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Infrastructure News

Local company involved in Malawi railway link

26th June 2020 This year, environmental consulting engineers JG Afrika completed hydrological, topographical, sedimentation and climate studies to assist the Malawian government in rebuilding railway infrastructure. This was done in an area of the country that is prone to devastating floods.  

Eskom’s new just energy transition office assessing green finance options for repurposing of old coal stations

By: Terence Creamer     25th June 2020 Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter reports that the State-owned utility’s newly created just energy transition (JET) project office is evaluating green financing options that could help accelerate the deployment of renewables and facilitate the repurposing of its older coal plants in ways that improves... 

Eskom’s new just energy transition office assessing green finance options for repurposing of old coal stations
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

SA puts infrastructure at centre of recovery plan 

25th June 2020 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about President Cyril Ramaphosa's announcement that infrastructure will be put at the centre of South Africa's pandemic recovery plan and what is needed to ensure that an infrastructure-led recovery takes place. 

SA puts infrastructure at centre of recovery plan
SA puts infrastructure at centre of recovery plan

Civil Confidence Index records all time low in second quarter

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     25th June 2020 The FNB/BER Civil Confidence Index fell to an all-time low of five in the second quarter, as a result of the sharp decline in activity, with many firms having been closed in April and May.  The current index level means that the overwhelming majority (95%) of respondents are dissatisfied with... 

MBA North welcomes infrastructure strategy, but warns that implementation is key 

By: Irma Venter     25th June 2020 The Master Builders Association (MBA) North has broadly welcomed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s vision of infrastructure spending as the flywheel of South Africa’s recovery from the Covid-19 crisis.  Speaking at the inaugural Sustainable Infrastructure Development Symposium South Africa held on June... 

MBA North welcomes infrastructure strategy, but warns that implementation is key

Icon Group developing a new filling station along M2 highway

By: Simone Liedtke     24th June 2020 Civil engineering and construction services provider Icon Group was awarded a contract to develop a new filling station along the M2 Johannesburg highway, in Kensington. Located between the Chilvers street and Cleveland road offramps, the new development will provide motorists with a refueling... 

Icon Group developing a new filling station along M2 highway
The construction site along the M2 Johannesburg highway, in Kensington

3D printed wind turbines to improve access to, cost of renewable energy

By: Simone Liedtke     24th June 2020 GE Renewable Energy, three-dimensional (3D) construction printing company Cobod and building materials and solutions provider LafargeHolcim have partnered to co-develop wind turbines with optimised 3D printing concrete bases and which reach record heights of up to 200 m. The three partners will... 

South Africa its own biggest enemy in infrastructure roll-out 

By: Irma Venter     24th June 2020 South Africa keeps on tripping itself up when it comes to infrastructure project development and implementation, says New Development Bank (NDB) Africa regional office director-general Monale Ratsoma. The NDB is a multilateral development bank established by the Brics States, namely Brazil,... 

South Africa its own biggest enemy in infrastructure roll-out

Infrastructure key to agriculture's future

By: Marleny Arnoldi     23rd June 2020 For agriculture to become a greater contributor to the economy and to better ensure food security, industry experts agree that the country needs investment into infrastructure and this, in turn, needs a targeted approach. Speaking during a session at the inaugural Sustainable Infrastructure... 

De Lille launches Sustainable Infrastructure System, methodology 

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd June 2020 Infrastructure investment, together with the use of public land and buildings, is a critical lever to achieve spatial and economic justice by connecting South Africa’s citizens, integrating its communities and bringing people closer to work opportunities, Public Works and Infrastructure Minister... 

Next renewables bidding round to be launched only in second quarter of 2021   

By: Terence Creamer     23rd June 2020 The new head of South Africa’s Independent Power Producers Office (IPPO), Tshifhiwa Bernard Magoro, reported on Tuesday that the next bidding round for the procurement of utility scale renewable-energy projects, often referred to as Bid Window 5, would be launched only in the second quarter of... 

Next renewables bidding round to be launched only in second quarter of 2021
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Tshifhiwa Bernard Magoro

Ramaphosa says infrastructure to be placed at heart of South Africa’s postpandemic stimulus  

By: Terence Creamer     23rd June 2020 President Cyril Ramaphosa believes that infrastructure should be the “flywheel” of South Africa’s economic recovery from the growth- and job-destroying Covid-19 crisis and announced on Tuesday that infrastructure would, thus, be placed at the centre of South Africa’s postpandemic stimulus... 

Ramaphosa says infrastructure to be placed at heart of South Africa’s postpandemic stimulus
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Safepod commissions demo unit to showcase Covid-19 medical facility

By: Donna Slater     22nd June 2020 Prefabricated modular medical facility manufacturer and equipper Safepod has built and outfitted a five-bed isolation unit at the company’s offices in Saxonwold to showcase how quickly it can be set up, as well as its footprint and usability. Safepod was established as a partnership between... 

Safepod commissions demo unit to showcase Covid-19 medical facility
The 5-bed Safepod demonstration unit

BLSA welcomes corruption-related arrests after long wait

By: Marleny Arnoldi     22nd June 2020 Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) CEO Busi Mavuso in the organisation’s latest weekly newsletter welcomed the arrests made last week of people involved in alleged corruption related to the VBS Mutual Bank. She says the country has been waiting for National Prosecuting Authority (NPA)... 

BLSA welcomes corruption-related arrests after long wait
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Business Leadership South Africa CEO Busi Mavuso

Renewables statistics point to slow response to South Africa’s power constraints 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd June 2020 New statistics released by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) Energy Centre show that South Africa added only 100 MW of additional utility scale renewable-energy capacity in 2019, despite supply-side constraints and an intensive period of load-shedding. In fact, the report... 

Renewables statistics point to slow response to South Africa’s power constraints

Collaborative effort to unblock chronic congestion at SA’s busiest port

By: Irma Venter     19th June 2020 New equipment, improved access roads, synchronised, longer operating hours and a truck booking system are all in the works for the heavily congested Port of Durban, says Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) Port of Durban GM Moshe Motlohi. The country’s busiest port has long been criticised... 

Collaborative effort to unblock chronic congestion at SA’s busiest port

More profiles can benefit local market

By: Darren Parker     19th June 2020 The current SANS 517 for light-steel-frame building, which is still in development, focuses only on the application of the C-channel profile, but consulting engineering firm ES Consulting Engineers and Associates structural, fire and energy consulting engineer Wessel Esterhuizen believes that it... 

More profiles can benefit local market
NO LIGHT MATTER Light steel frame building can have more engineering challenges than meets the eye, especially when larger, more complicated projects are considered

Emergency structures present opportunity for sector

By: Darren Parker     19th June 2020 Although the Covid-19 national lockdown proved “disastrous” for the light-steel-frame building sector – as it was for the rest of the construction sector – Southern African Light Steel Frame Building Association (Sasfa) director John Barnard believes that there are opportunities for the sector.... 

Emergency structures present opportunity for sector
SWIFT AND STURDY The speed with which light steel frame structures can be erected makes them eminently suitable for the building of emergency structures

Training course goes online

By: Darren Parker     19th June 2020 The Southern African Light Steel Frame Building Association (Sasfa) has had to adapt its five-day training course for building contractors, architects, engineers and quantity surveyors to an online presentation, owing to the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions on gatherings. The online version of the... 

Training course goes online
JOHN BARNARD Light-steel-frame building could become more popular in South Africa if more local suppliers and builders were properly trained

UK government gives cash injection to new energy storage technology project

By: Rebecca Campbell     18th June 2020 The British government has awarded a grant of £10-million to support the construction of the world’s first commercial liquid air battery storage facility, at Trafford in Greater Manchester. The facility will be able to store enough electricity to power 200 000 homes for five hours a day, and will... 

UK government gives cash injection to new energy storage technology project
Artist’s impression of the combined liquid air energy storage and power generation facility at Trafford

South Africa seeks $87bn for decade-long building boom 

By: Bloomberg     18th June 2020 South Africa’s government told asset managers and banks it needs R1.5-trillion ($87-billion) of infrastructure investment over the next decade, the country’s biggest specialist fixed-income fund said. At a meeting at the end of last month the infrastructure commission in President Cyril... 

Tussle for control of the Nile escalates as megadam talks falter

By: Bloomberg     18th June 2020 A last ditch attempt to resolve a decade-long dispute between Egypt and Ethiopia over a huge new hydropower dam on the Nile has failed, raising the stakes in what - for all the public focus on technical issues - is a tussle for control over the region’s most important water source. The talks... 

Midvaal municipality pursues pioneering electricity distribution PPP model  

By: Terence Creamer     18th June 2020 The Midvaal municipality, in southern Gauteng, has issued a pioneering tender through which it is seeking to enter into a long-term concession agreement with a private entity to manage, operate and finance its electricity distribution service and to invest in new technologies. The municipality... 

Midvaal municipality pursues pioneering electricity distribution PPP model
DBSA specialist adviser Elliott Monama on the proposed Midvaal Electricity Distribution Services PPP. Camera Work & Editing: Kutlwano Matala and Nicholas Boyd. Recorded: 18 June 2020.

IEA makes case for $3-trillion global clean-energy stimulus plan  

By: Terence Creamer     18th June 2020 The International Energy Agency (IEA) released a ‘Sustainable Recovery Plan’ on June 18 that outlines the case for a $3-trillion global clean-energy stimulus plan over the coming three years to help repair the economic and employment damage caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Produced in... 

IEA makes case for $3-trillion global clean-energy stimulus plan

Philip Hourquebie appointed chairperson of Aveng

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     17th June 2020 JSE-listed Aveng has appointed Philip Hourquebie chairperson. This follows thee retirement of Eric Diack from the board. 

In open letter to SOE Council, BLSA appeals for ‘radical transparency’ 

17th June 2020 Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) has written an open letter to the members of the newly appointed Presidential State-owned Enterprises Council. In it, the organisation calls for full transparency and an openness to alternative solutions where the rot is too deep and where systems and... 

Necsa welcomes issuing of nuclear request for information

By: Rebecca Campbell     17th June 2020 The South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) has welcomed the issuing of a Request for Information (RFI) by the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) regarding the possible construction of new nuclear power plants (NPPs) in the country. This RfI was issued on June 14. Necsa... 

After fall in FDI flows to South Africa in 2019, report warns of big pandemic-induced slump

By: Terence Creamer     16th June 2020 Foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows to South Africa decreased by 15% to $4.6-billion in 2019, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development’s (Unctad’s) latest World Investment Report shows. The fall follows on from a strong 2018 recovery, when inflows to South Africa more than... 

After fall in FDI flows to South Africa in 2019, report warns of big pandemic-induced slump

Concor’s youth development strategy seeks to drive transformation through education

By: Terence Creamer     15th June 2020 Black-owned construction group Concor is implementing a youth development strategy that is focused exclusively on education and skills development, which the company views as the most critical driver of ongoing transformation. Concor’s history of contributing to youth development predates its... 

Concor’s youth development strategy seeks to drive transformation through education
Concor offers support for learners is through partnerships, including the Tomorrow Trust Saturday School Programme

Tlou Energy releases share offering to raise A$3m 

By: Donna Slater     15th June 2020 Botswana-based energy company Tlou Energy has released a partially underwritten entitlement offer of up to 75-million new offer shares at a price of A$0.04 apiece to raise A$3-million. Tlou generates electricity in Botswana for supply into the local and regional power markets and is developing... 

Mavuso laments all-time low in business confidence

By: Donna Slater     15th June 2020 Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) CEO Busi Mavuso says business confidence in South Africa is destroyed. In a weekly newsletter, she points out that the latest Rand Merchant Bank/Bureau of Economic Research business confidence index shows that 95% of businesses are dissatisfied with... 

Mantashe justifies controversial nuclear RFI on basis of ‘long lead-time’ involved

By: Terence Creamer     14th June 2020 Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe has justified the issuance of a controversial request for information (RFI) relating to a possible 2 500 MW new nuclear build programme on the basis of the long lead-time involved for the building of such power stations. In a Tweet following... 

Mantashe justifies controversial nuclear RFI on basis of ‘long lead-time’ involved
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe

Garden Route dam raising duckbill spillway increases capacity, enhances safety

By: Schalk Burger     12th June 2020 Engineering, design and advisory company Aurecon developed a ‘duckbill’ spillway as part of the project to raise the Garden Route dam, which is the main supply for water-scarce George, in the Western Cape. This not only increased the dam’s existing storage capacity by 25%, but also significantly... 

Garden Route dam raising duckbill spillway increases capacity, enhances safety

Concrete Institute takes courses online

By: Marleny Arnoldi     12th June 2020 The Concrete Institute (TCI) says the last thing that the construction industry needs now is a costly site mishap caused by untrained staff, since it is already fighting for survival after incurring significant losses during the initial levels of the lockdown. TCI School of Concrete Technology... 

Concrete Institute takes courses online

Public renewables ownership in South Africa could aid in removing potential barrier to decarbonisation  

By: Terence Creamer     12th June 2020 A new study of electricity sector reform in South Africa warns that opposition to private ownership has the potential to become a barrier to decarbonisation and recommends further research into how public, municipal or community ownership could be incorporated into the deployment of renewables.... 

Public renewables ownership in South Africa could aid in removing potential barrier to decarbonisation

Sanral seeks go-ahead to move to paperless tender process

By: Irma Venter     12th June 2020 The South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) is awaiting permission to move to an online tender system, says Sanral Eastern Region regional manager Dumi Nkabinde. Seventy tenders are currently undergoing compliance checks at Sanral, while 132 are under evaluation. The number of... 

MBA North urges all stakeholders to reach force majeure consensus

By: Irma Venter     12th June 2020 As the construction industry gears up to return to work as the national Covid-19 lockdown moves to Alert Level 3, industry stakeholders need to come together to reach consensus on a number of contentious issues, says MBA North president and Gothic Construction director Wayne Albertyn.   “A key... 

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