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Renewable Energy News

Electricity grids to benefit from IoT

By: Nadine Ramdass     16th April 2021 Embracing renewable energy, adapting business models, reducing operational expenditure and using Internet of Things (IoT) technologies can lead to effective power generation and transmission, says University of Pretoria (UP) associate professor Raj Naidoo. While the energy model for electricity... 

Solar to offer relief for the grid

By: Nadine Ramdass     16th April 2021 Southern Africa is familiar with low levels of electricity access and frequent electricity power cuts, owing to dilapidating infrastructure and its inadequacy to provide electricity in rural areas. However, using alternative and more affordable energy sources, such as solar, wind and... 

Solar to offer relief  for the grid
Kudzaishe Chivandire, CFA Stakeholders need to work together to ensure Southern Africa reaches energy mix potential

Tenders awarded to connect Lesedi gas, solar project to Botswana grid

By: Schalk Burger     15th April 2021 Southern African energy development company Tlou Energy has awarded tenders for the construction of transmission lines and substations to connect the coal-bed methane Lesedi power project to the Botswana national electricity grid at Serowe, the company said on April 14. Botswana electrical... 

Anglo American secures 100% renewables across its South American operations

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     15th April 2021 Diversified miner Anglo American has delivered on its commitment to source 100% renewable energy for all its operations in Brazil, Chile and Peru. The miner previously secured renewable energy to meet all of its power requirements for its iron-ore and nickel operations in Brazil from 2022, as... 

Anglo American secures 100% renewables across its South American operations
The Quellaveco copper operation, in Peru, will be powered by renewable energy.

Cabinet expected to approve Hydrogen Society Roadmap by early 2022 at latest 

By: Terence Creamer     14th April 2021 South Africa’s Hydrogen Society Roadmap (HSRM) will be presented for Cabinet approval either before the end of the year or early next year and should outline how the country’s resource advantages should be leveraged to produce green hydrogen, as well as to integrate hydrogen-related technologies,... 

 Cabinet expected to approve Hydrogen Society Roadmap by early 2022 at latest

GE, PowerChina hydro project on Zambia-Zimbabwe border delayed

By: Bloomberg     14th April 2021 GE, PowerChina hydro project on Zambia-Zimbabwe border delayed The developers of a $4-billion hydropower plant on the Zambia-Zimbabwe border delayed the project until next year because of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Sasol takes ambitious steps towards becoming a green-hydrogen major 

By: Terence Creamer     13th April 2021 Energy and Chemicals group Sasol made announcements on Tuesday that potentially open the way for the coal- and gas-heavy company to begin an energy transition designed to reposition it as a green hydrogen major and a leading global producer of carbon-neutral jet fuel. CEO Fleetwood Grobler... 

Sasol takes ambitious steps towards becoming a green-hydrogen major
Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler

South Africa stands to benefit from green hydrogen production – CDH

By: Donna Slater     13th April 2021 The advantages of green hydrogen technology to meet South Africa’s goals of transitioning to a lower carbon energy sector appear “uncontested”, says law firm Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr (CDH). To qualify as a form of clean energy technology (one that does not contribute to greenhouse-gas emissions and... 

Sasol and Air Liquide initiate first phase of 900 MW renewables procurement process 

By: Terence Creamer     13th April 2021 Sasol and Air Liquide have formally announced plans to jointly procure 900 MW of renewable-energy capacity from independent power producers (IPPs) by 2030 and have issued a request for proposal (RFP) through which they aim to procure an initial 600 MW this year. The transaction, the companies... 

Sasol and Air Liquide initiate first phase of 900 MW renewables procurement process
Photo by Creamer Media
Power lines in the foreground, with Sasol's Secunda complex in the background

Wärtsilä converting 90 MW fuel oil power plant to LNG in Senegal

By: Schalk Burger     12th April 2021 Energy and marine equipment manufacturer Wärtsilä will convert the 90 MW Bel-Air heavy fuel oil power plant in Dakar, Senegal, to operate on liquefied natural gas (LNG). The project is part of an interim LNG-to-power bridge solution, and is the first power plant gas conversion in Senegal, the... 

Egypt, Sudan reject Ethiopian proposal for data sharing on Renaissance dam

By: Reuters     12th April 2021 Egypt and Sudan on Saturday rejected an Ethiopian proposal to share data on the operations of its giant hydropower dam on the Blue Nile after negotiations between the three countries in Kinshasa this week ended without progress. Ethiopia is pinning its hopes of economic development and power... 

Moshesh achieves first close on renewable energy, clean infrastructure fund

By: Schalk Burger     9th April 2021 Asset management company Moshesh Partners has reached a first close for its first renewable energy and clean infrastructure fund, and is targeting R2-billion in assets under management in the next 18 months, said Moshesh Partners co-founding member and CEO Sifiso Shongwe on April 9. This goal was... 

Bank of America triples environmental funding goal to $1tr by 2030

By: Schalk Burger     9th April 2021 Financial institution Bank of America on April 8 announced its goal of deploying and mobilising $1-trillion by 2030 in its Environmental Business Initiative to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon, sustainable economy. This commitment will anchor a broader $1.5-trillion sustainable finance... 

Global net zero ambitions  

9th April 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the global push for net zero, what this means for the future energy system and whether South Africa is on the same net zero pathway as other countries. 

Global net zero ambitions
Global net zero ambitions

New PEM generators launched

By: Mc'Kyla Nortje     9th April 2021 Renewable-energy and hydrogen supply company Nel Hydrogen launched the MC250 and MC500 containerised large-scale proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolysers. The PEM electrolysers represent automated megawatt-class on-site hydrogen generators, using a modular containerised design for ease of... 

New PEM generators launched
PEM ELECTROLYSER The new generators are integrating the 1.25 MW PEM cell stack

Local content rules for PV modules posing a challenge for ‘emergency’ solar projects  

By: Terence Creamer     8th April 2021 The stipulation that solar projects bid as part of the Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (RMIPPPP) include photovoltaic (PV) modules that meet the local-content thresholds and conditionalities outlined in government’s designation for PV components is causing some... 

Local content rules for PV modules posing a challenge for ‘emergency’ solar projects

Mahlako launches R1.5bn renewables, gas and energy services fund

By: Schalk Burger     7th April 2021 Female-owned investment fund manager Mahlako Financial Services has launched a R1.5-billion investment fund that will invest in businesses and energy projects with growth potential along the entire value chain to close the energy infrastructure gap in South Africa and transform the sector. “We... 

Wärtsilä signs maintenance agreement with Nigerian energy supplier

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     7th April 2021 Technology group Wärtsilä has signed a long-term optimised maintenance agreement covering power plants in three locations owned by 100% privately-owned Nigerian energy provider Paras Energy. The aim of the agreement is to ensure the plants’ continued high levels of availability, reliability and... 

Agreements finalised for 200 MW Egyptian solar PV plant

By: Donna Slater     7th April 2021 Saudi-based power generation and desalinated water plant developer, investor and operator Acwa Power has finalised the project agreements for the 200 MW Kom Ombo solar photovoltaic (PV) plant, in Egypt. Construction of the plant is expected to start in the third quarter of this year.  

Old Mutual Fund says South Africa needs gas as a transition fuel

By: Bloomberg     6th April 2021 A key funder of South Africa’s renewable energy drive is backing natural gas as the fuel needed to help the country bridge the transition from coal power generation to the use of wind and solar. Old Mutual Ltd.’s African Infrastructure Investment Managers will consider funding companies that... 

Egypt says latest round of GERD talks are 'last chance' before second dam filling

By: Reuters     6th April 2021 The latest meeting between Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam may be the last chance to re-launch talks before it is filled for the second year in a row, Egypt said in a statement on Sunday. The meeting concludes on Monday in Kinshasa. Previous attempts at reaching... 

DMRE delays release of renewables bid documentation  

By: Terence Creamer     1st April 2021 The release of the request for proposal (RFP) documentation for Bid Window 5 (BW 5) of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) has been delayed, the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) has confirmed. The department reports that the delay is... 

DMRE delays release of renewables bid documentation

Sun Exchange completes $1.4m crowdsale for agricultural solar project

By: Schalk Burger     31st March 2021 Solar energy marketplace Sun Exchange has completed a $1.4-million crowdsale for a 510 kW solar and 1 MWh battery storage project to power the packhouse and cold store facilities of Zimbabwean agriculture company Nhimbe Fresh. The fresh produce grower and exporter will save about $2-million on... 

Global energy leaders say jobs must be at heart of people-centred energy transition 

By: Terence Creamer     31st March 2021 Employment creation for workers and communities at the highest risk of disruption as a result of the shift to greater climate-resiliency was identified during a gathering of global energy leaders on Wednesday as essential to ensuring that the transition was not only people-centred but also... 

Global energy leaders say jobs must be at heart of people-centred energy transition

South Africa requires more than 21 GW of energy storage for least-cost 100% renewables 

By: Schalk Burger     31st March 2021 Energy and marine equipment manufacturer Wärtsilä South Africa on March 31 said the country would need more than 28 GW of flexible assets, including more than 21 GW of energy storage and more than 6.8 GW of flexible gas power capacity, to run on 100% renewable energy at the lowest cost. The... 

South Africa requires more than 21 GW of energy storage for least-cost 100% renewables

Creecy unveils draft updated Nationally Determined Contribution  

31st March 2021   Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the draft updated Nationally Determined Contribution unveiled by Environment Minister Barbara Creecy, as well as about South Africa's climate finance targets and the fact that the country is not yet ready to... 

Creecy unveils draft updated Nationally Determined Contribution
Creecy unveils draft updated Nationally Determined Contribution

South Africa’s draft climate pledge offers quicker emission cuts, but seeks steep rise in yearly climate funding to $8bn 

By: Terence Creamer     30th March 2021 South Africa’s draft updated Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) unveiled by Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy on March 30, proposes quicker emission cuts, but also outlines the need for a step change in international climate finance to support the country’s... 

South Africa’s draft climate pledge offers quicker emission cuts, but seeks steep rise in yearly climate funding to $8bn
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy

Cautious optimism in renewables industry as Bid Window 5 opens

By: Schalk Burger     30th March 2021 Renewable energy developers are cautiously optimistic about the announcements made by the South African government that Bid Window 5 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) is going ahead, but the documents specifying requirements are still not... 

New independent utility emerges to pursue private-to-private power niche  

By: Terence Creamer     30th March 2021 A new independent power utility has been established in South Africa to sell electricity directly to private and municipal customers rather than to Eskom. Branded Earth & Wire, the company aims to build a large-scale portfolio of renewable-energy assets and enter into power purchase agreements... 

New independent utility emerges to pursue private-to-private power niche
Photo by Earth & Wire
One of Earth & Wire's existing facilities

Vestas optimistic about South Africa, Africa's onshore wind potential

By: Schalk Burger     30th March 2021 Denmark-based wind energy equipment multinational Vestas is optimistic about renewable energy, and specifically onshore wind energy, opportunities in South Africa and more broadly in Africa. "We are also evaluating the potential of South Africa to act as a possible industrial hub towards the... 

South Africa continues to be G20 coal outlier, report shows  

By: Terence Creamer     29th March 2021 With 86% of the country’s electricity produced from coal, South Africa continued to have the highest reliance on the energy mineral among all G20 countries in 2020, with the global average standing at 34%. The ‘Global Electricity Review 2021’, published on March 29, indicates that the G20 country... 

South Africa continues to be G20 coal outlier, report shows

Mantashe to co-chair global panel this week on people-centred energy transitions  

By: Terence Creamer     29th March 2021 South Africa’s Mineral Resources and Energy Minister, Gwede Mantashe, will co-chair a high-level Ministerial panel this week on ‘Ensuring People-Centred Transitions’ as part of a global ‘Net Zero Summit’ being hosted jointly by International Energy Agency (IEA) executive director Fatih Birol and... 

Mantashe to co-chair global panel this week on people-centred energy transitions
Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe

BioTherm’s Excelsior wind farm works for bird conservation

By: Marleny Arnoldi     29th March 2021 Working in collaboration with conservation organisations, BioTherm Energy’s Excelsior wind energy facility, in the Western Cape, is pioneering the wind industry’s approach to conserving avifauna. The programmes that are being implemented go beyond looking at the potential impact of the wind... 

Fair Cape Dairies takes step towards going off-grid with new solar plant

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     26th March 2021 Fair Cape Dairies has installed a 560 kW solar power plant at its operations, allowing it to produce fresh milk off grid during daylight hours. This facility will generate about one-million kilowatt-hours of energy and will save about 400 000 kg of carbon dioxide a year. 

Electricity sector developments  

26th March 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the details of the nature and pricing for projects selected as preferred bidders for the emergency bid window; the National Energy Regulator of South Africa's view of the future; and global wind installations... 

Electricity sector developments
Electricity sector developments

Global wind installation step change required to meet net-zero goal 

By: Terence Creamer     25th March 2021 Despite Covid-afflicted 2020 emerging as the best-ever year for global wind-energy installations, a new industry report argues that the rate of yearly deployments will have to more than double before the end of the current decade if onshore and offshore wind generators are to make their rightful... 

Global wind installation step change required to meet net-zero goal

UK Climate Investment Finance delivers 254 MW of renewable projects in South Africa

By: Schalk Burger     25th March 2021 The UK international climate finance programme, UK Climate Investments, has helped finance three renewable energy projects with a combined capacity of 254 MW in South Africa in South Africa. The inauguration of the 4 MW run-of-river hydropower facility Kruisvallei Hydro, in the Free State, on... 

UK Climate Investment Finance delivers 254 MW of renewable projects in South Africa
Kruisvallei Hydro
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