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Energy News

South Africa’s Astron ‘a nice short to have for the trading business’ – Glencore 

By: Martin Creamer     18th February 2020 Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg on Tuesday described his company’s investment in Astron Energy oil refinery and fuel distribution station business in South Africa as “a nice short to have for the trading business”. The Chevron oil refinery in Cape Town and the Caltex brand now fall under Astron... 

Mboweni moots referendum on rescuing State-owned companies on Twitter

By: African News Agency      17th February 2020 After a short hiatus from Twitter, Finance Minister Tito Mboweni is once again posting prolifically, using the platform at the weekend to call for a public debate, possibly a referendum, on the use of taxpayers' money to bail out failing State-owned enterprises. "We must develop a democratic... 

Mboweni moots referendum on rescuing State-owned companies on Twitter
Finance Minister Tito Mboweni

Bushveld sees battery storage potential beyond EVs  

By: Simone Liedtke     17th February 2020 While the energy transition is gaining a lot of traction, integrated primary vanadium producer Bushveld Minerals CEO Fortune Mojapelo laments that the battery storage narrative is “still dominated by electric vehicles (EVs)”. He tells Engineering News & Mining Weekly that there is still a lack of... 

Bushveld sees battery storage potential beyond EVs
Bushveld Minerals CEO Fortune Mojapelo chats to Engineering News & Mining Weekly about the energy transition, how vanadium plays a role in this as well as how this fits into the company's growth plans. Video: Creamer Media's Kutlwano Matlala. Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Arbitrator backs Woodside in Senegal tussle

By: Esmarie Iannucci     14th February 2020 The International Arbitration Court has backed oil and gas major Woodside in a dispute with fellow listed FAR. Woodside and FAR are joint venture (JV) partners in the Sangomar field development, offshore Senegal.  

Arbitrator backs Woodside in Senegal tussle

IEA sees first global oil demand drop in a decade on coronavirus

By: , Bloomberg     13th February 2020 Global oil demand will drop this quarter for the first time in over a decade as the coronavirus batters China’s economy, the International Energy Agency said. The new estimates show that oil markets face a significant surplus despite the latest production cuts by OPEC and its partners. Crude... 

GE’s gas power unit makes emergency-power submissions to DMRE 

By: Terence Creamer     13th February 2020 The newly created gas power unit of General Electric (GE) has confirmed that it has made both direct and indirect submissions to the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) in response to a request for information (RFI) issued in December for 3 000 MW of emergency electricity solutions... 

GE’s gas power unit makes emergency-power submissions to DMRE
An example of a GE trailer-mounted mobile gas-powered solution than can be deployed as an emergency solution

Total chief dismisses Tullow Oil takeover idea

By: Reuters     12th February 2020 Total chief Patrick Pouyanne dismissed the idea it might buy its partner in East Africa and Guyana, Tullow Oil, whose share price slumped to 19-year lows in December over a string of bad news, stoking takeover speculation. Total is a partner in all growth markets for Tullow Oil whose market... 

World emissions kept in check as rich nations kick coal habit

By: , Bloomberg     11th February 2020 Global emissions from energy held steady in 2019 for the first time in three years as developed nations continued to move away from coal power and toward renewable energy and natural gas. Even as the world economy grew, energy-related carbon dioxide emissions remained at 33.3-billion tons.... 

Nigeria's petroleum bill to be passed by mid-2020, says oil minister

By: Reuters     11th February 2020 Nigeria's oil ministry will send a new Petroleum Industry Bill to parliament next week, aiming to pass it into law by mid-2020, Minister of Petroleum Timipre Sylva said on Monday, hoping to end years of delay that have hampered investment. For nearly two decades, the bill has seen various... 

Astron’s Milnerton refinery meets deadline for producing very low-sulphur fuel oil

By: Marleny Arnoldi     10th February 2020 Energy company Astron Energy’s refinery has been successfully supplying ships in the ports of Cape Town and Richards Bay with low-sulphur fuel oil for the last month. The oil meets the stringent new International Maritime Organisation regulations, which had to be met by refineries globally by... 

Astron’s Milnerton refinery meets deadline for producing very low-sulphur fuel oil
Port of Cape Town

Oil hovers near $50 on signs Opec+ virus action not imminent

By: , Bloomberg     10th February 2020 Oil hovered around $50 a barrel on signs an extraordinary Opec+ meeting to decide on further production cuts to deal with the demand hit from the coronavirus is looking less likely. Ministers from the group and its allies are unlikely to hold an early meeting this month, while one planned for... 

Consortium makes Richards Bay gas-to-power proposal in response to DMRE’s call for emergency solutions  

By: Terence Creamer     7th February 2020 A black-empowered consortium that includes companies with extensive gas-to-power experience has made a formal submission to the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) in which plans for power generation plants capable of adding between 300 MW and 3 300 MW to South Africa’s grid within... 

Consortium makes Richards Bay gas-to-power proposal in response to DMRE’s call for emergency solutions
The proposed site of the Mhlathuze Energy project

Renergen’s Tetra4 inks LNG supply contract

By: Simone Liedtke     7th February 2020 Emerging domestic natural gas and helium producer Renergen’s subsidiary, Tetra4, has secured an agreement with Bulk Hauliers International Transport (BHIT) for the supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the Virginia gas project, in the Free State. The LNG will be used to fuel about 50 of... 

Mazars says Mboweni facing a daunting task as he prepares to deliver the 2020 Budget   

By: Simone Liedtke     4th February 2020 The upcoming National Budget is likely to be a “watershed moment” for South Africa, accounting and consulting group Mazars tax partner Bernard Sacks said on Tuesday. Speaking to media at a pre-Budget briefing, he said the Budget itself would, however, not be a “watershed Budget”. 

Mazars says Mboweni facing a daunting task as he prepares to deliver the 2020 Budget
The video looks at some of the highlights from Mazars tax partner Bernard Sacks' presentation during a panel discussion, giving media some insight into the South African economy and what to expect ahead of the National Budget later this month, while also briefly discussing what can potentially solve power utility Eskom’s challenges. Video: Creamer Media’s Kutlwano Matlala. Editing: Creamer Media’s Nicholas Boyd.

Turkey's Karpowership looks to plug South African power gap 

By: Reuters     4th February 2020 Turkey's Karpowership, one of the world's largest powership firms, has submitted a plan to South Africa to provide "several" ships capable of plugging a severe power shortage in the country, a senior company official said on Tuesday. South Africa's State-owned power utility Eskom has regularly... 

Eskom considering modifications to failure-prone Medupi conveyor system

By: Darren Parker     31st January 2020 Following three conveyor belt failures at the new Medupi power station, which contributed to load-shedding in December and January, State-owned electricity utility Eskom says several modifications to the conveyor system are being considered in an effort to ensure greater stability in future.... 

Eskom considering modifications to  failure-prone Medupi conveyor system
MODIFICATION ROLLOUT Modifications to the Medupi conveyor systems will also be applied at Kusile

Company increases footprint in Africa through distributorship

31st January 2020 Electro-mechanical power transmission supplier Vert Energy’s Leroy-Somer LSK direct current (DC) motors provide cost-effective solutions for variable speed applications.  

Company increases footprint in Africa through distributorship
EXCLUSIVE PICKS Vert Energy is the exclusive distributor for Leroy-Somer in Southern Africa

Indaba to shape Africa energy policies

By: Mc'Kyla Nortje     31st January 2020 The Africa Energy Indaba conference provides a yearly programme that shapes energy policies for the continent. The conference will take place this year from March 3 to 4 at the Sandton Convention Centre, in Johannesburg. 

Indaba to shape Africa energy policies
LIZ HART The Africa Energy Indaba 2020 will shed light on what is required of municipalities

Opec may meet sooner as coronavirus puts oil demand at risk

By: , Bloomberg     30th January 2020 The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) is considering pushing forward a meeting initially scheduled for March, according to Algeria’s energy minister, after oil prices slumped on concern that the spread of coronavirus would hurt oil demand. Mohamed Arkab said the producer... 

Numsa signs wage deal in motor retail, components sector

By: Schalk Burger     28th January 2020 The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa), which represents about 306 000 employees at automotive components companies, petrol stations and car dealerships, has signed a three-year wage agreement. Under the terms of the wage agreement, Numsa members employed by component... 

AA projects fall in fuel prices for February as global oil price declines

By: News24Wire      28th January 2020 The Automobile Association has said that global declines in the price of oil since the second week of 2019 will likely give South African motorists a breather for February. According to its projections, 95 Octane petrol will drop by around 13 cents a litre, 93 Octane petrol will drop by 4 cents... 

 AA projects fall in fuel prices for February as global oil price declines

Most commodity prices on the rise amid increasing demand, risk appetite

By: Marleny Arnoldi     27th January 2020 The past month has seen a rally in many parts of the commodities complex, owing to the signing of the first phase of a trade deal between China and the US boosting equity markets and risk appetites, states analytics and forecasting organisation Oxford Economics. In its latest commodity price... 

Most commodity prices on the rise amid increasing demand, risk appetite

Sasol to list on A2X

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     27th January 2020 South African energy and chemicals group Sasol has been approved for a secondary listing on South African stock exchange, A2X Markets, on February 3. The company retains its listings on the JSE and the NYSE. 

EV pilot programme can help Rwanda go green

By: Cameron Mackay     24th January 2020 Electric mobility through electric vehicles (EVs) in Rwanda can help the country in its efforts to go green, says Volkswagen South Africa (VWSA) CEO Thomas Schäfer.  This comes after Volkswagen launched a pilot project in the country in October last year, where it introduced its first EV in Africa. 

EV pilot programme can help Rwanda go green
Photo by Creamer Media
THOMAS SCHÄFER Africa will develop in many ways with cooperation. We need to learn to work together across the continent, find shared value, and ways of collaborating

Angola closes in on Africa’s richest woman with Sonangol inquiry

By: , Bloomberg     23rd January 2020 Isabel dos Santos has been named as a suspect in an investigation over alleged mismanagement during her time as chairwoman of Sonangol, Angola’s State oil company, a position she was appointed to by her father, ex-President Jose Eduardo dos Santos. Four others were also named on state TV late... 

Uganda says refinery investor group nearing final decision

By: , Bloomberg     22nd January 2020 The General Electric-led group picked to build a $3.5-billion refinery in Uganda is close to making a final investment decision for the project, according to the country’s Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development. The decision requires the start of work on the infrastructure connected to the... 

Globeleq’s Azito plant reaches financial close for 253 MW expansion

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     22nd January 2020 Independent power producer Globeleq and IPS, a company owned by the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development, have announced that their subsidiary, Azito Energie, has reached financial close on the 253 MW expansion of the existing Azito gas-fired power plant near Abidjan, in Côte d’Ivoire. The... 

Globeleq’s Azito plant reaches financial close for 253 MW expansion
Azito

BP, Angola agree deal to explore oil offshore

By: Reuters     22nd January 2020 BP signed an agreement with Angola aimed at acquiring oil further exploration rights, state news agency Angop reported, the latest in a flurry of agreements between oil majors and Africa's second biggest exporter. The deal with country's petroleum regulator ANPG defines the terms for a... 

PetroSA appoints new CEO

By: Creamer Media Reporter      22nd January 2020 Pragasen Naidoo has been appointed CEO of national oil company PetroSA. His appointment is effective from January 17, subject to a transitional arrangement with the Central Energy Fund (CEF), a holding company of PetroSA. 

Children across South Africa learn about renewables in vernacular

By: Simone Liedtke     21st January 2020 English, Afrikaans, Xhosa and Setswana speaking children across South Africa are learning about the role that wind power is playing as the world transitions to renewable power for a cleaner, healthier planet through a beautifully illustrated story book, named Let the Wind Blow. The South African... 

Children across South Africa learn about renewables in vernacular

Virginia project’s appraisal programme to spud ahead of schedule – Renergen

By: Simone Liedtke     21st January 2020 Emerging domestic natural gas and helium producer Renergen expects the appraisal programme for its Virginia gas project, in the Free State, to spud ahead of schedule during the first week of February. The dual-listed company also advised that the first planned incline in Phase 1’s development had... 

Virginia project’s appraisal programme to spud ahead of schedule – Renergen
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
The drill site at Renergen's Virginia gas project

Index shows policy uncertainty remains elevated

By: Simone Liedtke     20th January 2020 The Policy Uncertainty Index (PUI), as published by the North West University (NWU) Business School, increased to 53.6 index points in the fourth quarter of 2019, from 53.1 index points in the third quarter. The business school points out that “negative factors outweighed positive ones” in the... 

Ncondezi on track to submit tariff submission

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     17th January 2020 Aim-listed Ncondezi Energy is on track to submit a tariff financial model for its integrated 300 MW coal-fired power project and coal mine in Tete, Mozambique, to strategic partners at the end of this month. The company is targeting a competitive tariff rate in line with tariff rates recently... 

Demand increasing for boiler cleaning

By: Cameron Mackay     17th January 2020 There has been a signifiscant increase in demand for industrial and chemical cleaning solutions provider Gra-Tech’s chemical cleaning of package boilers, as industries in which package boilers are used are looking to optimise operational efficiencies and reduce costs. Package boilers are smaller... 

Demand increasing for boiler cleaning
SQUEAKY CLEAN Preoperational cleaning of boilers before commissioning require a 1% hydrofluoric acid solution to remove most mill scale and fabrication defects

Boiler leak-detection equipment ideal for power generation

By: Cameron Mackay     17th January 2020 Power generation facilities can benefit from using turnkey solutions provider Procon Engineering’s boiler tube leak-detection to avoid unplanned shutdowns, says industrial and processing solutions provider RTS Africa Technologies MD Ian Fraser. “This equipment provides a continuous diagnostic... 

Boiler leak-detection equipment ideal for power generation
KEEPING THE LIGHTS ON The Procon boiler tube leak-detection system can eliminate unplanned shutdowns caused by boiler tube leaks

Company to offer carbon tax consulting

By: Cameron Mackay     17th January 2020 Boiler and burner solutions provider Steam Generation is set to introduce Carbon Tax consulting services for its customers to add to its boiler financing services. This comes after the Carbon Tax Act was introduced in South Africa in June last year, which affects energy-intensive industrial... 

Company to offer carbon tax consulting
BOILER EFFICIENCY FOCUS Hlophe notes an increase in customers using coal-fired boilers that require automation to assist in monitoring and realising boiler efficiency, at a reasonable cost

Total plans world’s deepest offshore well to stem Angola decline

By: , Bloomberg     16th January 2020 Total will drill the world’s deepest offshore well in Angola, in waters more than two miles deep, as the African country works to reverse years of declining output. The well in Block 48 will be 228 m deeper than Total’s Raya-1 well in Uruguay, completed in 2016, according to contractor Maersk... 

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