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A roadmap for underground coal gasification (UCG) is on the way with its own association and charter, according to Fossil Fuel Foundation (FFF) stalwart Professor Lionel Falcon, who said the UCG initiative followed the finalisation under FFF auspices 18 months ago of the South African Coal Roadmap, a document summarising a number of optional scenarios for South Africa to consider as it goes forward.   Falcon, a University of the Witwatersrand professor, said the FFF’s role in both of these initiatives was recognition of its status as an independent, interdisciplinary and auditable organisation, which had reciprocity with leading clean coal…
South Africa has demonstrated its innovative capabilities in the emerging hydrogen and fuel cell technologies space with the launch of a 2,5kW hydrogen fuel power generator prototype unit at the University of the Western Cape (UWC).   The generator was developed by the HySA Systems Integration and Technology Validation Centre of Competence (HySA Systems) and Hot Platinum Pty Ltd, a local company involved in power management and control electronics, with funds from the Department of Science and Technology (DST).   The companies have been testing the unit at the Cape Flats Nature Reserve, on the UWC’s Bellville campus, with remarkable…
One of the ideal thermal insulation solutions using IsoBoard is the inverted roof, so-called because in this type of construction the thermal insulation is applied on the outside of the building above the waterproofing membrane, the reverse of what is commonly the case with flat concrete roof decks.   The value of this system is that the waterproofing membrane is protected from weathering and will last almost indefinitely. If the roof deck is used for parking or as an entertainment area, the waterproofing system is protected by the insulation, as well as the paving ballast.   In addition, the mass…
A high-performance rigid moulded polystyrene insulator, Hydroboard is designed for applications where resistance to moisture and compression is required.   The physical properties of Hydroboard make it an ideal insulation board for under surface-bed, perimeter and cavity installations, both on new builds and refurbishments.   Inverted roof applicationIt is particularly suited for inverted roofs (protected membrane) application, where the insulation is laid on top of the waterproof membrane. This protects the membrane from ultraviolet (UV) degradation caused by solar radiation and the expansion and contraction that comes from summer and winter temperature cycles, which can be in excess of 40°C…
By Sven Lindström, CEO of Midsummer   With more than half of the planet’s population living in urban regions today and an expected growth of 75% over the next 30 to 35 years, seven billion people will live and work in urban areas by 2050 and the demand for energy will be huge. There is a growing consensus that the megacities of the future cannot rely entirely on energy produced far away. Local production of energy will be needed with building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) playing a key role to make cities at least partially self-sufficient with energy.   So far, the…
The 45 000m² East Rand Galleria in Boksburg, to be rebranded East Point, is currently undergoing a R411-million reconfiguration and renovation, which includes the replacement of the entire roof and all the insulation. Walls & Roofs investigated how a rational design approach has impacted this project.   Not only did a rational design approach dictate a significant saving on the amount of insulation required for East Point, but in doing so, it enabled the developer and owner, SA Corporate Real Estate Fund, to direct capital expenditure to other areas where it made a bigger difference in getting the best energy…
Besides the energy-saving benefits of proper insulation in buildings, there are also other benefits (such as achieving sustainable building standards as well as acoustic advantages). A challenge that many construction professionals face when specifying insulation is the fact that it needs to be able to withstand point loads, as well as carry sufficient insulation properties.   In order to address this problem, one must first define what insulation/thermal conductivity actually is. Thermal conductance of a material is measured as (W/m²K). In essence, the U-value addresses the ability of a material to conduct heat, while the R-value (m².K/W) measures the ability…
Toyota was named Energy Company of the Year for its outstanding holistic energy-saving approach completed by a dedicated energy-saving team. The company received this award at the 9th annual Southern African Energy-Efficiency Convention (SAEEC), which was held on 12 and 13 November 2014 at Emperors Palace, Gauteng.   Annually, the Southern African Association for Energy-Efficiency (SAEE) honours outstanding accomplishments of individuals and companies in the energy industry.   The Energy Project of the Year award went to Tronox Namakwa Sands, who, for the first half of 2014, exported a total of 29,2GWh into the Tronox Namakwa Sands smelter grid, with…
The 2014 Eskom Energy-Efficient Lighting Design Competition (EELDC) received a record number of school entries and the second highest number of overall entries in the history of the competition. A total of 506 designs were received. “This year’s entrants once again demonstrated remarkable creativity – not only in terms of highly original names for their creations, but also for the designs themselves,” commented Andrew Etzinger, Eskom’s senior general manager for integrated demand management, during his keynote address at the awards function.   “With the theme ‘Celebrate 20 years of democracy!’, it has been particularly impressive to see how entrants have…
As the first ever building to receive an Existing Building rating from the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA), the 18 675m² North Park in the Black River Park office complex in Observatory, Cape Town, has been recognised with a five-star Existing Building Performance (EBP) certification.   Launched in August 2014, the council’s Green Star SA EBP pilot tool recognises excellence in the performance of existing or older buildings where green building innovations have been introduced. The tool enables the effective measurement of a building’s environmental performance in relation to its operation and management, and provides indicators to ensure…
In order to compare the thermal resistance performance of faced fibre roof insulation installed with and without Insultrak™, the manufacturers of the system (D & D Roof Insulations) recently applied the ASHRAE method so that they could determine whether roof insulation spacers in over-purlin, fibre-glass roof installations offered any advantages.   What is the ASHRAE zone method? The ASHRAE zone method is a series/parallel calculation of heat flows and incorporates an edge effect zone that approximates the tendency for heat to enter and leave highly conductive elements, which might intrude through a system (ASHRAE Fundamentals Handbook 2009, Vol. 27.5). The…
One of the main problems with gaps in cavity wall insulation is condensation on the un-insulated areas. This is because the insulation raises the overall internal temperature, thereby increasing the amount of moisture that the air is able to hold, while the areas missing insulation are cooler in cold weather, causing surface condensation and wet spots.   Technopol’s high-performance cavity wall insulation, PolyKey, addresses this and other challenges such as loose fill or fibrous insulation that allows water to penetrate to the inside, board insulation that shrinks and leaves un-insulated gaps, mortar droppings that fill the cavity and render it…
Proposed residential or commercial developments are frequently met with requirements to comply with environmental impact assessments, as well as the myriad of local and national building regulations. Green building regulations, coupled with an increasing desire from clients and building owners to live in greener buildings, can help people to achieve their sustainability goals.   In many cities and suburbs, there is still a lot of energy wastage, poor water quality, flooding and heat islands, to name a few problems. The clarion call is for energy-efficiency, comfortable living and sustainability in all our interactions with the environment.   How a green…
Besides the energy saving benefits of proper insulation in buildings, there are also other benefits (such as achieving sustainable building standards as well as acoustic advantages). A challenge that many construction professionals face when specifying insulation is the fact that it needs to be able to withstand point loads, as well as carry sufficient insulation properties.   In order to address this problem, one must first define what insulation/thermal conductivity actually is. Thermal conductance of a material is measured as (W/m²K). In essence, the U-value addresses the ability of a material to conduct heat, while the R-value (m².K/W) measures the…
Architects face a number of challenges when it comes to planning a building that is beautiful, modern, functional as well as sustainable. Designing a green building, starts with choosing sustainable materials that will meet the needs of the client, as well as environmental requirements.   Glass blocks by Aluglass Bautech are able to reduce the environmental impact of the project, while simultaneously enhancing the aesthetic appeal and functionality of the building. Thanks to the natural transparency, glass can brighten up any interior space with sunlight, thus reducing electricity consumption during the day.   Glass blocksSeves glass blocks provide high thermal…
The much anticipated launch of the South African Women in Energy Network (SAWIEN), held in August 2014, offered the prominent women in attendance another exciting surprise, with the announcement of the first annual SA Women in Energy Award.   According to Marlene van Rooyen, founder of SAWIEN, this award celebrates extraordinary women and validates them for their hard work in advancing the energy landscape. It identifies an individual who is an outstanding exemplar in the local energy industry. It not only recognises achievers, but also encourages and inspires other women.   “The awarding of this prize is a matter of…
Lesotho’s capital, Maseru, has historically suffered from water shortages. There is now new hope for the people of the region thanks to the Metolong Dam and Water Supply Programme (MDWSP), which is set to improve water delivery to domestic users and the country’s textile industry, an important source of employment.   A major part of the new scheme is the Metolong Dam, which is being constructed on the Phuthiatsana River. The dam features 83m-high, roller-compacted concrete (RCC) walls with a design crest length of 280m. It is estimated that 330 000m³ of RCC and 40 000m³ of conventional vibrated concrete…
Door and window manufacturing company, Swartland, has launched a new system called SpecNet. This free, online specification tool gives construction and design professionals the option to choose products that are perfect for the space in question.   The system can be accessed at www.swartland.co.za/specnet and it gives architects, specifiers and builders access to ArchiCAD objects and Revit solutions. From the sketch design right through to execution, Swartland windows and doors make SpecNet available freely to all registered users.   “The benefits of using the SpecNet application is that it has been designed by professionals, for professionals, and it aims to…
Photovoltaic (PV) is the fastest growing power generation technology in the world, according to the South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (SAPVIA). Between 2006 and 2009 the installed capacity globally grew on average by 60% per annum. Today more than 35GW of PVs are installed and operating worldwide, producing more than 30 terawatt hours of clean energy per year.   In a statement issued by global electro-technical company, DEHN, it is pointed out that since self-generated electricity is generally cheaper and provides a high degree of electrical independence from the grid, PV systems will become an integral part of electrical installations…
The South African National Energy Development Institute (SANEDI) is conducting demonstrations of cool paint on low-income houses to improve thermal comfort for residents as well as building energy-efficiency. The Cool Surfaces Project is the South African involvement in the United States Department of Energy’s Global Superior Energy Programme (GSEP) Cool Roofs and Pavements Working Group.   According to Denise Lundall, project officer for energy-efficiency at SANEDI, the Cool Surfaces programme is currently focused on bringing thermal comfort in the informal and formal structures of low-income communities, including those that are off-grid, while simultaneously collecting data about the performance of these…
Keynote speaker at the recent Consulting Engineers South Africa (CESA) conference, Minister Thulas Nxesi of the Department of Public Works, believes that, “Government cannot deliver the National Development Plan (NDP) alone.  It is incumbent on the engineering fraternity to assist Government in delivering the priorities of the NDP and it is clear that engineering underpins these priorities.”  He stated that the CESA conference came at a time when the sector is grappling with the challenges of infrastructure delivery. He went on to say, “The chaos in all the processes and projects is a result of an ‘imbalance’ created by lack…
In keeping with the green forest design theme of the new Forest Hill City mall in Olievenhoutbosch, Pick n Pay has again opted for Lambdaboard® insulation for their Forest Hill store. About 3 500m² was kitted out with 80mm Lambdaboard® over purlin, proposed and supplied by Rigifoam.   Lambdaboard® is HCFC free and contains no other ozone depleting substances, which means that it does not contribute to global warming.   Ponen Rajah, Pick n Pay general manager for store design and construction explains that as part of the company’s drive towards green building, they look for green options when it…
Approximately 40% of all electricity consumption can be attributed to buildings (and a large part of a building’s energy consumption is spent on heating and cooling). Thermal insulation, coupled with other energy-saving techniques, can make a huge difference to a building’s – and ultimately a country’s – energy consumption.   Saint-Gobain Isover has been providing industry-leading thermal and acoustic insulation solutions to the local insulation market for over 55 years. Their mission is to produce energy-efficient insulation solutions that improve buildings’ thermal and acoustic comfort, while helping to protect the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The company’s two South…
In August, BASF opened a new production facility for concrete admixtures in Nairobi, Kenya. Both standard and custom-made admixtures from the MasterRheobuild® and the MasterGlenium® product line will be manufactured at the Kenya-based plant.   Dick Purchase, Head of BASF’s Regional Business Unit Construction Chemicals Middle East, West Asia, CIS and Africa, said that urban areas in Eastern Africa often experience transportation issues, so a local plant will be able to facilitate faster delivery of products to construction sites. Cement is also still expensive and scarce in Eastern Africa, and BASF products can help to make concrete mix designs more…
The Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA), together with World Bank Group member, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), and local rollout partners, the National Home Builder Registration Council (NHBRC), announced a new green building certification programme. The programme, called the “EDGE” rating system, is aimed at residential homes and its launch was announced at the GBCSA’s seventh annual convention, which was held in Cape Town on 10 to 12 September. EDGE stands for “Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies”, in the wake of the GBCSA’s My Green Home education and awareness campaign for the greening of homes. The programme…
Allan Gray’s new head office is an 18 500m² building in the V&A Waterfront’s cutting-edge No. 1 Silo development. The project was crowned as the overall winner of the annual South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA) Innovative Excellence in Property Development Awards for 2014.     The Silo District of the V&A Waterfront also includes No. 2 Silo, which is a residential development. In the near future, the historical Grain Silo and several other buildings around the Grain Silo will also be redeveloped to become the permanent home of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA). The V&A…
Despite what appears to be a saturated oil market in 2014, oil producers around the world will struggle to meet rising demand over the next few decades.   In its latest annual World Energy Outlook, the International Energy Agency (IEA) warned that the current period of oil abundance may be fleeting, and in fact, without heroic levels of production increases, oil markets will grow dangerously tight in the coming years.   Global oil demand is expected to increase by 37 percent by 2040, with a dominant proportion of that coming from developing countries – i.e. China and India. In fact,…
By Ashley Boag, Head of Energy and Natural Resource Industries at SAP Africa Africa is being touted as the next frontier that will supply natural and renewable resources to the global energy market, but many countries within sub-Saharan Africa are either struggling to provide access to energy and electricity for their citizens or can’t keep up with demand, resulting in rolling blackouts becoming a common part of people’s daily lives. Within the African energy sector there are a number of key issues that are preventing the continent from living up to its potential as a reliable contributor to the global…
A 4 000 ℓ oil tank with more than 22 percent water contamination has been purified to zero percent contamination within three weeks with the innovative Vacuum Dehydrator designed and manufactured by wear control specialist Filter Focus.Sugar giant TSB had been experiencing a continual moisture ingress problem on its 6.4 MW turbo alternator No 2 (TA2) tank at its Malelane operation in Mpumalanga. TSB mechanical engineer Prince Vilane notes that TA2 is used as a co-generation unit for exporting electrical power into the national grid. “Operating at 6500rpm with steam inlet conditions in the range of 31 bar(g) at 400oC,…
Tokyo hopes to make cheaper LNG and renewables the basis of its energy supply.   Since the disaster at its Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in March 2011, Japan has faced a highly uncertain energy future. Despite the government’s best attempts to begin restarting the country’s 48 nuclear reactors, popular sentiment has remained opposed to any such generalised restart. As a result, Japan is planning for a future where nuclear energy no longer plays a significant role in its energy mix.   Japan appears to be heading towards a two-pronged approach: a diversification of its LNG sourcing over the short…
Ophir Energy has announced a significant gas find with the Kamba-1 well in Block 4 of the Rovuma Basin, Tanzania. The Kamba prospect is estimated to hold 29,2bn cubic metres (bcm) of mean recoverable gas resources, bringing the 2C estimate for Blocks 1,3 and 4 to 484,2bcm. The discovery, if developed, will be used to feed the proposed Tanzania LNG export project.   The project – a joint development between Ophir and BG Group, and Block 2 partners Statoil and ExxonMobil – is expecting a final investment decision (FID) to be taken in 2016. The partners have put forward plans…
Tronox-owned Namakwa Sands smelter took a big leap by investing R242 million in a cogeneration (cogen) plant, but it has exceeded the company’s expectations in terms of energy cost savings.   The 13,6MW plant on South Africa’s West Coast uses waste gas that was previously flared into the atmosphere to produce electricity.   According to Tronox Namakwa Sands’ senior electrical engineer, Peter Haley, Namakwa Sands is on track to achieve its target of 70GWh/y of energy, the equivalent yearly energy consumption of a small town or about 6 000 households. Namakwa Sands’ operations have saved 10,3% in energy costs across…
Solar Capital De Aar, a joint venture between Italian renewable energy developer, Moncada Energy Group, and solar funder, Solar Capital Group, has completed the construction of the De Aar 3 solar farm.   The 85MW solar project located in the Northern Cape currently claims to be the largest solar farm in South Africa using thin film modules. The estimated annual power generation from the farm is 150 000MWh.   The joint venture between Moncada and Solar Capital began in October 2011 with the endeavour to build seven PV solar projects totalling 520MW between 2012 and 2016.   A Moncada subsidiary…
Johannesburg is almost certain to become the first city in South Africa to convert its fleet to carbon-free fuel within the next two years. The city began piloting the conversion in its Metrobus fleet at the beginning of this year.   Biogas, a product of anaerobic digestion of biomass which includes animal dung and grass cuttings, has already been identified by the city as the most likely energy source that will fast-track the economic hub of the country into the future. It contains between 50% and 70% methane, which is the component that aids the city’s drive to switch to…
The construction of the Sere wind farm reached new heights with the energising of the transformers of the first string of seven wind turbine generators, a move that paved the way for Eskom to proceed with the final commissioning of these turbines. The Sere wind farm is Eskom’s first large-scale renewable energy project, and forms part of their commitment to renewable energy and reducing their carbon footprint. Once completed, the plant will add 100MW to the national grid and contribute to saving nearly six-million tons of greenhouse gas emissions over the 20 years expected operating life, with average annual energy production of…
Transnet and the South African coal unit of mining company BHP Billiton agreed to a ten-year contract for exporting coal on rail. The agreement makes the Australia-based miner the first major customer to commit to a long-term take-or-pay contract with the South African state-owned freight transport company.   The agreement with BHP is a massive boost for certainty around Transnet’s capacity expansion programmes on the export coal line. Transnet is adding close to eight-million tons in capacity on the line from the current 73-million to 81-million tons over the next seven years.    The agreement with BHP equates to a…
South Africa is moving towards signing framework agreements with China and Japan, and is inviting would-be reactor vendor countries to participate in workshops to showcase their offerings as it moves through the pre-procurement phase of its nuclear new-build plans.   Energy minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson has recently signed similar agreements with Russia and France, and the country already has agreements in place with the USA and South Korea.   In parallel with the signature of the agreements, the Department of Energy is planning to hold “vendor parade workshops” with all vendor countries “that are ready and have accepted the invitation to…
In leading the way in generating power for Africa’s economic growth, the South African government has made a firm commitment to procure nuclear energy to boost the nation’s electricity generation capacity.   South Africa’s energy master plan states that the country’s energy mix should include 9 600MW of electricity generated by nuclear reactors – at a cost estimated to range from R300bn to more than R1 trillion for six to eight nuclear reactors. This nuclear plan has turned the spotlight onto the potential and possibilities for a nuclear future in Africa.   “Nuclear energy for Africa” is one of the…
South African company GreenSquared has launched the R3 roof planter, a modular roof system that can be pre-planted and pre-grown for an instant rooftop garden. Not only is the system manufactured specifically for the local harsh climate, but it was also designed to accommodate a pedestal system for 100% horizontal installations. The system is the result of a collaborative effort between horticulturists, architects, landscape architects, mechanical engineers and manufacturers. Some of the engineering and design attributes of the roof planter include the fact that there are no visual grid patterns typical of modular installations.  The roof and waterproofing membrane are…
A bank's relationship with the farmer has evolved beyond just leveraging the business to the hilt with loans. Today’s partnerships are forged with farmers, focused on holistic solutions to everyday and seasonal operational requirements. So says John Hudson, Nedbank Business Banking Divisional Manager of Agriculture for the Coastal and Inland Region. 'As a bank for businesses whose business values are entrenched in sustainability, our interest in deepening the relationship with agricultural communities takes heed of the environmental challenges that influence their future success,' says Hudson. One of its turnkey stakeholder relationships in the sector is with the Worldwide Fund for…
As South Africa’s economy and population continues to grow, so the demand for energy in the country is intensifying. In order to keep up with the demand for energy, as well as maintain a low carbon footprint, South Africa’s future energy supply will need to be dominated by sources that are reliable, sustainable, cleaner and cheaper than fossil fuels.   The success of recently completed solar and wind projects within the country confirms that South Africa needs to continue investing in renewables. This is according to Arthur Chien, VP of Talesun Energy, who says that South Africa’s renewable energy sector,…
South Africa has become one of the top up and coming destinations for renewable energy investment as it holds tremendous potential to rapidly grow its energy markets. This is according to Arthur Chien, VP of Talesun Energy, who says that economic expansion, the rapid pace of urbanisation, electricity and water scarcity, rising coal prices and the need to reduce carbon emissions, are the key factors driving the adoption of renewables such as photovoltaic (PV) solar in the country.   Moreover, he says that developments such as the REIPPP (renewable energy independent power producer procurement programme) model will stimulate investment in…
The official opening of the Department of Environmental Affairs’ new head office – a 6 Green Star SA Office Design rated building - in Pretoria today by President Jacob Zuma represents a milestone and significant step in green leadership, says Brian Wilkinson, CEO of the Green Building Council of SA (GBCSA).   “This landmark new Green Building represents a major commitment by the government to green building and sustainable development. We welcome the green leadership shown,” says Wilkinson.   “For any building to achieve a 6-star rating is a feat that should be celebrated because of the high standard of…
As many design and construction professionals know, building material cost estimations and reality can be two very different things. While there are many clients who are prepared to pay a premium price for long-term sustainability benefits that are achieved from green building practices, the perceived price premium for building green isn’t always within everyone’s reach. In this issue, we explore the issues and costs involved with green development.   In a book entitled The green building bottom line: The real cost of sustainable building by Martin Melaver and Phyllis Mueller, various green building experts – including editors, builders and engineers…
The 18,675sqm North Park in the Black River Park office park in Observatory, Cape Town, has become the first building in the country to be awarded an “existing building” certification from the Green Building Council of SA (GBCSA), under the council’s newly launched Green Star SA Existing Building Performance (EBP) pilot tool.   Black River Park, owned by Leaf Capital and Joubert Rabie, has made it their mission to secure green certification for the entire 75,000m2 office park - one of the largest business parks in the Western Cape. The park, consisting of a North and South Park, is home…
A twelve month long pre-feasibility study to investigate the viability of the Monont’sa Pumped Storage Power Plant in Lesotho has concluded that the scheme will provide significant power to South Africa’s rapidly developing neighbour when required to do so, said GIBB consultants – a member of the EDF Joint Venture (JV) commissioned by the Lesotho Electricity Company (LEC). GIBB worked in a JV with EDF (France), URS (UK), and local consultants Knight Piésold and Royal Haskoning DHV to produce the report, together with GWC, a Lesotho consulting engineering firm.  The 1,200 MW pumped-storage project, if executed will meet medium and long…
BMI View: Uganda's planned licensing round will attract some company interest given the prospective and  de-risked acreage, and an improved regulatory environment. However, we note that likely delays in producing first oil, notably infrastructure complications, continued resource nationalism and state intervention, could temper interest.   Uganda is set to end an eight-year moratorium on licensing with an upcoming licensing round targeted for December 2014, according to a statement by the Petroleum Exploration and Production Department.   The government suspended licensing in 2007, to allow time for the country to develop its oil and gas legislation. 17 blocks had originally been…
South African companies are doing well in reporting their emissions management and strategies, with the latest South African CDP climate change report highlighting improvements in climate change performance and disclosure, and placing South Africa as one of the top two responding geographic samples in the world.   The CDP, formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project, in partnership with the National Business Initiative (NBI) released the 8th edition of the South African CDP climate change report on 15 October, sponsored by KPMG, the South Africa Post Office and the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC).   The report highlights improvements in climate…
Companies need to look at their value chain emissions more strategically in order to build resilient value chains. There is a growing recognition that a business’s sustainability is dependent on the sustainability of its supply chain. To provide some guidance on value chain greenhouse gas reporting (Scope 3) the National Business Initiative (NBI) has released a reference guide that illustrates a six step approach to assist companies with identifying and reporting their most material Scope 3 emissions.   Supply chains are interlinked, dynamic and complex systems that are vulnerable to a number of risks. One aspect of identifying environmental and…
The conversion of sunlight into renewable energy, is not a new concept.  With its origins dating back centuries, man has clearly always been on a quest to harness the power of the sun and convert it into reusable energy and power. But the last few decades has seen a significant increase in the development of solar power.  Renewable energy has become much more common, with the use of solar steadily increasing.   The United States market in particular experienced a record year in 2013, showing unprecedented growth of 41%.  This has resulted in solar power being the second largest, but…
In just more than 40 years, population sizes of vertebrate species have dropped by half. This is one of the worrying findings in the tenth edition of WWF’s The Living Planet Report 2014 that was released at the beginning of October.  The Living Planet Index (LPI) measures more than 10,000 representative populations of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish. The publication, which reports on measures wildlife populations and humanity’s footprint on the Earth’s natural systems, shows that critical wildlife populations are declining while humanity’s ecological footprint continues to expand.  So much so that one and a half Earths would be…
In order for there to be any kind of significant change to South Africa’s service delivery issues, it is imperative that government implements an effective supply chain management strategy, supported by the appropriate skills, according to Professor Douglas Boateng of the Unisa Graduate School of Business Leadership (SBL). Professor Boateng is Africa’s first Extraordinary Professor for supply and value chain management.     “Forward-thinking governments are fully aware of the strategic importance of using effective supply chains,” says Prof Boateng. “Everything from waste collection to tourism to financial services, to health, education and service delivery in local government has a…
The 2014 Massmart Environmental Awards that took place on 9 October saw Mondi South Africa take the top honours as the inaugural winner.   The company’s contribution to wetland conservation, a 30% reduction in CO₂ emissions since 2004 and deriving over 60% of their operational energy requirements from renewables in their South African operations, all counted in the company’s favour.   Set to become an annual event, Massmart designed its Environmental Awards to promote responsible environmental practices in its supply chain and to recognise local suppliers for their ongoing commitment, exceptional performance and implementation of environmentally-sustainable business practices.   “We…
Meadow Feeds has embarked on a journey to remain a globally competitive animal feed company by implementing greener business practices that not only make financial business sense, but most importantly considers the environmental impact. The first step towards achieving this was to install smart metering and implementing an energy efficiency lighting retrofit project that delivered real value to the production facility whilst cutting energy costs. Regarded as market leaders in the animal feed industry in southern Africa, the company produces a variety of specialised diets and custom feed mixes for the poultry, dairy, ostrich and swine industries. Meadow's historical and…
Solsquare and Solar Heat Exchangers (Solar Heat) have signed an agreement to formalise a merger between the two companies.  The move brings together market leading skills in solar system Integration and energy efficient water heating applications to create a formidable force within the southern African renewable energy market.   The last few years have seen both companies expand at tremendous rates in response to a growing requirement for alternative, green and sustainable ways of generating power and heating water in South Africa. Strategic and operational synergies as well as a shared vision on how best to prepare for an inevitable…
LONDON: Leading High Street retailers are being urged to do their bit for the climate by closing the door on open refrigerated display units.   In its new report The Chilling Facts VI, the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) reveals that the take-up of climate-friendly refrigeration by supermarket chains is spreading faster and more widely than ever.   But the campaigning organisation is concerned that major retailers are missing an easy climate win - and the chance to significantly lower their energy bills - by shying away from fitting doors on refrigeration units.   EIA Senior Climate Campaigner and lead author…
Next time you get into your car and drive to the supermarket, think about how much energy you consume on an annual basis. It is widely assumed that Westerners are some of the world's worst energy pigs. While Americans make up just 5 percent of the global population, they use 20 percent of its energy, eat 15 percent of its meat, and produce 40 percent of the earth's garbage. Europeans and people in the Middle East, it turns out, aren't winning any awards for energy conservation, either. Oilprice.com set out to discover which countries use the most energy and why.…
Impact of Climate Efforts by All Cities Would Be Equivalent of Cutting World’s Annual Coal Use by More Than HalfTaking Cities’ Potential into Consideration Would Help Nations Set Far More Aggressive Targets to Fight Climate Change Than They Have Thus Far UN Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change Michael R. Bloomberg and C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40) Chair and Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes today announced new research that shows that if all cities took on aggressive new efforts to reduce building, transportation and waste energy use, they could potentially reduce annual greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by…
South Africa’s power supply is taking strain and with the country’s grid nearing peak demand, an intervention is needed. To this end, several alternatives are being explored but there is a growing need for more sustainable methods of power generation and demand side management.   According to the National Waste Information Baseline Report, of the total 108 million tonnes of waste, 90% goes to landfills. As a result South Africa’s landfills quickly run out of space and a viable solution presents itself in the form of waste to energy.   Dr Urishanie Govender, General Manager of the Environmental Services Sector…
Schneider Electric, a global specialist in energy management, has signed an agreement to design, install and manage the distributed control system (DCS) for the two concentrated solar power (CSP) plants, Khi Solar One and KaXu Solar One, located in the arid land near Upington in the Northern Cape province of South Africa. The solar project, which aims to create a clean energy future for South Africa by allowing the country to reduce its dependence on fossil fuel for power generation, specifically coal, is owned by international developer, Abengoa, in conjunction with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and the Khi Community…
According to the World Energy Outlook 2013 by the International Energy Agency (IEA), total world primary energy demand grew by 26% from 2000 to 2010, and to 2020 it is projected to grow less (by 20% under current policies scenario, and less under other scenarios). Growth to 2035 is 45% under current policies, and 33% under a more restrained scenario. Electricity growth is about double this in each case. Electricity demand almost doubled from 1990 to 2011, and is projected to grow 81% from 2011 to 2035 (from 19,004 TWh to 34,454 TWh) in the current policies scenario, and 69%…
Zimbabwe has endured power cuts for years because the state power utility produces only 1 100MW of power, half the national demand. In a bid to alleviate the problem, three Chinese firms led by Shanghai Electric Group are considering setting up a coal mine and a 1 200MW thermal power station in Western Zimbabwe. The companies signed a memorandum of understanding on the project on 17 September 2014, joining a growing list of Chinese enterprises seeking business opportunities in a country desperate for foreign investment.Jonathan Kadzura, chairman of the Southern Africa unit of Nan Jiang, told Reuters the first 300MW…
A new Nuclear Designers Forum was launched during the second half of 2014. The forum is a South African based networking community of engineers, scientists and technicians with experience in the nuclear environment. The forum aims to be a vehicle for discussions and a source of information to nuclear designers and those involved with the assessment and licensing of nuclear facilities in South Africa. The forum was started by a group of design engineers from different companies involved in local and international nuclear design projects, and identified that there may be a deficiency in the process of defining and demonstrating…
A new agreement was signed between Themeeco Group’s Zimbabwean subsidiary, OurSun Energy (Pvt) Ltd., and the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA). Under the MoU, a PPP will be established for a JV company, OurSun ZINWA.The newly created JV will focus on solar-powered water treatment developed by Themeeco Group through its sun-to-water solutions. OurSun ZINWA will provide solar power to the existing water treatment facilities, also implementing the design, construction and operation of the plants. The PPP will deploy sun-to-flow solutions for the agriculture sector using solar modules with water pumping and irrigation solutions.   Source: www.ae-africa.comhttp://ae-africa.com/read_article.php?NID=5831
Nigeria’s Minister of Power, Chinedu Nebo, says this country is considering offers of more than $20 billion for the assets of its national electricity transmission company as it struggles to provide adequate power to the country.   In an interview with Bloomberg Television Africa, Nebo said the sale of state-owned Transmission Co. of Nigeria may start “in a few years”.   “The interest now for transmission is over $20 billion. People are coming from everywhere,” Nebo told Bloomberg. Transmission is the only segment of the power industry that the government still controls as it seeks to curb regular blackouts in…
The municipal utility in Palo Alto, CA, set an ambitious target of 33% renewable energy by 2015 and to ultimately deliver a carbon-neutral electricity supply. They will reach 48% renewable power in 2017 and met the carbon-neutral goal starting last year.   How can a utility be carbon-neutral? The foundation of Palo Alto’s energy supply is hydropower, making up as much as half of their total electricity generation each year. But other renewable energy supplies the other half, at a time when most utilities have targets of 25% renewable or less.   Jim Stack, senior resource planner of Palo Alto…
The global offshore wind power market is expected to increase more than fivefold by 2020, according to the research and consulting firm GlobalData. Offshore wind is expected to become one of the largest renewable power market segments by 2020.   The company’s new report, entitled Offshore wind turbines and foundations – Global market size, market share, regulations and key country analysis to 2020, forecasts the market to grow from 7,1GW in 2013 to 39,9GW in 2020. Global offshore wind energy space registered substantial growth between 2006 and 2013, rising from 0,9GW in 2006 to 7,1GW in 2013, at a higher…
Professor Mosad Elmissiry, head of the African Union’s (AU’s) New Partnership for Africa’s Development (Nepad) Planning and Coordinating Agency, says the African hub of the United Nations Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL) initiative is aiming to have assisted 14 countries on the continent in developing energy action agendas and investment prospectuses by the end of 2014.   Elmissiry was speaking at a briefing ahead of the 2015 Africa Energy Indaba and noted that 43 of the 84 countries that opted to join SE4ALL, which aimed to provide all people with energy access by 2030, while also doubling the share of…
Part of Eskom’s justification for electricity price increases has also rested on the claim that historically South Africa has had some of the lowest tariffs in the world. In addition, the utility claims that despite the tariff increases since 2006/7, the country continues to have considerably low tariffs compared to other countries in the world, whether in the developed or developing world. A comparison of average electricity tariffs in 2011 using information obtained from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and past Frost & Sullivan analysis, proves this claim to be true. With further increases since 2011, and…
Part of Eskom’s justification for electricity price increases has also rested on the claim that historically South Africa has had some of the lowest tariffs in the world. In addition, the utility claims that despite the tariff increases since 2006/7, the country continues to have considerably low tariffs compared to other countries in the world, whether in the developed or developing world. A comparison of average electricity tariffs in 2011 using information obtained from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and past Frost & Sullivan analysis, proves this claim to be true. With further increases since 2011, and…
By Thembie Chehore, Research Associate for Energy & Environment at growth consulting firm Frost & Sullivan Africa The electricity sector in South Africa has been in a state of disruption over the last few years. The country’s power utility company, Eskom, has been under scrutiny for several reasons. Most of these reasons relate to the rolling blackouts, load-shedding episodes of 2007/8 and high levels of inefficiency. Constant tariff increases under the multiyear price determination (MYPD) programme is another major source of discontent towards the utility. The tariff increases have grown from a modest rate of 5.1% in 2006/7 to a…
Architect and energy specialist Henning Holm is renowned for his work in implementing solar energy systems into modern roofing projects. In a recent presentation about how solar photovoltaic systems can be part of the sustainability solution in urban designs, Holm said that while Eskom and Sasol are the biggest two polluters on the African content, consumers are part of the problem.   “Consumers definitely share the responsibility when it comes to contributing to CO2 emissions and pollution. For each MWh of electricity consumed, 1 056kg of CO2 is released into the air. With the carbon tax coming into effect in…
The concept of green roofs isn’t new, but architects and design professionals have only been giving these roofing systems more attention over the past two decades. As the concept of sustainability continues to grow and clients become more and more educated on the various benefits that green roofs have to offer, architects continue to raise the bar on what can be done.   The traditional idea of a “green roof” conjures images of an aerial view of a sparsely planted rooftop garden. Today sophisticated green roofs include everything from manicured landscapes and mazes to pathways, fountains and ponds that create…
Professionals in the building industry are increasingly under pressure to choose greener products. The problem, however, remains how to validate and navigate the sea of “sustainability” disclaimers that product manufacturers are offering. BASF has developed a new process for steering its portfolio of 50 000 products. Called the Sustainable Solution Steering Method, this tool is used to review and evaluate the various sustainability aspects of relevant products. It is an externally validated process that will help clients and prospective clients to measure the product’s contribution to sustainability. The products are then sorted into four categories based on results, namely accelerators,…
Frost & Sullivan finds that prospecting of previously unexploited oil and gas resources, particularly in East Africa, boosts ACS spending   Capital spending on automation and control systems (ACS) within the sub-Saharan oil and gas industry is set to increase exponentially. The rising focus on process optimisation, discovery of new reserves, and expansion of the regional infrastructure is anticipated to generate fresh opportunities for equipment suppliers.   New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, Automation and Control Solutions in Sub-Saharan Africa's Oil and Gas Industry—An Analysis of 3 Leading Countries, finds that the market earned revenues of $151.8 million in 2013…
For two decades the once popular tidal pool in Margate on the KwaZulu Natal South Coast was non-functional but, thanks to the Margate Urban Renewal Project, it has now been restored to its former glory. By supplying one of its highly effective admixtures, SikaPlast V210, as well as its Macro Fibres, Sika played a critical role in this challenging R1.8 million project, planned and managed by Royal Haskoning DHV. The contractor, Innovative Concrete Solutions was responsible for the overall operation and Kencrete Readymix Concrete supplied the concrete, containing the SikaPlast V210 admixture. SikaPlast V210 is a mid-range water reducer for…
Majority of South African Respondents View Climate Change as a Severe Threat to Mankind, Rule Human Activity as Primary Cause   Concerns about climate change, its long-term effects and political counteractions are among the key issues addressed by respondents to a Global Challenges Foundation survey to understand public views on climate change, poverty and armed conflicts. South Africa joins eight other countries in responding that climate change is a threat to mankind and both political and personal actions are necessary to counter its effects.   In today’s release, the Global Challenges Foundation provides a comparative, international look at public views…
Imagine cruising through South Africa’s beautiful landscape fuelled by the gift of the country’s abundant solar power . . . That inspiring vision behind the Sasol Solar Challenge, a futuristic experiment in prototypes and team spirit running from Pretoria to Cape Town between 27 September and 4 October, is supported all the way by Europcar SA. “We’re excited to be partnering the Sasol Solar Challenge as the teams’ innovative designs are tested,” says Europcar Chief Commercial Officer Martin Lydall. “In this special challenge, we see three vital hopes for the future of SA as a country and an economy brought…
Not even the specter of a spillover of Islamic extremism from Somalia can dampen the atmosphere in Kenya, where commercial oil production is expected to begin in 2016 and discovery after discovery has made this the hottest and fastest-paced hydrocarbon scene on the continent.    When it comes to new oil and gas frontiers, today it’s all about Africa. And more specifically, it’s all about the eastern coast, with Kenya the clear darling--not just because it’s outpacing neighboring Uganda by leaps and bounds, but also because despite some political instability hiccups and the threat of militant al-Shabaab, it’s still one…
A recent report from Greenpeace found that China's coal consumption declined in the first half of this year and new Chinese government data suggests that the country's coal imports have dropped. Estimates indicate that by the end of the year, China's coal imports could be 8 percent below 2013 levels.   China imported 18.86 million tonnes of coal in August, the lowest level since September 2012.   Part of the reduced demand is due to a slowing Chinese economy. After years of double-digit growth rates, China's GDP expanded by just 7.7 percent in 2013, and it could struggle to hit…
Construction of approximately R250 million worth of urgently needed bulk water infrastructure is now underway to the north of Durban.   Martin Bright, project manager for the Northern Aqueduct Augmentation (NAA) project, confirmed that a second contract was awarded to Esorfranki Construction in August.   This 6km section of the pipeline stretches from Duffs Road to the Phoenix 2 reservoir and is valued at approximately R90 million.   Construction of the first segment of pipeline for the NAA – also by Esorfranki Construction – began in January and 10 kms has already been completed.  This segment extends from Phoenix 2…
Regional interconnections and oil discoveries to drive industry growth in the region   Africa has one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, and East Africa represents the second-fastest growing region within Africa. However, East Africa’s power sector is highly underdeveloped and has the lowest electricity access rate on the continent. Further, electricity demand is projected to grow faster than the expected expansion rate of the transmission and distribution (T&D) networks in the region. Other key challenges include unreliable and weak infrastructure, inadequate project funding, non-cost-reflective tariffs, and a critical skills shortage. Nevertheless, the T&D industry in Kenya, Tanzania and…
By Kristina Mohlin, Visiting Economist; Beia Spiller, Economist; and James Fine, Senior Economist Source: Duncan Rawlinson   At EDF, our eyes are fixed firmly on improving local air quality and reducing global warming caused by fossil-fuel based electricity. We have high hopes for the role that clean, renewable, and distributed energy solutions like rooftop solar can play in “decarbonizing” our energy system. To get there, the price must be right for residential solar to flourish. With recent price drops (e.g., the cost of solar panels has declined by around 75 percent since 2008) and innovative new financing tools, residential solar…
Dedicated energy logger for performing energy surveys and load studies   Comtest, Fluke’s local representative, has announced a new logger specifically designed for energy conscious consumers - the Fluke 1730 Three-Phase Electrical Energy Logger – rated for its simplicity in discovering sources of electrical energy waste. Its ability to profile energy usage across facilities allows the user to identify opportunities for energy savings and provides easy-to-understand data required to take the appropriate action.  The 1730 shows when and where energy is being consumed in the facility, from the service entrance to the individual circuits.  It compares multiple data points over time…
Dow Achieves Sustainability Milestone by Delivering on ‘Breakthroughs to World Challenges’ Goal   SOUTH AFRICA (10 September, 2014) — According to the UN, the world’s population is expected to reach approximately 8.3 billion by 2030, and society will need 50 percent more food, 45 percent more energy, and 30 percent more water to sustain this growth. Science will play a critical role in addressing these global challenges, and Dow (NYSE: DOW) is dedicated to innovating science-driven solutions. With its newest breakthrough, BETAMATE™ Structural Adhesives, Dow delivers on an aggressive target it set in 2006 to introduce three “Breakthroughs” that will…
The new BRICS bank would offer a financing alternative to both entities, with initial subscribed capital of US$50 billion for financing infrastructure and sustainable development projects and US$100 billion in a Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA) to provide assistance to members experiencing financial difficulties. Officials have stated they would like to launch the first lending activities in 2016. In theory, the NDB could prove quite beneficial for the global economy, but how it will work in practice remains to be seen. The United States and Europe have largely dominated the leadership of the World Bank and IMF, and those in the…
The new Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) head office in Pretoria is a testament to green design. Created by Boogertman + Partners, the building has been awarded a six-star Green Star South African Office Design V1 rating by the Green Building Council of South Africa.   In the previous issue of Walls & Roofs Magazine, we focused on material selection and green features of the building. In this issue, we are zoning in on the thought process and design considerations that form part of creating the first six-star rated green building in the country’s capital. The building is the first…
A landmark building, owned and developed by Growthpoint Properties Limited, Grundfos, recently scooped a Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) five-star Green Star SA Office Design rating, as well as a South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA) award. Grundfos has become the first industrial facility in South Africa to receive this five-star rating by the Green Building Council of South Africa. To be acknowledged by such coveted and prestigious accolades is most definitely a feather in the cap of the world’s largest circulator pump manufacturer, whose “green” ethos is of utmost importance.   The rating and award officially places…
A state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant has been unveiled at an official ceremony in Jeffreys Bay. The existing treatment plant, an oxidation pond system was constantly exceeding its capacity and producing an inferior treated effluent quality, as a result of the considerable growth in the area. The Jeffreys Bay WWTP was in urgent need of being upgraded.Jeffreys Bay is a constituent part of the Kouga Local Municipality in the Cacadu District, in the Eastern Cape Province. Speaking at the launch, on behalf of the consulting engineers that were appointed for the project, Willem Hofmeyr, Technical Director, Water & Civil Infrastructure, for…
Katie Ross, Carbon Advisor at Promethium Carbon, a carbon advisory firm Mining has always had a substantial impact on the environment and South Africa has always been one of the most affected.  Prior to the enactment of the 1991 Minerals Act, mining companies took either a reactive approach to land rehabilitation and complied with minimum requirements, or only superficially rehabilitated mining affected land, post mine closure. This has left South Africa with a huge economic and environmental burden, not to mention the long-termresidual risks to communities residing in the vicinity of un-rehabilitated mining areas. Progress has been made regarding mining land rehabilitation…
The heaviest lift executed on all mining projects completed in Mozambique was made possible after twelve months of planning by Kentz Engineers and Constructors Ltd working on the Kentz Moatize Expansion: Nacala Port (MENP) project.  The team designed and built the critical erection trestle to support the 750 ton-Liebherr crane that lifted into place a 250 ton ‘wagon tippler’.  It will off-load double train wagons carrying 130 tons of coal with 65 tons each in addition to off-loading for Brazilian resource company Vale. Capable of handling 18 million tons of coal per annum, the wagon tippler is singularly the most…
The much anticipated launch of the South African Women in Energy Network (SAWIEN) held in August 2014 offered the prominent women in attendance another exciting surprise, with the announcement of the first annual SA Women in Energy Award.According to Marlene van Rooyen, founder of SAWIEN, this award celebrates extraordinary women and validates them for their hard work in advancing the energy landscape. It identifies an individual who is an outstanding exemplar in the local energy industry. It not only recognises achievers, but also encourages and inspires other women. “The awarding of this prize is a matter of enormous prestige and…
Acting on the need for women’s unique role within the energy sector in South Africa, Marlene van Rooyen, longstanding Editor of Walls & Roofs in AFRICA, founding Editor of 25Degrees and WATER360, formed the newly launched SA Women in Energy Network (SAWIEN). This much anticipated launch was held at the picturesque Forum Homini Hotel and Roots Restaurant, Letamo Game Estate in Gauteng on 26 August 2014. A dynamic range of prominent female industry players within the energy sector attended to what turned out to be a highly successful launch. SAWIEN is a networking organisation focused on bringing together women in…
Who could have ever imagined that North America would surpass Saudi Arabia as the world’s largest producer of oil and natural gas liquids? A decade ago, that would have seemed laughable. Yet that’s exactly what has happened; and it’s not just Saudi Arabia that has been left in North America’s dust -- Russia has, too. The surge in North American oil and gas production is arguably the most important development in energy over the last decade. That’s the good news. The not so good news is that North America doesn’t have nearly enough oil and gas pipelines to accommodate its…
Oil and gas project developers on the African continent need to develop strategies in order to protect their infrastructure during the design phase of the project, said coatings and linings provider Sharpshell Industrial Solutions’ Godfrey Pangeti at the recent Gas Africa conference. Pangeti said it was in the developers’ best interest to select an appropriate protection technology for assets, rather than option for the cheapest, seeing as the bulk of oil and gas infrastructure was commonly made from highly corrosive metal or steel. “Buying unsuitable materials can result in the unbudgeted downtime of assets, expensive alternative storage and transport options,”…
Eskom recently announced that the French firm Areva will be replacing six steam generators at South Africa’s Koeberg nuclear plant. The project is part of broader plans to expand the plant’s life from 30 to 40 years. In a press release, Eskom reported the replacement will take place during a 2018 maintenance outage. The board of the state-controlled utility announced the contract award on 15 August, following consultation with third-party advisors. They did not announce the project’s cost or other details about the deal. Areva (formerly Framatome) built the twin reactors at Koeberg, north of Cape Town, completing them in…
Bluesea Energy Ltd, a Nairobi-based company, recently announced that it will produce 40MW with its first wind power plant in Meru, which is set to be completed in the second half of 2015. In an interview with the Thompson Reuters Foundation, the company’s chairman, David Ikaira, said: “Kenya is moving away from traditional methods of generating power such as thermal, to clean methods of producing the same using our wind resources, which is more innovative and cuts carbon emissions.”In 2012, Bluesea announced that it would invest over $100 million to various renewable energy projects. The company has applied to the…
According to a report by Greenpeace China, the country’s plan to build coal-to-gas plants to reduce carbon dioxide emissions may actually exacerbate pollution, which in recent years has caused public health scares and driven environmentalists to protest on the streets and online. If China’s government approves the 50 planned coal-to-gas projects within the next decade, the People’s Republic will emit over one billion tons of CO2 a year. This means the coal-to-gas plants would produce nearly double the emissions limit set by environmental regulators for the proposed projects. The gas that would be produced by the plants has – in…
On 13 August, the state-owned power utility Eskom said the long-term sustainability of the group and the security of the national power grid remained “at the heart of everything we do”. Eskom’s group executive for sustainability, Dr Steve Lennon, addressed a media and stakeholder information session, saying that it would take the South African power system two weeks to recover if there was a nationwide blackout. “The entire country’s blackout recovery time is two weeks, assuming that everything goes smoothly,” said Lennon, before adding that the consequences would be severe for every industry sector if the country were to experience…
South Africa’s Industrial Development Corporation’s (IDC) specialist in green industries, Raoul Goosen, says the country has large tracts of underutilised land suitable for biofuel crops. According to Goosen, the Department of Energy and the Southern African Biogas Industry Association are working together on an incentive scheme for biogas, which is expected to be in place by 2015. David Sonnenberg, the founder of Uhuru, says that while South Africa had small natural gas resources, biomethane produced from the conversion of biogas from feedstocks such as manure, sewage and crops could be used in the same way as natural gas for electricity…
The University of Johannesburg’s Solar Team has unveiled Ilanga II, a solar vehicle that is set to compete in the 2014 Sasol Solar Challenge. According to Warren Hurter, the project manager of the UJ Solar Team, Ilanga II is one of the most advanced solar-powered vehicles produced by UJ students and industry partners to date. “We are more than ready to take on our international and local competitors with this vehicle, which echoes values of aerodynamic success and high performance. In short, Ilanga II is light and it is fast,” says Hurter. The UJ Solar Team, which is designed to…
Alstom’s Dr Lawrence Jones, vice-president for utility innovations and infrastructure resilience, has attended several renewable energy conferences in Africa and in other parts of the world over the past year. The promising economic prospects for sub-Saharan Africa are also highlighted in the Africa Progress Panel 2014 report titled Grain, fish, money – Financing Africa’s green and blue revolutions. In an article for Renewable Energy World, Jones writes that six of the world’s fastest growing economies are in sub-Saharan Africa. In spite of the positive economic news, currently 74% of the population has no access to electricity, and should the current…
By Neil Cameron, Area General Manager, Johnson Controls Building Efficiency Africa Regular maintenance can ensure that HVAC equipment remains efficient, but it could also cut energy costs. Part failure can seriously impact the performance of equipment, so it makes good sense to keep an eye on key components that have the greatest energy impacts. However, there are also significant benefits to be gained by switching to a whole-building-system approach, applying best practices and implementing effective scheduled maintenance. Studies show that:• Use of best practices in building maintenance and operations can reduce energy use by 10 to 20 percent. i• Poor…
New Report “The Global Market for Transformers 2014 - 2050” highlights total installed base of Power Transformer Units to increase by 57,000 between 2015 and 2020, and the installed base of Distribution Transformer Units to increase by 9.6 million in the same period. A new report "The Global Market for Transformers 2014- 2050" forecasts steady global growth between 2015 and 2020, with the installed base of Power Transformers likely to increase by 16.4% and the installed base of Distribution Transformers to increase by 6.8%. During the same period, we forecast that global generating capacity will increase from 5.9 million MW…
The Natural Hydration Council (NHC), a not for profit organisation dedicated to researching the science and communicating the facts about healthy hydration in the United Kingdom, has produced a PET Plastic Water Bottles fact sheet to help address some of the myths around bottled water that often get reported. This coincides with the formation of its Technical Working Group, which will address technical and regulatory issues that affect bottled water producers in the UK. The group will also support the NHC Communications Group’s activities by ensuring the facts related to the quality of naturally sourced waters are communicated effectively. It…
The Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) gazetted draft regulation on 18 July 2014 with respect to the mandatory reporting of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Government has indicated that companies will need to calculate and report on their carbon footprint on an annual basis in light of the coming carbon tax in 2016. This National Atmospheric Emission Reporting Regulation draft announced the internet-based system, called the National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory System (NAEIS), which can be used to submit greenhouse gas and air pollutant inventory to the authorities. “Businesses will face the responsibility of calculating their carbon footprint but have not yet…
By Jack Ward, MD of Powermode The spiralling cost of electricity and the search for alternative power sources have led many companies and individuals to opt for renewable energy and ultimately solar power. Roof-top solar PV (photovoltaic) systems are among the most practical. They’re in use the world over by those looking to act responsibly to boost their energy needs, take control of their carbon footprints in a world of finite resources, and save money in the long term. At the core of any solar PV system are its solar panels or ‘modules’. Choosing an appropriate solar PV system to…
Over 220 African business leaders in Cape Town for GIL 2014: Africa - the Growth, Innovation and Leadership congress CAPE TOWN, South Africa – 20 August, 2014 - It has been noted that innovation is no longer an option, but rather a necessity. Companies that are on top of market changes, and are maintaining their competitive advantage, are those organisations creating and adopting innovative business models. This was one of the key messages from Frost & Sullivan's GIL 2014: Africa - The Global Community of Growth, Innovation and Leadership annual congress attended by over 220 industry leaders in Cape Town.…
The Clicks Group saw the National Energy Barometer Survey (NEBS) as an opportunity to collate energy use information for entry, whilst being able to see what the Group’s energy baseline is, so that it can improve its performance on energy-saving projects year-on-year. This effort awarded Clicks with the top performer in the Head Office NEBS category for the 2012 utility year. NEBS’s focus is on new and existing buildings and the whether they are occupied and operated in an energy-efficient manner.To see where your hotel, shopping centre, car dealership, airport, general office building, head office, retail store or hospital ranks,…
With a history of expertise that spans more than 100 years, local company Elster Kent Metering (Pty) Limited (“Elster Kent Metering”), is dedicated to providing innovative and quality metering solutions throughout the continent of Africa. Kent water meters have had a presence in South Africa dating back more than a century to the early 1900’s, under the auspices of the parent company Elster Metering Holdings PLC (UK). Through a succession of name changes the organisation has remained a leader in its field, from 1945 when the company George Kent (SA) (Pty) Ltd was incorporated in South Africa. In July 1968…
The UK Department For International Development (DFID), in partnership with the National Business Initiative (NBI), a voluntary coalition of South African and multinational companies, committed to working towards sustainable growth and development in South Africa, is enabling corporates to provide their suppliers with free energy advice and assessments. As part of this initiative, Woolworths engaged 150 of its suppliers to participate in energy audits fully paid for by the NBI/DFID programme. Their progress to date has established them as one of the leading South African companies in this initiative. Val Geen, Head of Energy at the NBI says, “We are…
Ukraine's next crisis will be a devastatingly economic one, as violent conflict destroys critical infrastructure in the east and brings key industry to a halt, furthering weakening the energy sector by crippling coal-based electricity production. The Ukrainian military's showdown with separatists in the industrial east has forced coal mines to severely cut production or close down entirely. This has led to an electricity crisis that can only be staunched by cutting domestic production along with exports to Europe, Crimea, and Belarus -- or worse, getting more imports from Russia. In the coal centers of Ukraine's industrial east—Luhansk and Donetsk—fighting has…
The analysis of vibration is the most significant indicator of operating conditions in motors and rotating machinery. TIA ONLINE has introduced a new, hand-held, digital vibration test meter, the TAMAT VIB1400 that allows operators to detect anomalies in the bearings as well as balancing and inadequate alignment, before they become significant problems. Predictive maintenance has proven to be the most convenient and economical practice undertaken by industry, that avoids unnecessary costs associated with preventive maintenance schedules, and goes a long way to protect the system from unforeseen stoppages. The TAMAT VIB-1400 is portable and allows for an organised predictive maintenance…
While we fixate on sexy headlines about Chinese military threats in the South China Sea, for instance, or Washington 'lifting the ban' on crude oil exports, we miss the bigger stories—and we miss the reality. China's relentless resource quest has the greatest impact on trading prices, which may not make for headline news, but is a very important reality, while the stories about the US lifting the crude oil ban were just wrong. Michael Levi, David M. Rubenstein Senior Fellow for Energy and the Environment and Director of the Maurice R. Greenberg Center for Geoeconomic Studies, navigates us through today's…
South Africa’s Department of Energy has a ZAR7.4-billion energy budget and ZAR850-million of these funds will be dedicated to nuclear energy. Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Petterson recently delivered the Energy Department’s Budget Vote on 21 July and she said that ZAR850-million has been allocated to the department and its relevant agencies in order to undertake further research and development, especially in regard to safety matters.The department will also be pursuing regulation for the handling of hazardous materials, in terms of international obligations, and the development of nuclear policies and legislation to ensure the peaceful use of nuclear energy.Of the appropriation of…
Apple has reportedly purchased another parcel of land to build a third solar farm near its Maiden, N.C. data center. New Hampshire, USA -- Apple has made quite a green turnaround in the past couple of years. After receiving a “D” on Greenpeace’s “How Green Is Your Cloud” report back in 2011, which ranks companies in four categories that consist of energy transparency, infrastructure siting, energy efficiency, and renewables and advocacy, Apple announced that it would power its company with 100 percent renewable energy. Since then, the tech company claims that it now completely powers all of its energy-sucking data…
By Lood Welgemoed, Boogertman and Partners It never ceases to amaze me how architects still don’t apply the basic principles of sustainable design from the very first conceptual sketch of a project. I see this in large commercial buildings and particularly also at domestic scale. What they don’t seem to realise, is that the occupant of the building, whether a business or a family, will suffer the consequences long after the architect has moved on. These might include inflated energy bills due to enhanced cooling and/or heating, or simply poor comfort levels. We all know that people are more productive…
The new Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) head office in Pretoria, designed by Boogertman + Partners, is rapidly burgeoning on the Pretoria skyline. The building recently received the first six-star Green Star South African Office Design V1 certification from the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) for a government building and it is set to achieve a six-star “As Built” rating once completed. The site location, which is bound to the east by Steve Biko Street, to the north by Soutpansberg Road and to the west by Oumashoop Street in the suburb of Arcadia, is seen as a gateway…
Elster Kent Metering (Pty) Limited (“Elster Kent Metering”) was in attendance at the recent Water Institute of Southern Africa (WISA) conference, held in Nelspruit, Mpumalanga. With the theme of Water Innovations, the company promoted their latest water metering technology to a contingent of more than 1800 industry delegates.The company designs and manufactures world class systems and technologies that distribute, measure, monitor and manage water accurately and efficiently. Elster Kent Metering offers products, services, advice and expertise which contribute to the more efficient use of the southern African region’s water resources. Hybrid water meter rangeOne of Elster Kent Metering’s newest product…
By Paul Burkhardt Draft regulations on oil and gas exploration in South Africa will be ready within weeks so that companies can comment on the proposed rules, Mineral Resources Minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi said. “May well be that the industry is satisfied, is comfortable with the regulations,” Ramatlhodi said in an interview today on the Eirik Raude, a drilling rig hired by Total SA (FP) that’s in waters off the country’s southern coast. The government would then “move forward, allow them to do more drilling,” he said. Proposed changes to South Africa’s 2002 Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act include giving…
According to the South African Department of Water Affairs, South Africa is a water scarce country and is ranked as the 30th driest country in the world, with annual rainfall levels of about 50% of the world average. Many parts of the country have either already reached or are fast approaching the point at which all viable freshwater resources will be fully utilised. Arthur Chien, VP of Talesun Energy, a leading supplier of solar energy solutions, says that amidst the already impaired water situation in South Africa, the energy sector uses large amounts of water for electricity generation as part…
In July Africa’s largest wind farm was inaugurated at Jeffreys Bay. The Eastern Cape wind farm is expected to supply enough clean, renewable energy to meet the needs of over 100 000 South African households. Mark Pickering, general manager of the Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm, said their team is proud to be contributing about 460 000 megawatt hours (MWh) per year of electrical energy to the national grid. “It’s remarkable to consider that by the end of this year the country will have more than 400 turbines reaching into the sky, all helping to reduce the use of fossil fuels…
A one-day conference focusing on opportunities in the sub-Saharan African oil and gas industry took place alongside the Oil & Gas Africa 2014 Expo, which was held on 2 July at the Cape Town International Convention Centre. “Over the next five years, interest in offshore and onshore oil and gas exploration in South Africa is set to increase dramatically as extraction technology improves, and the need for an alternative source to the unstable Middle East region increases,” says John Victor, a representative of the conference organiser, Fair Consultants. Exhibitors from technology-rich countries such as India, Norway, Poland and the United…
With winter temperatures dropping and electricity demands rising, many residents in Gauteng were left without electricity for days during the month of July. Eskom’s promise of not cutting the power has thus been broken (however, many parts of Johannesburg that are supplied by City Power are also experiencing electricity supply problems).Electricity supply in parts of Soweto, Eldorado Park and Johannesburg’s northern suburbs has been disrupted. Lerato Moloi from Soweto says her three-year-old daughter has become sick due to the cold weather. “I’m frustrated, I’m livid. It is the coldest time of the year and I’m without hot water. I’m without…
Australian oil and gas major Santos recently announced the first oil production from the Dua project in offshore Vietnam. The project, which is a three-well subsea tieback to the existing Chim Sáo facilities in Block 12W of the Nam Con Son basin, was sanctioned in August 2012 and is expected to deliver about 8 000 bbl/d of oil for the first 12 months of production. “Dua is a high-value brownfield addition to Santos’ portfolio and provides a boost to our existing oil production in Vietnam through the Chim Sao facilities,” said Santos’ VP for Asia, Western Australia and the Northern…
Former Ghanaian President, John Agyekum Kufuor, says African states should take urgent steps to develop the Grand Inga Hydroelectric Project on the Congo River in the Democratic Republic of Congo to generate environmentally-friendly but cheap and sustainable power. Kufuor was speaking at the opening of an international meeting on “Energy, environment and investment” at Port Harcourt in Nigeria. Under the auspices of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), Africa needs to team up with the international community to develop the Inga Project. At an estimated cost of US$80 billion, the project is seen as the world’s largest proposed hydroelectric…
World Bank Group member, IFC, recently announced that it will invest up to US$100 million in ACWA Power. The money will be used to significantly increase the amount of power it generates from renewable sources and meet growing energy demand throughout the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). This investment will support ACWA Power’s plans to expand into emerging markets where the demand for power has prompted governments to plan for heavy investment in the power sector, especially renewable energy, over the next decade. Paddy Padmanathan, president and chief executive officer of ACWA Power, said the company will continue to…
About US$80 billion is wasted each year due to the energy-inefficient technology that is used to power 14 billion electronic devices around the world. These include modems, game consoles and printers, and are just a few of the items that our increasingly digital economies are powering inefficiently. According to a new report by the International Energy Agency, entitled “More data, less energy: Making network standby more efficient in billions of connected devices”, the problem will considerably worsen, with an estimated US$120 billion wasted by 2020. In 2013 a relatively small portion of the world’s population relied on these devices to…
South Africa has talked about expanding the country’s nuclear energy supply before, but plans were halted due to the costs involved in expanding nuclear power plants. South Africa looks set to go ahead with more investments in nuclear energy and experts say this is long overdue. In President Jacob Zuma’s recent State of the Nation address, he said South Africa would fast-track nuclear power procurement. He said the country needs a radical transformation of the energy sector to develop a sustainable energy mix.With the current electricity demands that outweigh the country’s supply, it seems that South Africa is now ready…
The confrontation between Russia and the West took a turn for the worse with the downing of a Malaysian airliner on July 17, and that could spell trouble for several major oil companies operating in Russia. Just one day earlier, U.S. President Barack Obama slapped sanctions on Russia over its ongoing role in the destabilization of Ukraine. The sanctions prohibited American banks from issuing loans with a maturity of over 90 days to four key Russian companies – Rosneft, Novatek, Gazprombank, and VEB. "Because Russia has failed to meet the basic standards of international conduct, we are acting today to…
Much larger than Eagle Ford and once thought to have reached peak production, new technology has brought us full circle back to the Permian Basin in Texas and New Mexico, where the recent shift to horizontal well drilling has rendered this play the unconventional ground zero. Determining where the next real oil boom will be depends largely on following the technology, and while the Permian Basin has been slower than others to switch from vertical well drilling to horizontal drilling, horizontal has now outpaced vertical, and investors are lining up to get in on the game. Until about 12 years…
Ernesta Swanepoel While the impacts and effects of climate change vary, environmental degradation, sea-level rise, conflict over resources, droughts and floods may ultimately result in people moving, either temporarily or permanently, within or across borders. The first report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) mentioned human migration back in 1990, and in 2014 an entire chapter was dedicated to migration and the mobility dimensions of human security in the IPCC’s 5th Assessment Report.[1] Yet, we often forget that environmental factors have for decades lead to movement, a natural human adaptation strategy to environmental change and variability. Human movement…
Scatec Solar, the integrated independent solar power producer, has started commercial operations of a 40 MW solar PV plant in South Africa, increasing its installed capacity in the country to 115 MW. The Linde project, located in the Northern Cape region, is the second utility scale solar PV plant Scatec Solar has completed under the South African Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Program and the first of its two projects awarded in the second round. The completion of the Linde project coincided with the announcement that South Africa has now connected more than half a gigawatt of utility-scale solar power,…
By Vis Reddy, principal scientist and partner, and Paul Jorgensen, environmental scientist, SRK Consulting (SA) Durban: Mines in African countries should not wait for the inevitable tightening up of measures on climate change and carbon emissions before exploring greener energy options on mining sites, especially as there are significant cost savings to be made from fast-evolving renewable technologies. Many operations must make their own power supply arrangements, as they are too remote to access the national electricity grid or the supply of electricity is not reliable. This usually involves establishing diesel generation on site, an option which both increases energy…
Tough jobs are no match for Xylem Water Solutions South Africa’s new range of Lowara e-NSC pumps. The new Lowara e-NSC heavy duty end suction pumps are designed to take on the most challenging water related problems at the lowest costs. By combining high efficiency with high flexibility in terms of installation, material options and temperature, the new Lowara e-NSC series is the natural choice for a vast number of Industrial and Building applications. The robust design, different bearing frame sizes and stainless steel replaceable wear-rings ensure a long service life. The Lowara e-NSC pump’s easy maintenance will also reduce…
In the face of episodic load shedding, rising electricity costs and the desire to lessen carbon footprints by using less fossil fuel generated power, local industry needs to embrace clean, affordable and renewable solar energy. Schletter is striving to drive this movement by assisting small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in installing solar photovoltaic (PV) systems on their rooftops. Solar PV systems help industry achieve their energy efficiency and cleaner technology objectives. According to Abdul-Khaaliq Mohamed, Head Electrical Engineer at Schletter South Africa, the private sector always needed to initiate the switch to the adoption and entrenchment of sustainable energy use…
Case Study: University KZN Westville CampusLocation: Durban, South AfricaSystem: REHAU Ecotec 60mm The University of Kwazulu-Natal invited REHAU to participate in a national pilot study on energy saving building methods, undertaken at the Oliver Tambo building of the University’s Westville campus. The purpose of the study is to observe the success of double-glazed uPVC windows and externally applied thermal insulation to an existing building to achieve financial energy cost savings. Nine north-facing, first floor aluminium windows were replaced with 20 mm double-glazed uPVC windows manufactured from the UV stable REHAU Ecotec system. The Cape Windows Group, a REHAU Authorised Partner,…
ENSafrica Environmental Department (This article is intended as part of a trio, the combined thrust of which is that the practice of South African environmental law has developed, particularly in recent years, to take a more central role in commercial decisions and as a component of broader commercial legal practice. This is the final article in the series.) The law of more sustainable miningAs we move towards the middle of the second decade of the twenty-first century, the mining industry is facing a range of new challenges. For various reasons traditional approaches to mining are being re-assessed and measured against…
Making green building history in South Africa, the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) has announced that No. 1 Silo at V&A Waterfront in Cape Town has been given country’s first ever 6-Star Green Star SA “As Built” rating. No.1 Silo received a 6-Star Green Star SA – Office v1 As Built rating. No. 1 Silo also previously received the Western Cape’s first 6-star Green Star SA rating for Design from the GBCSA. This makes it the first development to receive six green stars for both its design and the completed building. The 18,500sqm office building was designed and…
EcoStandard, a joint venture between Jeffares & Green Consulting & Environmental Engineers and Rayne Neave of EcoExhibit, was named winner of the Green Economic Modelling category in Mail & Guardian’s Greening the Future 2014 Awards at a ceremony held in Sandton on 24 June. This is the eleventh year the Mail & Guardian have hosted this highly contested event which seeks to highlight best practice projects, showcasing innovation in renewable energy, action to combat climate change and strategic management of natural resources. EcoStandard won the award for a “non-profit organisation that promotes economic growth and job creation in conjunction with…
Members of the public have until Monday (6 July 2014) to comment on the National Greenhouse Gas Inventory for South Africa, for the period 2000 – 2010. The Inventory was published for public comment by the Minister of Environmental Affairs, Ms Edna Molewa, on 6 June 2014 in Gazette No 37701. A draft report on the National Greenhouse Gas Inventory for South Africa was received by Cabinet on 26 June 2014. The report is in line with the United National Framework convention on Climate Change which South Africa ratified in 1997. According to this Convention countries are meant submit their…
Violence in Mexico could thwart hopes of a budding shale boom, as oil and gas companies operating in Texas may think twice about moving south of the border. Mexico holds an estimated 545 trillion cubic feet of technically recoverable shale gas and 13 billion barrels of shale oil, but progress in developing those resources has been slow. The obstacles to kick-starting Mexico's shale industry have dampened the once lively enthusiasm surrounding Mexico's historic energy reform. Mexico passed legislation last year that opened up the country's oil and gas sector to private investment, ending a 75-year monopoly by state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos…
On 11 March 2011 a huge earthquake and tsunami devastated the coastal areas of north-eastern Japan. The disaster killed nearly 20 000 people and caused economic damage worth 19 to 25 trillion yen (as estimated by the World Bank). The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (installed with six reactors with a combined output capacity of 4 696MW), operated by Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) and which is located in a Pacific Coast area 230 kilometres north of Tokyo, was struck by the earthquake and tsunami. The power plant’s three reactors that were in operation at the time lost all their…
The South African National Energy Development Institute (SANEDI) and EThekwini Municipality recently hosted a workshop to discuss potential energy “cogeneration” in KwaZulu-Natal. Cogeneration, which is the combined generation of electricity and heat, has significant potential in industrial cities such as Durban, where heat is often required for manufacturing process. The National Department of Energy has indicated its intention to issue a request for proposals for the acquisition of up to 800MW from cogeneration. The workshop was intended to prepare businesses and the government for this new renewable energy opportunity. “The programme was within the framework of the co-operation between the…
The Energy Minister of Namibia, Isak Katali, has called for greater deployment of solar to provide power in off-grid locations. Katali was speaking at the inauguration of a 26kW demonstration project built by French concentrator PV firm specialist, Soitec, near the Namibian capital, Windhoek. With solar irradiance of 3 000kW per square metre every year, Namibia had ample resources to electrify areas not connected to the national grid. “It is clear through projects such as this that plenty of opportunities exist for small-scale renewable energy projects. Independent power producers in solar, wind and biomass are thus strongly encouraged to invest…
More than $48 trillion will be needed to meet the world’s growing energy demand over the period to 2035. This was announced on 3 June by the International Energy Agency (IEA). Today’s annual investment in energy supply of $1,6 trillion needs to rise steadily over the coming decades towards $2 trillion. Annual spending on energy-efficiency, measured against a 2012 baseline, needs to rise from $130 billion today to more than $550 billion by 2035. IEA executive director, Maria van der Hoeven, said the reliability and sustainability of our future energy system depends on investment, but this won’t materialise unless there…
The Austrian-funded project, SOLTRAIN, recently presented its interim results. This project, which has set out to expedite the switch from a fossil fuel-based energy supply to an energy supply system based on solar energy, is carried out in co-operation with six partners in South Africa, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia and Zimbabwe. Up until now 13 “Train the Trainer” courses for professionals with a total of 624 participants were carried out in the partner countries. Besides the “Train the Trainer” courses, 41 dissemination courses with a total of 925 participants were also organised by the project partners. In addition, 11 workshops for…
The UK’s energy and climate secretary of state, Ed Davey, says that finance for carbon capture and storage (CCS) may help to seal a European Union (EU) climate-protection deal by October. “There has to be an EU-wide solution to supporting new CCS in Poland or anywhere else as part of a package to tackle coal. So if a country wants to go down this route, they would need financial support from the EU, but that would make sense because we are trying to promote new technologies,” said Davey. Energy security has been pushed to the top of the EU’s political…
Sasol recently announced that it has concluded a farm-out to Eni SpA (Eni), an Italian multinational oil and gas company, for the exploration right permit 236 (ER236) in South Africa. This permit, which was granted by the Petroleum Agency of South Africa, grants the right to explore for hydrocarbons along South Africa’s East Coast in the Durban and Zululand basins offshore of the KwaZulu-Natal province. Sasol will transfer a 40% interest in ER236 and operatorship to Eni. Sasol will retain a majority 60% interest. The agreement, which is subject to government approval, signals greater cooperation between Sasol and Eni in…
The Cape Metro has requested an electricity rate tariff hike above the National Energy Regulator’s (Nersa’s) guidelines in order to compensate for decreased sales as high-end domestic customers switch to renewable energy. At a public hearing held by Nersa about municipal applications for electricity tariff increases, the city council applied for an increase of 7,63%, while Nersa’s guideline is 7,39%. “While commercial sales are increasing, there is a significant decline in sales to high-end domestic customers,” said Leslie Recontre, Cape Town director of electrical services, before adding that this suggested increase was suggested to compensate for the installation of solar…
Last year, Kenya introduced a 16% VAT on solar products, but in June the Kenyan government announced that this tax will be dismissed. Solar companies in the African country have welcomed this move. Working with the World Bank-backed initiative Lighting Africa and the Kenya Renewable Energy Association, UK-based charity SolarAid has been lobbying the government to drop the tax, claiming that it hampers international efforts to eradicate the kerosene lamps from Africa by 2020.SolarAid said it was able to instantly drop prices for its products by 16% in response to the move.Linda Wamune, operations director at SunnyMoney, the subsidiary of…
Now let’s get on with it. President Zuma’s call for a radical transformation in the energy sector in his state of the nation address hit at the core of SA’s energy catastrophe. Without energy the National Development Plan (NDP) and all plans for growth are dead in the water along with prospects for jobs. South Africa has an immediate and future energy crisis. We need a radical policy to secure affordable and reliable energy to solve the short-term emergency and the long-term supply to power essential GDP growth. The good news is that this radical policy already exists embodied within…
The South African Cleantech Innovation Programme for SMEs was officially launched in Pretoria today. First implemented in South Africa in 2011, the Global Cleantech Innovation Programme (GCIP) now has ongoing activities in Armenia, India, Malaysia, Pakistan, Turkey and South Africa, with projects already under development in a further 20 countries. The launch marks the opening of the call for applications for the Cleantech Competition and Accelerator Programme in South Africa under the GEF-UNIDO Global Cleantech Innovation Programme (GCIP) for SMEs, jointly implemented with the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA). The Cleantech Open, the biggest cleantech accelerator in the United States of…
BASF’s concrete hardener, Master X-Seed® 120, was recognised at the Ulmer BetonTage 2014 Trade Fair in Germany for its innovation in the concrete technology category. “It is a great honour, as this award demonstrates that we have developed an innovative product enabling new business opportunities to our customers,” says Herwig Heegewaldt, who is responsible for BASF’s concrete additive business in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The innovation prize is awarded annually by FBF Betondienst, host of the Ulmer BetonTage, and the BFT International Betonwerk + Fertigteil-Technik professional journal. Assessment criteria include the level of innovation and the originality of the nominees,…
ENSafrica Environmental Department This article is intended as part of a series, the first of which was entitled “The Evolution of South African Environmental Law”. The thrust of the first article is that the practice of environmental law has developed, particularly in recent years, to take a more central role in commercial decisions and as a component of broader commercial legal practice. This article and an intended third in the series consider the scope of environmental legal practice in modern South Africa. IntroductionThe professional life of the environmental lawyer is eclectic and the legal skill is often applied in a…
Joining Cycology and the Green Building Council of South Africa is Royal HaskoningDHV, an international consultant company, in a campaign to create awareness of green mobility alternatives with a focus on electric bicycle commuting and the development of cycling routes throughout Sandton. The campaign includes a series of experiential electric bicycle tours through the Sandton city-scape as part of the decongest sandton campaign [www.decongests.org.za]. The journey is geared at connecting the public, places and passions, to inspire and inform on the latest developments in Green Building & Mobility.On 17 June Royal HaskoningDHV will extend this experience to its employee sat…
Opinion editorial by Arthur Chien, VP of Talesun Energy South Africa’s energy intensive industries should look towards some of its fellow BRIC nations, including countries such as Brazil, China and India, as examples of leaders in decentralised renewable energy solutions such as solar photovoltaic energy. In doing so, they will not only be able to decrease crippling electricity costs and assist in easing the pressure which the country’s energy supply is currently under, but also benefit the South African economy in becoming fit enough to be at a level playing field especially with Brazil, China and India. South Africa's energy…
Based on 18 years’ experience in research and development, the OPS range of Fully Sealed Deep Cycle Rechargeable AGM+GEL VRLA Solar Batteries is specifically aimed at Solar / Wind power storage applications. They are also ideal for UPS systems, DC backup systems, wheelchairs, electric vehicles, boats, marine and navigational aids in a standby application. These OPS batteries harness state-of-the-art gel technologies together with deep cycle technologies, and special components in the lead alloy, as well as additional Gelled Thixotropic electrolyte, extending the cycle service life by reducing plate corrosion and reducing cell failure caused by dry out. The batteries have…
Construction work on Durban’s Western Aqueduct bulk water pipeline worth more than R700 million will be in progress by 2015. To date, 7,5KM of the 55KM second phase has been completed and the entire project is well on track for its expected completion in 2017. “Four contracts along the full length of the pipeline have been awarded and work on each is well underway,” said Neil Macleod, head of eThekwini Water and Sanitation (EWS). Two additional contracts – one for the Wyebank reservoir and another for a spur pipeline going from the main pipeline to Mount Moriah and Tshelimnyama –…
Veolia Water Technologies South Africa, part of Veolia, the global leader in optimized resource management, has been awarded its third major project at Retail Brands Interafrica’s (RBI) Wadeville factory, near Johannesburg, to bring overall treated throughput at the site’s South Plant to 120 m3 per hour. Originally designed and built by Veolia in 2006 to provide process and manufacturing water for the bottling of Pepsi, the plant underwent its first major upgrade in 2010 to increase the hourly throughput of 60 m3 by 50% – enough to cater for the company’s new Ceres Fruit Juice production plant. The latest upgrade,…
Over 2.5 billion people – roughly 36 per cent of the world’s population – still lack what many of us take for granted: access to adequate sanitation. 2.2 million deaths per year are caused by sanitation related illness and diseases, with a high percentage being children under the age of 5. Having that in mind, Dunster House Ltd, a leading manufacturer of timber garden buildings in the UK, has designed new sanitation solutions for humanitarian aid and international development. The company has recently got involved in a charity project in cooperation with Oxfam (an international humanitarian organization, dedicated to the…
Liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Europe isn't a get-rich-quick scenario for the impatient investor: It's a long, strategic play for the sophisticated investor who can handle no small amount of politics and geopolitics along the way. When it comes to Europe, Russia's strategy to divide and conquer has worked so far, but Gazprom is a fragile giant that will eventually feel the pressure of LNG. Robert Bensh is an LNG and energy security expert who has over 13 years of experience with leading oil and gas companies in Ukraine. He has been involved in various roles in finance, capital markets,…
Ford Motor Company is furthering its commitment to aggressively step up water conservation programmes at its global facilities and among the company's suppliers, according to its 15th annual Sustainability Report. Leaders at Ford believe it is a basic human right to have clean, affordable drinking water and access to sanitation, and last year Ford reduced per vehicle water use by 30 percent globally from a 2009 baseline, reaching its goal two years ahead of schedule. Plans are under way to further cut water use by another 2 percent this year and to set new long-term goals. "As Ford continues with…
Many people, even fanatical advocates of solar power, are unaware quite how close we are to reaching a critical milestone in the industry. Within a fairly short space of time, solar generated electricity will be fully cost competitive with coal-powered electricity -- at least if the governments of the world's two largest energy consuming nations have their way. Both the U.S. and China have a stated goal of reducing the cost of solar generated electricity to that level, and quickly. How they are going about it says a lot about how each economic system works. In the U.S., despite the…
The ripple effects of the North American energy boom from major importer to soon-to-be exporter are being felt across the Middle East, Russia and China – and, to some extent, in Southern Africa. This trend will result in new sources of supply, increase competition, reshape the global geopolitical landscape and create greater interdependencies among nations, according to the Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (DTTL) 2014 Oil and Gas Reality Check report. The report focuses on expansion and contraction on a number of fronts: the waxing and waning of dominance among suppliers; the progression into globalisation from regionalisation in energy markets; the…
Key findings on Africa presented at the International Food and Agribusiness Management Association (IFAMA) and Corporate Council on Africa Agribusiness and Food World Forum in South Africa June 17-19 Today, DuPont and the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) jointly announced key Africa-related findings from the 2014 Global Food Security Index (GFSI) at the International Food and Agribusiness Management Association (IFAMA) and Corporate Council on Africa Agribusiness and Food World Forum in Cape Town, South Africa. This year, the Index demonstrated that every region improved from the prior year, but the most progress was seen among Sub-Saharan Africa countries, driven primarily by…
The SolarWorld Sun-TV Station project, a legacy of South Africa’s 2010 Soccer World Cup celebrated the opening of the World Cup Brazil with a community event at Gansbaai on Friday, 13th June, 2014 for local youth to watch one of the opening soccer matches. The solar powered television station was developed by SolarWorld for rural and urban areas. It was installed in more than 35 rural communities across Southern Africa in 2010 and has sustained itself under maintenance by SolarWorld Africa over the last four years. ” Says Gregor Küpper, Managing Director of SolarWorld Africa: “We developed the Sun-TV system…
This year, the World Economic Forum named the water crisis as the third most worrisome risk facing the planet. Changing climate conditions have caused unexpected droughts that ravage local economies, and send shock waves through larger regions. Examples abound. In 2010, Russia suffered through its worst drought in 50 years, with rainfall as low as 10 percent of the long-term average. As a result, the price of wheat skyrocketed both locally and internationally. In 2011, the Department of Agriculture declared that all 254 counties in Texas were natural disaster zones as a result of prolonged drought. In California, Gov. Jerry…
Along with 3 billion other viewers around the world, I plan to tune in for the month-long World Cup to see whether the 22-year old Neymar can withstand the colossal pressure that has been put upon his shoulders to deliver a win for team Brazil. Every time I turn on my television set, I’m using World Cup-related energy. And that’s just the start. Flying in teams, trainers, equipment, World Cup personnel and the estimated 500,000-plus fans will use enormous volumes of jet fuel. Add to that powering the stadiums on game days, moving millions of spectators around host-country Brazil, and…
Ayanda Nakedi is the General Manager of Renewable Energy at Eskom. She has a mammoth task of overseeing the development of Eskom’s renewable programmes including the Sere wind farm and a solar plant in the Northern Cape. Nakedi is an instrumental part of realising the power utility’s goal of diversifying its energy mix. She was recently awarded the 2013 ‘Boss of the Year’ award, which sets out to reward people who are getting leadership right in the workplace. While this award doesn’t take bottom-line business achievements into consideration, it does focus on selecting and awarding individuals who inspire and develop…
As wind energy is celebrated all over the world on Global Wind Day (15 June), South Africa can take stock of its impressive wind energy development programme – and proudly highlight the significant benefits its wind farms will bring to neighbouring communities: more than ZAR 5 billion in monetary terms. Collectively, wind farms presently built or in the pipeline will invest over ZAR 5 billion of their revenue into socio-economic and enterprise development over the next 20 years. Shareholding of between 5% and 40% in the project companies is allocated to local residents on top of that. This substantial investment…
Midvaal Water Company in Stilfontein supplies potable water in bulk to an area of some 900km2 in the North West Province. When specialised joint sealing was required at one of the company’s filter units, Sika’s Sikadur-Combiflex SG system tested the best. The filter unit consists of pre-cast concrete slabs that form a suspended floor to carry filter sand media. Filtered water passes through nozzles in the concrete slabs to a holding sump from which it is pumped into a chemical treatment facility prior to being distributed to the surrounding areas. The project objective was to prevent the sand from passing…
Written by Andrew Gilder (Senior Associate) and Busani Dhladhla (Associate), Environmental department at ENSafrica In 1989 the eminent South African jurist (the late) Prof. Dennis Cowen expressed the view that, by the end of the 1980s, South African environmental law was “a subject struggling to be born”. Nearly a quarter of century later South African environmental law is thriving as a “subject” in a manner that Prof. Cowen is unlikely ever to have anticipated. In addition, the business of environmental law has, in recent years, witnessed a rapid evolution. This article considers the reasons for and implications of this change…
The regular occurrence of power outages which have been on-going since 2008, and the more recent load shedding that took place in early March, coupled with the increasing electricity price hikes, are making renewable energy sources, such as photovoltaic (PV) electricity generation, an increasingly attractive energy source for business owners. This is according to Arthur Chien, VP of Talesun Energy, a leading supplier of solar energy, who says that when making the decision to move away from traditional fossil fuels and towards solar energy as an electricity generation source, businesses need to educate themselves about solar energy suppliers and the…
Biomass cogeneration projects in Kenya continue to create far-reaching positive impacts in the country, thanks to substantial investment from Cummins - a global leader in the manufacture, sales and servicing of diesel engines and related technology. There has been an increase in the demand for electricity in recent years, however, capacity typically falls short of this need. Cummins Cogeneration Kenya managing director Yash Krishna notes that there are multiple solutions for this problem, including cogeneration, a field of expertise where Cummins has placed a substantial amount of attention. Krishna explains: “Over the next three years, Cummins Cogeneration Kenya (CK) plans…
Abengoa (MCE: ABG.B/P SM /NASDAQ: ABGB), the international company that applies innovative technology solutions for sustainability in the energy and environment sectors, has been chosen by the Moroccan National Electricity and Drinking Water Office (ONEE) to construct a new desalination plant in Agadir, Morocco. The project will draw on Abengoa’s technological capabilities, based on a desalination method using a water ultrafiltration pre-treatment that will optimize the advanced reverse osmosis process. It will be Morocco’s largest capacity desalination plant. Abengoa will be responsible for the design, technology and construction of the plant, as well as its subsequent maintenance and operation for…
Port Elizabeth - General Motors South Africa (GMSA) rolled out colourful new waste separation igloos at the Struandale plant this week in celebration of World Environment Day which is commemorated worldwide on 5 June. Having made significant progress in reducing waste in the manufacturing process, the company rolled out waste disposal igloos where employees can dispose of their domestic waste like glass, plastic, paper and metal, before reaching their work stations. Not only will they be reducing the load on their domestic bins, but they will make a significant contribution to the environment. According Angus Clark, GMSA head of plant…
Requirements to conform with rigorous environmental standards has resulted in firms enforcing comprehensive environmental management services (EMS).This pressure has arisen from increasingly stringent legislation, economic policies, customer pressure and growing public concern about the environment, along with the potential cost savings as a result of effective environmental management. To this end, leading engineering consulting firm, GIBB boasts a dedicated environmental auditing unit to oversee ISO Environmental Management Systems, Environmental Compliance Auditing and Environmental Due Diligence Auditing. GIBB Technical Executive, Mervin Olivier, said GIBB conducts most of its Environmental Management System audits to ISO 14001: 2004 requirements. “This service is aimed…
Every day in South Africa unsung heroes and their teams daily plan, engineering and designing energy efficient methods to reduce and save energy and ensure the lights stay on! Their responsible efforts are at the cutting edge of keeping South Africa competitive and sustainable! On the 12th and 13th of November 2014 the Southern African Association for Energy Efficiency (SAEE) will host the 9th SAEE Convention (SAEEC) at Emperors Palace in Gauteng, bringing business, government and industry stakeholders in the region together to celebrate and learn from these heroes in South Africa. With a national scope for end-users and energy…
Most companies install power management solutions based on UPS (uninterruptible power supply) technology to ensure they can function at full capacity irrespective of the power supply. UPS systems rely on batteries to control the supply of power to electronic equipment, preventing power disruptions and damage to sensitive electronic components. “Obtaining the optimal return on your power management investment is all the more important in an era of diminishing budgets,” says Neill Schreiber, Sales and Marketing Manager at Master Power Technologies. “Business can’t afford to reply on utility power and must therefore ensure that its power management solutions deliver the best…
A 2 000 ℓ static hydraulic oil tank containing 34 percent water contamination has been purified to zero percent contamination within three days through the revolutionary Vacuum Dehydrator designed and manufactured by wear control specialist Filter Focus. Due to a cooler system failure in early 2014, severe water contamination was experienced on an oil tank located at the Pietermaritzburg branch of Hulamin - a leading manufacturer of high quality rolled and extruded aluminium products for the local and international market. Engen FluidLink is the appointed onsite lubrication management provider at the Hulamin Pietermaritzburg facility, and site manager Gustav Groenewald reveals…
A 2 000 ℓ static hydraulic oil tank containing 34 percent water contamination has been purified to zero percent contamination within three days through the revolutionary Vacuum Dehydrator designed and manufactured by wear control specialist Filter Focus. Due to a cooler system failure in early 2014, severe water contamination was experienced on an oil tank located at the Pietermaritzburg branch of Hulamin - a leading manufacturer of high quality rolled and extruded aluminium products for the local and international market. Engen FluidLink is the appointed onsite lubrication management provider at the Hulamin Pietermaritzburg facility, and site manager Gustav Groenewald reveals…
Requirements to conform with rigorous environmental standards has resulted in firms enforcing comprehensive environmental management services (EMS). This pressure has arisen from increasingly stringent legislation, economic policies, customer pressure and growing public concern about the environment, along with the potential cost savings as a result of effective environmental management. To this end, leading engineering consulting firm, GIBB boasts a dedicated environmental auditing unit to oversee ISO Environmental Management Systems, Environmental Compliance Auditing and Environmental Due Diligence Auditing. GIBB Technical Executive, Mervin Olivier, said GIBB conducts most of its Environmental Management System audits to ISO 14001: 2004 requirements. “This service is…
Green building is underpinned by the seriousness of the state of the planet and the need to provide healthy, comfortable work environments for people. Buildings are long term investments and are around for many years thus it makes sense to make them efficient and happy place to inhabit, says Brian Wilkinson CEO, Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA). “Every individual green building is complex and unique with many different opportunities and challenges that are explored by developers and owners along with their professional teams. Each one is essentially a response to the site, context, brief and budget, with the…
In today’s economic climate where time is money and resources are limited, no company wants to spend time on unnecessary activities that has zero effect on the bottom line. One such activity is blogging. Tor Valenza, aka Solar Fred, a solar marketing and communications consultant, writes that very few companies truly embraces blogging, probably because it is often perceived as a waste of time and resources, unless supported by objective statistics indicating otherwise. HubSpot, a content marketing platform, has conducted research amongst its clients to determine the value of blogging. Although the Hubspot surveys weren’t focused specifically on solar companies,…
With a new $230 Million Work Program, the GEF Concludes its 4-year, $3.7 Billion Investment cycle to protect the Global Environment Washington DC / Cancun, Mexico, May 28, 2014 – Countries participating in the 46th Council of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) in Cancun launched the new GEF2020 strategy and approved a $230 million work program that together with previous investments during 2010 -2014 will total $3.7 billion directed towards the protection of the global environment. These and other decisions taken by the Council provide the foundation for the next four years of actions (GEF-6) by the GEF and its…
In its recent report the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) revealed that South Africa is responsible for the majority of African's carbon emissions as a result of its coal-intensive energy production, and that the average temperatures across South Africa will increase by 2ºC along the coast and 6ºC inland by the end of the century if no action is taken to combat this. The report notes however, that South Africa has the infrastructure and expertise available to “climate proof” itself in order to lower its carbon emissions. According to Arthur Chien, Vice President of Talesun Energy, the on-going and…
Volkswagen Group South Africa's Paint Shop has introduced a ground breaking vehicle painting project which has become a benchmark in the entire Volkswagen Group production network. The project, which converts the painting technique to 100% electrostatic (called the Bell Bell process), has resulted in massive reduction in hazardous waste and led to a dramatic improvement in painting efficiency levels. "There are two different application processes - one for uni-base colours (for example red, white and black) and a second for metallic colours (for example silver or shadow blue)," explained Nico Serfontein, Head of Paint Shop at the Volkswagen Manufacturing plant…
The upgrade and extension of the Wemmershoek plant is the second Nereda® technology to be implemented in South Africa. Located in the breathtaking Stellenbosch district, the project value is R65 million, with completion scheduled in the third quarter of 2014.Nereda® has opened a whole new way of thinking about wastewater treatment. A natural process, Nereda® has biological purification capabilities. It uses granular biomass, with a granule settling speed 10 times faster than that of conventional flocks. Due to the extremely short settling time, it is possible to operate Nereda® in a way that eliminates the need for big clarifier tanks.…
The United Kingdom, Italy and France will face a severe energy crisis within the next five years, according to a report released by the Global Sustainability Institute at the Anglia Ruskin University. Researchers said the UK has just 5,2 years of oil, 4,5 years of coal and three years of gas left. On the other hand, the fossil fuels in France will be depleted within the next year, while Italy’s gas and coal reserves will be empty within a year. It will run out of oil after a year. As a result, these countries will be entirely dependent on global…
A new R1,5-billion solar power plant near Kimberley will contribute immensely to the country’s rising energy demands, according to the Department of Science and Technology. Droogfontein Solar Power, one of the first solar facilities arising from government's Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP), has been built on a 100 hectares site on which there will be more than 165 000 solar (PV) panels in operation. The project will supply the Eskom 132kV gridline and generate 85,458 MWh per year, supplying enough clean, renewable electrical energy to meet the annual energy needs of more than 19,000 average South African…
An agreement has been signed to undertake a 1 000MW gas-to-power project in Western Ghana by General Electric (GE), Endeavor Energy and Finagestion. It will combine the importation of liquefied natural gas (LNG), a dedicated floating storage and re-gasification unit (FRSU) to receive, store and re-gas, while associated infrastructure will transport natural gas on-shore to GE turbines to generate power. The Ghana 1000 Project consortium is a purely private sector, independent power producer (IPP) initiative with zero direct financial contribution from the government of Ghana. The government’s role has been to create an enabling environment and regulatory framework to allow…
JSE-listed construction materials company, The Dawn Group, is the first company in South Africa to procure power from a private provider of solar energy. It has signed a 20-year power supply agreement with Avelar Energy South Africa, part of the Renova Group. South African legislation does not yet allow private users to procure power from anyone other than Eskom or a local municipality, without regulatory approval. However, in this case the 166kWp solar PV plant has been built at Dawn’s headquarters in Germiston for self-consumption. None of the electricity produced and consumed by Dawn will reach the national grid, so…
South Africa’s energy regulator may tell Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd. that it can charge power consumers more than planned. The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) allowed the state-run utility to increase its tariffs by an average of 8% annually for the five years to 2018. That may be increased further starting on 1 April 2015, should it find that Eskom’s actual costs in the three years through March 2013 exceeded projections. Nersa will announce its decision at the end of May. Price increases of more than 8% are “eventually for certain, otherwise there will eventually be a load-shedding…
South Africa needs to encourage investment in oil and gas exploration or it would not derive any benefit from the resource, according to Standard Bank oil and gas expert Simon Ashby-Rudd. South Africa has shale gas potential in the Karoo, and oil and gas potential in deep water off the coast. If these were economically viable, they could be used for internal power generation, which is currently constrained, replacing imported fuel, which would support the balance of payments. The country has yet to prove shale gas reserves, though the estimate is 40-trillion cubic feet, and no clear plan on how…
Eskom has its eyes on ensuring sub-Saharan Africa is connected to a power grid. “We hope to have an integrated southern electrical grid running by 2020, to 260-million people in the region,” Eskom group transmission executive, Mongezi Ntsokolo, told delegates at the African Utility Week in Cape Town. “No country or area should be without power because of local energy shortages.” He said countries in the southern power pool were building high-voltage transmission links, which would ensure electricity was transferred quickly and effectively. To date, Eskom had erected seven of the planned 46 turbines at its wind farm in the…
South Africa’s largest business lobby group, Business Unity South Africa (Busa), says it will help the incoming administration implement the National Development Plan (NDP) to rid the country of unemployment, poverty and inequality, provided policy certainty was ensured. The NDP sets ambitious targets of growing the economy and reducing unemployment from 25,2% to 6% by 2030. Busa’s acting chief executive officer (CEO), Cas Coovadia, said that business needed to identify “concrete” programmes within the NDP that it could start implementing. But it wanted to influence policy “at a strategic level” and to talk frankly with the government about the “hard…
Europe’s largest solar company increases cell production capacity by 700 MW. March, 2014 – SolarWorld AG will take over cell and module production from Bosch Solar Energy in the Thuringian town of Arnstadt, Germany. As a result, SolarWorld will increase its production capacity to over one gigawatt throughout the entire value chain. This will make the company the largest manufacturer of solar power technology outside of Asia. Dr.-Ing. E.h. Frank Asbeck, the CEO of SolarWorld AG, says, “SolarWorld offers a counterpoint to solar manufacturing in China. We rely on highly automated production processes so that we can minimize failure rates…
With a billion solar wafers produced in Germany, the solar technology company SolarWorld AG looks back on a long history in the industry. The billionth wafer recently rolled off the SolarWorld line at the Freiberg site acquired in 2001 from Bayer. Further processed into solar cells, these silicon discs correspond to the performance of four nuclear power plants and cover an area of 3,700 soccer fields. The quantity of wafers now produced every day by SolarWorld is equivalent to the annual electricity requirement of 1,600 people. “The record of one billion wafers is a milestone and underscores the performance of…
Local manufacturer of PUMA sports and lifestyle clothing leads the manufacturing industry by means of technology and innovation In a bid to explore sustainability as a strategic stance for innovation, Impahla Clothing, manufacturers of PUMA sports and lifestyle clothing, installed a SolarWorld embedded generation power system in 2011. Says Gregor Küpper, Managing Director of SolarWorld Africa: “Impala Clothing’s factory in Maitland is the first photovoltaic power plant operating among PUMA’s suppliers worldwide.” The solar installation generates approximately 48MWh per annum and includes 131 solar panels installed on the rooftop of the plant in Cape Town. It is designed to feed…