Technical and scientific consulting services organisation Sci-Ba has experienced an increase in demand from mines and industries to advise them on sustainability and green technologies, as well as how these will impact on processing and standards, says Sci-Ba cofounder and director Chazanne Long.
Much of the consulting work is a technical challenge to ensure that new technologies are developed and conform with existing standards and regulations. This includes examining entire industrial processes – for example, characterising concrete additives and fillers such as fly ash and the inclusion of waste rock or overburden as aggregates in construction materials. It also includes assessing the behaviour of these products, as well as how they will impact on the standard processes in the civil engineering industry, she explains.
Long, a geologist, tells Engineering News the company fulfils a key role in helping mining and industrial clients to assess and adopt new technologies to meet the demands of their clients, in line with legislation such as the National Environmental Management Act and, particularly, the Waste Management Act, which was amended in 2014.
“There is a growing trend of reducing, reusing, recycling and, particularly, the potential of upcycling to divert materials from landfills. This improves the sustainability of materials used in industry and creates a more cyclical economy, with a focus on health and safety of companies, clients, users and citizens beyond the life cycle of the project, infrastructure or product.
“These trends are particularly important in developing economies and demand for Sci-Ba’s consulting services is increasing in Africa,” she adds.
Similarly, Sci-Ba is seeing continuing demand for advice on water and environmental technologies in and beyond South Africa, with Africa generally considered a water-scarce area. The demand for water resources is set to grow across the continent because of climate change, population growth and industrialisation.Water Technologies
“We provide advice almost daily on water technologies, well-point and borehole installations and sampling for water quality. This includes technical information such as . . . purification technologies and the suitability and sustainability of surface- and groundwater resources.”
The company also provides services for government departments and parastatal organisations, although industry and the public sector in Africa are the dominant client base, she adds.
“It is more demanding to get into the government sectors and, while we want to grow our services to governments, we mainly serve as a subcontractor specialist to larger companies working on government tenders. We expect to see the strongest growth in services to companies that are working on public-sector projects and we aim to expand into the government sector organically,” concludes Long.