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Renewable Energy News

Gap analysis needed to guide gas-to-power industry growth

By: Darren Parker     16th October 2020 With the potential of gas as an alternative energy source in South Africa an encouraging prospect, South African Oil and Gas Alliance (Saoga) CEO Adrian Strydom says the gas-to-power industry needs to conduct an accurate gap analysis, and engage in upskilling and capacity building to ensure that... 

Gas-powered solutions offer lower upfront cost

By: Darren Parker     16th October 2020 In a capital-constrained Covid-19-affected market, gas-fired generators offer the advantage of a relatively low upfront capital cost, compared with coal- or diesel-fired alternatives, says energy solutions company GE Gas Power Sub-Saharan Africa  executive Nosizwe Dlengezele. She adds that it is... 

Gas-powered solutions offer lower upfront cost
NOSIZWE DLENGEZELE Gas plays an important role in bridging the energy gap to help create a lower-carbon energy future

Recognition of LPG benefits in energy mix growing

16th October 2020 For many years, the benefits of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) for South Africa “have been largely, frustratingly, moot”, according to a statement from industry association LPG South Africa (LPGSA). The doubt surrounding LPG’s benefits stems from an historically inconsistent and unreliable supply... 

Recognition of LPG benefits in energy mix growing
BIG BOY Bidvest Tank Terminal’s large-scale mounded LPG storage facility in Richards Bay was scheduled for completion this year

Independent grid and market operator ‘required’ to attract much-needed generation investment – De Ruyter  

By: Terence Creamer     15th October 2020 Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter has drawn a direct link between securing the investment required to address South Africa’s growth-sapping electricity supply gaps – including some R100-billion to further develop the grid in ways to unlock what will be mostly private generation investment ­– and the... 

Independent grid and market operator ‘required’ to attract much-needed generation investment – De Ruyter
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

Ramaphosa promises rapid power roll-out, but two-year timeframe for solving crisis ambitious 

By: Terence Creamer     15th October 2020 President Cyril Ramaphosa listed the rapid expansion of South Africa’s electricity generation, primarily through the building of additional renewable-energy capacity, as a key priority in government’s long-waited ‘Reconstruction and Recovery Plan’, which he unveiled in Parliament on Thursday. The... 

Ramaphosa promises rapid power roll-out, but two-year timeframe for solving crisis ambitious
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Standard Bank continues to increase exposure to renewables, move away from coal

By: Marleny Arnoldi     15th October 2020 Standard Bank has released its interim Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures report, highlighting that environmental, social and governance aspects remain at the centre of the bank’s agenda of driving sustainable and inclusive growth in Africa. Sustainability head Wendy Dobson... 

Standard Bank continues to increase exposure to renewables, move away from coal

SAPVIA joins forces with European solar association to realise opportunities

By: Marleny Arnoldi     14th October 2020 The South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (SAPVIA) and the European association for solar SolarPower Europe has joined forces to unlock the potential of solar power and ensure that South Africa reaps the economic and societal benefits of renewable energy. Both associations have been... 

78 MW Bokamoso solar park begins commercial operations

By: Terence Creamer     14th October 2020 Another large-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) project procured under the fourth bid window of South Africa’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) has entered into commercial operation. The fourth bid window eventually closed in 2018, following a four-year... 

78 MW Bokamoso solar park begins commercial operations
The 78 MW Bokamoso Solar Park

Renewable energy tool to assist household applications

By: Donna Slater     13th October 2020 Energy company Total and cloud computing company Google Cloud have pooled their expertise to jointly develop an innovative tool – Solar Mapper – which aims to accelerate the deployment of solar panels for individuals. The business-to-consumer tool works by providing an accurate and rapid... 

Renewable energy tool to assist household applications

Solar ‘new king’ of electricity, but shift to net zero will require ‘unwavering efforts from all’ 

By: Terence Creamer     13th October 2020 The International Energy Agency (IEA) has declared solar the “new king” of electricity, arguing that, while renewables technologies as a whole are poised for rapid growth over the coming several decades, solar will be “at the centre of this new constellation of electricity generation... 

Solar ‘new king’ of electricity, but shift to net zero will require ‘unwavering efforts from all’

Opinion: Black-blade mitigation – a new and exciting mitigation for wind turbines to reduce impacts to birds of prey

9th October 2020 In this opinion piece, ecologist, environmental consultant and conservation biologist Dr Rob Simmons writes about black blade mitigation can help wind farms to prevent thousands of bird deaths each year. The renewable energy industry promises green energy that comes with numerous benefits to the... 

Opinion: Black-blade mitigation – a new and exciting mitigation for wind turbines to reduce impacts to birds of prey
Photo by Bjorn Iuell
The black-blade set up on a cloudy day in Norway. The black-blade (far turbine) is little different to the shadow cast by the all-white blades in the foreground.

Energy expert calls for RMIPPPP overhaul to facilitate cheaper, cleaner emergency power 

By: Terence Creamer     8th October 2020 Energy expert Clyde Mallinson is calling on government to urgently overhaul its Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (RMIPPPP), which he says not only fails to address the country’s immediate electricity needs, but will also lock in dirty and expensive energy for the... 

Energy expert calls for RMIPPPP overhaul to facilitate cheaper, cleaner emergency power
Clyde Mallinson

World Bank forecasts ‘weak’ recovery for South Africa from Covid-19 

By: Terence Creamer     8th October 2020 The World Bank expects South Africa’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic to be weak relative to most other countries in sub-Saharan Africa, forecasting an economic expansion of only 2.6% in 2021 on the back of a massive 7.2% contraction this year. In its latest ‘Africa’s Pulse’ publication, the... 

World Bank forecasts ‘weak’ recovery for South Africa from Covid-19
Photo by Creamer Media
World Bank highlights power reforms in South Africa to reduce dependence on Eskom

Solar, renewable energy conference to be held virtually next month

By: Simone Liedtke     8th October 2020 Solar power capacity and energy generation is rapidly increasing and has, over the last decade, become one of the fastest growing sources of renewable energy in the world. As a result of technological advances, sharp declines in costs, improved policies and growing concerns over climate change,... 

Perdekraal East Wind Farm achieves commercial operations

By: Simone Liedtke     8th October 2020 The Perdekraal East Wind Farm project has completed its grid code tests – the final milestone before achieving its commercial operations date (COD). This comes almost two years after construction began at the site. 

Perdekraal East Wind Farm achieves commercial operations

Matla A Bokone Solar plant now wholly South African-owned

By: Simone Liedtke     6th October 2020 Northern Cape-based Matla A Bokone Solar, near Kimberley, is now wholly South African-owned by Old Mutual Ideas Managed Fund, African Rainbow Energy and Power, Reatile Group, Phakwe Solar and the Cicada Community Trust. The 75 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) plant spans 200 ha and has over 260 000... 

Matla A Bokone Solar plant now wholly South African-owned

Imperial Wanderers Stadium adds solar as an energy source

By: Simone Liedtke     6th October 2020 The Imperial Wanderers Stadium, in Johannesburg, is one of the first stadiums in South Africa to "go green" through a partnership with Imperial and the SolarSaver Group to bring solar power to the multipurpose entertainment and lifestyle venue through the installation of a customised 250 kW solar... 

Imperial Wanderers Stadium adds solar as an energy source

Ethiopia says GERD dam will begin generating power in next 12 months

By: Reuters     5th October 2020 Ethiopia's giant new hydropower dam on the Blue Nile will begin generating power in the next 12 months, the country's president said on Monday. “This year will be a year where the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam will start generating power with the two turbines," Sahle-Work Zewde said in a speech... 

BlueNova undertakes 1 MWh battery export to Namibia

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th October 2020 Energy storage solution company BlueNova Energy has undertaken its first international export of an intelligent Energy Storage System (iESS). The iESS is a containerised energy unit, which will be installed at the Timbila Nature Reserve in Namibia, as the heart of an offgrid solar-powered... 

BlueNova undertakes 1 MWh battery export to Namibia
BlueNova getting ready to load an iESS containerised energy storage solution

DBSA appoints Rakgate to head Infrastructure Fund

By: Terence Creamer     5th October 2020 The State-owned Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) has, from October 1, appointed Mohale Rakgate as its new group executive for the Infrastructure Fund, which has been established by government to support an accelerated roll-out of economic and social infrastructure. Infrastructure is... 

DBSA appoints Rakgate to head Infrastructure Fund
Mohale Rakgate

Ethiopia bans flights over dam for security reasons - aviation chief

By: Reuters     5th October 2020 Ethiopia has banned all flights over its giant new hydropower dam on the Blue Nile for security reasons, the head of its civil aviation authority said on Monday. Ethiopia is locked in a dispute with Egypt and Sudan over its $4-billion Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, which Cairo has said could... 

Spanish solar tracking group establishes formal presence in South Africa 

By: Terence Creamer     5th October 2020 Spanish solar tracker and structures specialist STI Norland has, since the start of October, established an active presence in South Africa, which it views as an attractive market for utility scale solar photovoltaic (PV) projects. An office and warehouse facility is being established in Port... 

Spanish solar tracking group establishes formal presence in South Africa
The 94.3 MWp Sishen PV Plant in the Northern Cape

City of Cape Town drafting ‘mini IRP’ as it prepares way for IPP procurement 

By: Terence Creamer     2nd October 2020 The City of Cape Town, which has been pushing for the right of municipalities to procure electricity directly from independent power producers for several years, is currently compiling what it describes as a “mini” integrated resource plan to guide its future procurement decisions and actions.... 

City of Cape Town drafting ‘mini IRP’ as it prepares way for IPP procurement

Renewed hope for industrialisation and transformation ahead of wind procurement

By: Terence Creamer     2nd October 2020 The failure of the R536-million DCD Wind Towers facility, established in the Coega Special Economic Zone in 2013, has become the poster child for the damage inflicted when South Africa’s political infighting and intrigue gives way to policy uncertainty and stalled implementation. The investment... 

Renewed hope for industrialisation and transformation ahead of wind procurement

Company provides solutions for remote wind farm

By: Cameron Mackay     2nd October 2020 Air compressor, pumps and generator rental supplier Rand-Air has supplied a new wind farm project, in the Eastern Cape, with energy solutions for on-site offices. The supplier provided 12 QLV model lighting towers, and four 60 kVA generators with distribution boards. 

Company enters wind energy space locally

2nd October 2020 As engineering solutions provider Zest WEG’s holding company, Brazil-based WEG, is already well-established in the wind energy sector in South America, Zest WEG is developing its own momentum in this segment locally. According to Zest WEG integrated solutions executive Alastair Gerrard, the role... 

Wake loss could create headwinds

By: Cameron Mackay     2nd October 2020 With wind energy set to contribute more to the national energy grid in the future, owing to the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) 2019, wake loss will become more of a challenge as the wind energy sector grows, says local wind energy company Aurora Wind Power CEO Mmoledi Chisalokile. “The IRP 2019... 

Microgrids present ideal platform for wind energy

By: Cameron Mackay     2nd October 2020 Using microgrids offers an ideal platform for renewable-energy sources, such as wind energy, to be used more extensively, says turnkey energy project solutions provider SEM Solutions national sales manager Tiaan Hendriks. Renewable-energy sources, such as wind and solar photovoltaic (PV) energy,... 

Windaba riding winds of digital change

By: Cameron Mackay     2nd October 2020 Owing to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and physical distancing regulations, the tenth yearly Windaba Conference and Exhibition will be hosted as a virtual event on October 26 and 27. The Windaba event brings together exhibitors, industry pioneers and leaders, investors, and power producers. 

Software boosts company’s capability in wind energy

By: Cameron Mackay     2nd October 2020 Energy project solutions provider UL has released a beta version of its Wind Resource Assessment Platform (WRAP) software, after the company began development on the wind energy yield assessment software last year. Released to market in June this year, UL renewable energy VP Michael Brower says... 

Software boosts company’s capability in wind energy
NAVIGATING WINDY TIMES UL has been increasing its investment in digital solutions for wind energy for several years, as the Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated this trend

Wind farms in Northern, Western Cape head for completion

2nd October 2020 Two of major renewable power generation company Lekela Power’s wind farms will take major steps towards completion and to contributing 250 MW of energy to the national power grid before the end of the year. The Perdekraal East Wind Farm will add 110 MW to the grid. It is one of the company’s... 

Renewables in Africa – power is only half the story

2nd October 2020 Energy companies should combine the provision of power with positive economic impacts for the communities where they build their projects, says renewable power generation company Lekela Power CEO Chris Antonopoulos. Lekela’s portfolio includes more than 1 300 MW of wind power projects in Egypt,... 

Wind industry ready for surplus energy procurement

By: Cameron Mackay     2nd October 2020 The local wind energy industry is “eagerly anticipating a growth phase”, as the approved Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) 2019 allocates 14.4 GW of wind power that needs to be added to the local energy mix from 2022. “This requires government to move swiftly in announcing the next round of... 

Skills demand in wind sector met

By: Cameron Mackay     2nd October 2020 As more wind energy farms are constructed and contribute to employment, demand for the training and retraining of people to work on wind turbines will increase, which has consequently resulted in wind turbines safety training provider AID Renewables’ investing in improving its training processes... 

Creecy hints to inclusion of green components in economic recovery plan 

By: Terence Creamer     1st October 2020 Environment, Fisheries and Forestry Minister Barbara Creecy has indicated that government is likely to integrate green-economy components into the country’s Covid-19 economic recovery strategy, details of which are yet to be released by President Cyril Ramaphosa. Speaking during a webinar on... 

Creecy hints to inclusion of green components in economic recovery plan
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Environment, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Barbara Creecy

SA making the shift from coal to renewables 

1st October 2020 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Creamer Media Editor Terence Creamer about a just transition in South Africa's energy sector and how the country should go about preparing the way for that transition. 

SA making the shift from coal to renewables

Two of BioTherm’s solar plants start feeding into the grid  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     30th September 2020 The Aggeneys Solar and Konkoonsies II Solar utility-scale solar plants, in the Northern Cape, have started commercial operations. The plants add 132 MW to South Africa’s power generation capacity and together generate 33.3 GWh/y of clean energy.  

Two of BioTherm’s solar plants start feeding into the grid
BioTherm Energy solar plant
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