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Infrastructure News

Phase 1 digital service delivery platform launched in Johannesburg, Cape Town

By: Schalk Burger     21st July 2021 The first phase of the free-to-use My Smart City service delivery platform, which allows citizens to report potholes, monitor power or water outages and communicate with local municipal officials, besides other activities, has been launched in Johannesburg and Cape Town. “My Smart City is giving... 

100-MW reform set to spur rapid increase in larger-scale solar projects – SAPVIA 

By: Terence Creamer     21st July 2021 The South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (SAPVIA) is optimistic that the decision to increase the licence-exemption threshold for distributed-generation facilities from 1 MW to 100 MW will support a rapid increase in the deployment of larger-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) projects, with... 

A head shot of SAPVIA spokesperson Maloba Tshehla
SAPVIA spokesperson Maloba Tshehla

SARB cautions against stained banknotes after unrest

By: Sane Dhlamini     21st July 2021 Following recent looting and acts of lawlessness that caused unrest in the country, the South African Reserve Bank has cautioned the public not to accept stained banknotes, stating that these notes are considered as proceeds of crime. Last week, protests against former President Jacob Zuma’s... 

South African currency

Western Cape making progress on pioneering municipal power projects 

By: Terence Creamer     21st July 2021 The Western Cape provincial government is currently evaluating responses to a request for information (RFI) issued by the Department of Economic Development and Tourism to assess the potential for renewable-energy projects in six municipalities included as part of its Municipal Energy Resilience... 

Image of solar rooftops with a Cape mountain in the background

Kumba breaks ground on lifestyle complex in Postmasburg  

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     20th July 2021 Anglo American group subsidiary Kumba Iron Ore’s Kolomela mine has broken ground on a multipurpose lifestyle complex in the small Northern Cape town of Postmasburg, which the company says will transform the lives of the Tsantsabane community. The 16 ha complex will provide a range of sporting,... 

An artist's drawing of the multipurpose lifestyle complex in the small Northern Cape town of Postmasburg
Artist drawing of the complex

Carbon emissions to reach record levels in 2023 as stimulus spending fails to match net-zero ambition  

By: Terence Creamer     20th July 2021 The financial resources allocated by governments globally to clean-energy measures in response to the Covid-19 crisis currently represents only 2% of the $16-trillion in total fiscal support set aside for economic stimulus, the International Energy Agency’s (IEA’s) new Sustainable Recovery... 

Photo of IEA executive director Fatih Birol
IEA executive director Fatih Birol

Ethiopia says second filling of giant dam on Blue Nile complete

By: Reuters     20th July 2021 Ethiopia has completed filling the reservoir of its huge dam on the Blue Nile river for a second year and the plant may start generating power in the next few months, a minister said on Monday, a move that has already angered Egypt and Sudan. Addis Ababa says the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam... 

Construction can emerge stronger, but needs new business models - Aspasa

By: Schalk Burger     19th July 2021 The construction industry can emerge stronger after Covid-19, but new business models will need to be developed to keep the industry and the country afloat in the medium- and long-term, says surface mining industry association Aggregate and Sand Producers Association of Southern Africa (Aspasa)... 

Opinion: The smart road to prosperity

16th July 2021 In this opinion article, South African National Roads Agency head of engineering Louw Kannemeyer argues that smart transport, cities and infrastructure are intertwined in road construction. 

An image of a national road under management of the South African National Roads Agency

Transnet operations gradually returning to normal following unrest

By: Yvonne Silaule     16th July 2021 There has been an incremental improvement in the operations of State-owned logistics company Transnet, following disruptions caused by days of unrest in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng. As a result of the unrest, port operator Transnet Port Terminals had issued force majeure notices with regard to the... 

An image of the Port of Durban

SIDS fast-tracks infrastructure- boosting projects

16th July 2021 As part of the Sustainable Infrastructure Development System (SIDS) methodology launched last year, the government announced 50 projects, along with 12 special projects, that the methodology has already been applied to. These projects were fast-tracked for implementation along with all regulatory... 

INTERCHANGE Transport sector has 15 SIDS projects across the country
INTERCHANGE Transport sector has 15 SIDS projects across the country

Draft mandate clarifies TWG’s directive

By: Nadine Ramdass     16th July 2021 The mandate document submitted by the agricultural and agroprocessing sector’s Technical Working Group (TWG), clarifies the core mandates of the sector’s group. This is in line with the Sustainable Infrastructure Development System (SIDS) objectives of facilitating sustainable development. The... 

LAUNCH OF GRAIN EXPORT
Long-term sector growth can increase exports
LAUNCH OF GRAIN EXPORT Long-term sector growth can increase exports

Methodology pertinent to economic growth

By: Nadine Ramdass     16th July 2021 The Sustainable Infrastructure Development System (SIDS) project methodology is important for development in South Africa because the country cannot afford to fund projects that do not have a good return, particularly from an economic and/or a social perspective, says Consulting Engineers South... 

CHRIS CAMPBELL
SIDS can have great impact if used correctly and efficiently
CHRIS CAMPBELL SIDS can have great impact if used correctly and efficiently

Regulatory compliance key to driving sustainability

16th July 2021 For South Africa to work toward economic recovery, it will be necessary for organisations to re-prioritise compliance to ensure both economic and environmental sustainability in the long term, says economic development agency Economic Development Solutions (EDM) MD Janine Espin. In the past year,... 

JANINE ESPIN
Organisations should seek the guidance of compliance specialists
JANINE ESPIN Organisations should seek the guidance of compliance specialists

SIDS sparks private sector interest

By: Nadine Ramdass     16th July 2021 The launch of the Sustainable Infrastructure Development System (SIDS) programme, as well as the roll-out of the projects already approved within the system, has sparked renewed, albeit cautious, optimism from private-sector investors who are keen to participate in infrastructure development,... 

MATHIEU DU PLOOY
Approved projects encourage private sector optimism
MATHIEU DU PLOOY Approved projects encourage private sector optimism

Opinion: Inclusive process now vital to define a collective electricity industry vision

15th July 2021 In this opinion article, Energy Intensive User Group CEO Fanele Mondi says that, although reforms allowing for higher levels of own generation will make a significant difference, there is also an urgent need for South Africans to collectively shape the future of the electricity supply industry... 

An image of Fanele Mondi, the CEO of the Energy Intensive User Group

New initiative launched to raise awareness on key role of power grids in Africa 

By: Terence Creamer     15th July 2021 The RES4Africa Foundation, an Italian non-profit organisation that promotes the development of renewable energy on the continent, has launched a Grids4Africa initiative to support the development of the transmission and distribution networks needed to raise levels of renewables deployment and... 

An image of power lines

Zikalala estimates damage to infrastructure is at least R3bn

By: Yvonne Silaule     15th July 2021 KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala estimates that more than R3-billion of infrastructure has been damaged so far in the province, as looting and protests continue. Warehouses and shopping centres, in particular, have been affected, with the hardest hit areas being the districts of Msunduzi and... 

AfDB sustainable energy fund secures $90m in new funding

By: Schalk Burger     15th July 2021 The Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (Sefa), managed by development finance institution the African Development Bank (AfDB), approved seven high-impact projects worth $54-million in 2020, the fund's 2020 Annual Report shows. The fund also attracted increased donor funding and secured... 

Nedbank leverages additional tier one instruments to help drive a net-zero economy

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     14th July 2021 To strategically finance the transition to a net-zero economy, financial services provider Nedbank has once again approached the investment market to raise ‘use-of-proceeds’ green finance, this time through the issuance of the first listed green additional tier one instrument by a financial... 

Consortium unveils plans for zero-emission Eastern Cape e-methanol plant 

By: Terence Creamer     14th July 2021 An agreement for the development of a greenfield facility in Humansdorp, in the Eastern Cape, to manufacture zero-carbon e-methanol for sale locally and for export has been concluded by a consortium comprising Earth and Wire, ENERTRAG South Africa and 24Solutions. The proposed facility will... 

Image of an ENERTRAG green hydrogen facility in Germany
An ENERTRAG green hydrogen facility in Germany

Steel giant to harness green hydrogen, renewables to produce zero-carbon steel

By: Terence Creamer     14th July 2021 Steel group ArcelorMittal has signed an undertaking with the Spanish government in support of a €1-billion plan to construct a green hydrogen direct reduced iron (DRI) plant and a new hybrid electric arc furnace (EAF) at its facility in Gijón, in Asturias, as part of a pioneering move to... 

An image of flat steel being rolled

Afreximbank and ACBF sign collaboration agreement to build development capacity

By: Donna Slater     13th July 2021 The Africa Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) and the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) have signed an agreement to support capacity development initiatives over a period of five years, ending in 2025. The agreement, signed by Afreximbank president Professor Benedict Oramah and ACBF... 

N4 Kaapmuiden to Kaalrug project almost complete, says TRAC  

By: Irma Venter     13th July 2021 Trans African Concessions (TRAC) expects to complete the major upgrade between Kaapmuiden and Kaalrug, in the Nkomazi region, on the N4 Toll Route, by October.  The toll road concessionaire says the 15.5 km road project is more than 75% complete. 

Road construction along the N4

Shell expresses concern over RMIPPPP delays as it confirms Karpowership SA partnership  

By: Terence Creamer     13th July 2021 Shell South Africa country chairperson Hloniphizwe Mtolo has confirmed that the energy group is the exclusive supplier of liquified natural gas (LNG) to Karpowership SA, whose three projects, totalling 1 220 MW, were named in March as preferred bidders under government’s Risk Mitigation... 

Photo of Shell South Africa country chairperson Hloniphizwe Mtolo
Shell South Africa country chairperson Hloniphizwe Mtolo

CIDB closes Durban offices after vandalism damage

By: Schalk Burger     12th July 2021 National construction industry body the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) on July 12 said it had closed its office in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, after it suffered extensive damage owing to vandalism during weekend protests, violence and looting. The CIDB asked contractors to make use of... 

Despite tailwinds, South Africa’s recovery could fade into ‘another lost decade’ without reforms 

By: Terence Creamer     12th July 2021 The World Bank expects South Africa to grow by 4% in 2021, supported by the strong global economic recovery from Covid and favourable commodity prices. However, the bank also warns that the medium-term outlook remains uncertain and will depend largely on whether the country is able to implement... 

Image of large mining vehicles at an iron-ore mine
Commodity prices supporting South Africa rebound

Botswana woos Chinese investors as lenders shun coal projects

By: Bloomberg     12th July 2021 At a time when funding for fossil fuel projects is drying up, Botswana is racing to develop six new coal mines and a rail link for exports, with the government prepared to put its own money into the projects. The southern African nation, the world’s second-biggest diamond producer, has more than... 

Giant dam is messing up water in Africa even before it is filled

By: Bloomberg     9th July 2021 As Ethiopia begins diverting 13.5-billion cubic meters of water from the Blue Nile river to its controversial new megadam, residents of Sudan to the south fear a repetition of last year’s devastating drought. The second stage of filling the $4.5-billion reservoir is ratcheting up tensions between... 

Tolcon given green light to roll out new Gauteng, WCape freeway management systems  

By: Irma Venter     9th July 2021 Transport infrastructure management company Tolcon has been given the go-ahead to continue with two freeway management system contracts totalling R1.7-billion, awarded by the South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) in 2020, but delayed by court action from disgruntled competing... 

Tolcon given green light to roll out new Gauteng, WCape freeway management systems

Drone and NDT firm join forces

By: Halima Frost     9th July 2021 Materials testing and inspection service provider Dekra Industrial has joined forces with aerial solutions and drone services company Sky Africa Drones to offer a drone inspection service that combines the technologies of high scope non-destructive testing (NDT) systems with the manoeuvrability... 

SKY HIGH
The use of drones to conduct non-destructive testing on taller installations and hard to reach areas is even more possible
SKY HIGH The use of drones to conduct non-destructive testing on taller installations and hard to reach areas is even more possible

Tilt meters to tilt favourably in project’s way

By: Halima Frost     9th July 2021 Geotechnical service provider Terra Monitoring has been selected to assist in supplying and installing eight Geosense micro electromechanical systems (Mems) in-place tilt meters for a project in Zambia. The meters will be used to monitor changes in the inclination of a grain silo construction... 

INCLINED TO WORK
The Mems tilt meters being used in the silo construction project will monitor if any inclination does occur
INCLINED TO WORK The Mems tilt meters being used in the silo construction project will monitor if any inclination does occur

Luthando Vutula to succeed Dr Snowy Khoza as Bigen CEO

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     8th July 2021 Infrastructure development group Bigen has appointed Luthando Vutula, previously the CEO of Ubank, to succeed Dr Snowy Khoza, as of October 1. Khoza will be retiring from the group in December. 

Image of Luthando Vutula, previously the CEO of Ubank
Luthando Vutula

Mantashe 'grapples' with difference between a permit and licence as 100-MW reform drafting nears completion  

By: Terence Creamer     7th July 2021 Mineral Resource and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe says that a revised amendment to Schedule 2 of the Electricity Regulation Act, reflecting an increase in the licence-exemption cap from 1 MW to 100 MW, will be finalised within the coming week and will be shared with The Presidency “so that we... 

Photograph of Mineral Resource and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe
Mineral Resource and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe

Digital transformation to help grow construction sector's financial returns, value

By: Schalk Burger     7th July 2021 The digital transformation of the construction sector involves the integration of the physical and virtual processes and workflows, and will provide between 12% and 16% cost savings over the lifespan of a project, as well as potentially doubling the margins companies are able to achieve. The... 

UN urges Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan to recommit to dam talks

By: Reuters     7th July 2021 The United Nations called on Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt on Tuesday to recommit to talks on the operation of a giant hydropower dam, urging them to avoid any unilateral action, a day after Ethiopia began filling the dam's reservoir. The UN Security Council will likely discuss the Grand Ethiopian... 

Egypt notified that Ethiopia has resumed filling of giant dam

By: Reuters     6th July 2021 Egypt's irrigation minister said on Monday he had received official notice from Ethiopia that it had begun filling the reservoir behind its giant hydropower dam, the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), for a second year. Egypt has informed Ethiopia of its categorical rejection of the measure,... 

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