, therefore, issued a call to its members in the mining, energy construction and metals sectors to join planned activities across the... 

De Ruyter says 'substantial' concessional finance available to support just energy transition 

By: Terence Creamer     5th October 2021 Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter said on Tuesday that the message of the climate envoys who visited South Africa in the run up to the COP26 climate talks in Scotland was that there is “substantial concessional financing available” to enable South Africa to pursue a just energy transition. He indicated,... 

Photo of Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

WindAc Africa 2021 kicks off after two-year hiatus

By: Donna Slater     5th October 2021 The South African Wind Energy Association (SAWEA) held its fourth industry academic conference – WindAc Africa 2021 – on October 5, with a keynote address delivered by Danish Energy Agency (DEA) director-general Kristoffer Böttzauw. The DEA is a SAWEA strategic partner and a keen supporter of... 

An image of Participants at WindAc Africa 2021
Participants at WindAc Africa 2021

Eskom is now world’s biggest sulphur dioxide emitter, CREA says 

By: Bloomberg     5th October 2021 Eskom Holdings, South Africa’s coal-reliant power utility, has become the world’s biggest emitter of sulphur dioxide, a pollutant linked to ailments ranging from asthma to heart attacks, the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA) said. Eskom produced 1 600 kilotons of the pollutant in... 

Eskom Coal Fired Power station

China's CMOC eyes solar and hydro for Congo copper/cobalt expansion

By: Reuters     5th October 2021 China Molybdenum Co (CMOC) is looking to tap more hydropower projects and potentially use solar energy as it expands its production of copper and cobalt in Democratic Republic of Congo, its vice-chairperson said. Steele Li, who is also chief investment officer at CMOC , said the company was... 

Full-scale mock-up of and advanced small modular nuclear reactor unveiled in the UK

By: Rebecca Campbell     4th October 2021 Two nuclear technology companies, the Anglo-Dutch U-Battery and the UK’s Cavendish Nuclear, have unveiled a full-scale mock-up of U-Battery’s advanced modular reactor (AMR) design. The mock-up includes the reactor vessel, the intermediate heat exchanger vessel, and the connecting duct (which is... 

COP26 must unlock climate support from developed to developing countries – Creecy 

By: Terence Creamer     4th October 2021 South Africa’s Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy says the COP26 climate talks scheduled for Glasgow, Scotland, in November need to prioritise the securing of finance, technology and capacity building support from developed to developing countries. Addressing a... 

 	Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy

Wind Atlas South Africa project offers freely available wind resource modelling methods, data and tools

By: Schalk Burger     4th October 2021 The third phase of the Wind Atlas South Africa (Wasa 3) project has developed free-to-use wind resource estimation methods, data and tools that private and public organisations can use to inform decisions and policies. These can also be shared with the rest of Africa and the world to support wind... 

BIC manufacturing plant goes green four years ahead of schedule

By: Simone Liedtke     4th October 2021 Stationary manufacturer BIC South Africa has declared that 100% of its electricity use at its Johannesburg-based stationery manufacturing plant is now green. The announcement comes four years ahead of schedule and is a first for BIC factories on the African continent. 

Pic of BIC Manufacturing Plant in Johannesburg, South Africa

IEA implores countries to help lower the production cost of hydrogen

By: Donna Slater     4th October 2021 The International Energy Agency (IEA) reports in its ‘Global Hydrogen Review 2021’ report, released on October 4, that although investment is increasing in hydrogen projects to support a clean energy transition, further efforts are needed to reduce costs and encourage wider use across sectors.... 

Eskom says Nersa’s MYPD5 rejection creates ‘regulatory vacuum’ 

By: Terence Creamer     1st October 2021 State-owned utility Eskom says the rejection, by the Energy Regulator, of its latest allowable-revenue application has created a regulatory vacuum for the electricity supply industry. “Eskom is accordingly considering how to proceed, and is taking advice on its position following the National... 

Eskom branding on a board outside Megawattpark

US envoy says grants and concessional loans will be needed to support South Africa’s ‘ambitious’ energy transition 

By: Terence Creamer     1st October 2021 US Deputy Special Envoy for Climate Dr Jonathan Pershing has described South Africa’s latest climate pledge as “extraordinary” and says the US and other donor countries will seek to support South Africa’s ambition to transition to a decarbonised economy “by the middle of this century” with... 

US Deputy Special Envoy for Climate Dr Jonathan Pershing during a Zoom briefing on Friday
US Deputy Special Envoy for Climate Dr Jonathan Pershing during a Zoom briefing on Friday

UK becomes first country to publish proposals for the regulation of nuclear fusion power

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st October 2021 The UK government has released regulatory consultation proposals for the regulation of future nuclear fusion technology and power plant design, development, construction and operation. These were contained in a document called the Fusion Green Paper, which was published on Friday. The public and... 

BP, Eni seek to raise $2 billion for Angola joint venture

By: Reuters     1st October 2021 BP and Eni are seeking to raise up to $2-billion for their emerging oil and gas joint venture in Angola as both firms attempt to reduce their own debt to help build up renewables businesses, banking and industry sources said. BP and Eni announced in May that they had entered into talks to merge... 

Fossil fuel firms investing in Africa face 'risk of regulatory action' - US climate envoy

By: Reuters     1st October 2021 Western fossil fuel companies investing in Africa face a significant risk of regulatory action that's getting more explicit as the world moves to try to tackle dangerous climate change, a US climate envoy said on Friday. During a virtual media briefing while in South Africa as part of a... 

Zimbabwe okays export of 200 000 t of excess power coal

By: Reuters     1st October 2021 Zimbabwe has allowed the export of 200 000 t of excess power coal because of limited intake at its biggest coal-fired power plant, which is beset by frequent breakdowns, the coal producers association said on Friday. The Southern African nation's six coal miners have a standing arrangement to... 

Implications of Eskom's rejected revenue application unpacked   

1st October 2021 The Energy Regulator has rejected Eskom’s latest revenue application for the three-year tariff cycle starting in 2022 and has proposed that it be submitted again under a new methodology. Engineering News editor Terence Creamer unpacks the development and its implications.   

Photo of Terence Creamer
Implications of Eskom's rejected revenue application unpacked

Solar hybrid system at Fekola mine exceeding expectations

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     1st October 2021 Following the commissioning of the world’s largest off-grid solar-battery hybrid system for the mining industry, at the Fekola gold mine, in Mali, expectations to reduce the mine’s heavy fuel oil consumption by over 13-million litres a year and to lower carbon dioxide emissions by an estimated 39... 

An image showing the solar hybrid system at the Fekola gold mine in Mali
Solar hybrid system

IFC, Sodigaz partner to boost access to cleaner energy solutions in Burkina Faso

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     1st October 2021 World Bank Group member the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Burkina Faso energy company Sodigaz have entered into an agreement to boost access to cleaner energy solutions for thousands of households and businesses in Burkina Faso. Under the agreement, the IFC’s advisory services team... 

RMIPPPP preferred bidder confirms delay to end-Jan 

By: Terence Creamer     1st October 2021 One of the preferred bidders participating in South Africa’s Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (RMIPPPP) has confirmed that government has delayed the deadline of financial close to end of January. The delay was foreseen, but not confirmed by September 30, which was... 

Mineral Resources & Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe
Photo by Creamer Media Chief Photographer Donna Slater
Mineral Resources & Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe named the initial eight RMIPPPP preferred bidders on March 18
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