South African wind farm to have one of world’s lowest carbon footprints

The Loeriesfontein Wind Farm, which falls under the department of Energy’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP), is said to have one of the world’s lowest carbon footprints for any wind farm foundation.

This is according to research scientist and head of Murray & Roberts’ Concrete Centre for Excellence, Cyril Attwell, who said that the wind farm’s foundations have been developed with an 89% replacement of cement.

ESI-Africa, 10 November 2015

IEA recognises renewable technology as the way forward

In a recently released publication, the World Energy Outlook (WEO-2015), produced by the International Energy Agency (IEA), renewable technology contributed almost 50% of the world’s new power generation capacity in 2014 and has positioned itself as the second-largest source of electricity, after coal.

ESI-Africa, 11 November 2015

South African technologies emerging in response to local energy challenges

As South Africa continues to battle electricity shortages, the threat of load shedding and imposed load curtailment on large industrial users, the country’s research and development fraternity is increasingly making the case for the development of home-grown mitigation and energy efficiency solutions, it emerged at an afternoon session of the tenth Southern African Energy Efficiency Conference, on Wednesday.

“Local innovation can help with our energy issues - we don’t necessarily have to go outside the country to find solutions,” session chairperson and Technology Innovation Agency national project manager Gershwin Mckuur remarked.

Engineering News, 11 November 2015

Updated electricity plan must adapt to reality

The government is updating its Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity, and a report is expected soon. This will inform plans and budgets for bulk electricity supply for the next 25 years. Sound judgment and acumen are required, as poor decisions could prove very costly.

The new IRP will update plans produced in 2010 and 2013 that differed widely in forecasting future capacity requirements. The 2010 IRP suggested SA would need to double existing generating capacity to 89 GW by 2030. The 2013 IRP adjusted required capacity in 2030 to 81 GW, while the New Power Plan produced in 2013 for the National Planning Commission suggests needed capacity will be just 61 GW.

Business Day, 12 November 2015

Ill wind blows for oil companies

The only survivor in today’s Dow Jones Industrial Average from the index of 1896 is General Electric. One of the three additional survivors from 1924, alongside DuPont and AT&T, is Standard Oil of California, now known as Chevron.

Yet the long-established oil and gas companies now face what are arguably the most serious threats in their lifetime. They are under attack on two fronts: from renewable sources, principally wind, solar and biofuels, which are backed by governments in all the world’s leading economies, and from smaller, nimbler companies that have found new ways to extract oil and gas from previously unyielding shale rocks.

Business Day, 12 November 2015

Oil & Gas: IDZ to become independent public entity

An application is set to be submitted to the Western Cape Cabinet at the end of this year, to transform the Saldanha Bay Industrial Development Zone (SBIDZ) into an independent public entity. The SBIDZ has designed a port that provides players in the oil and gas industry with a customs-controlled and duty-free area.

Once the application has been submitted, Economic Opportunities MEC Alan Winde, who is driving the application process, said last week: “We will then go ahead with the legislation to formally set up Saldanha Bay IDZ as a state-owned enterprise.”

ESI-Africa, 12 November 2015

Eskom’s move to claw back ZAR22.8 billion could result in 16.6% 2016 tariff rise

State-owned electricity utility Eskom reported on Thursday that it had submitted a ZAR22.8 billion regulatory clearing account (RCA) application to the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) for the first financial year, or 2013/14, of the third multiyear price determination (MYPD3) control period, which runs from 1 April 2013 to 31 March 2018.

Nersa’s Charles Hlebela confirmed receipt of the application, which the regulator had calculated could, should it be approved, result in a tariff increase of 16.61% from 1 April 2016, inclusive of the 8% already sanctioned for the year.

Engineering News, 12 November 2015