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Renewable Energy News

Energy Minister to unveil SWH framework next month  

By: Christy van der Merwe     8th October 2009 Energy Minister Dipuo Peters would present South Africa’s National Solar Water Heating (SWH) strategic framework to all interested stakeholders on November 5, in Johannesburg. The broad areas of the framework included: a national vision for SWH in South Africa; objectives to be achieved; and... 

Bridging the electricity 
divide in rural areas

2nd October 2009 International computer chip manufacturer Intel Corporation is supporting an initiative to help rural schools without electricity to bridge the digital divide by training thousands of students in Kenya in how to use computers as a learning tool. 

Renewable energy to grow exponentially in South Africa

2nd October 2009 Despite the considerable potential that exists to produce electricity using renewable energy (RE) in Southern Africa, RE projects have been largely limited to off-grid, small-scale applications. However, the renewable energy market in South Africa is expected to grow exponentially in the next few... 

Solutions provider 
introduces 
hydroturbine locally

2nd October 2009 A river power station that uses kinetic river energy to generate fish-friendly electric power has been introduced locally by technology solutions provider OEN Enterprises. 

Local renewable-energy industry must consolidate to advance  

By: Lindsey Berry     2nd October 2009 The local renewable energy sector should work together to promote sustainable energy solutions as an entire concept rather than individual companies exclusively promoting their methods, says energy solutions company The Power Company regional manager Alan Curtis. 

World congress aims to 
encourage sustainability

By: Lindsey Berry     2nd October 2009 The International Solar Energy Society’s (ISES) Solar World Congress to be held at the Sandton Convention Centre, in Johannesburg, in October will focus on encouraging sustainability though renewable energy solutions. 

R100m investment approved for Southern Africa fund

2nd October 2009 The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a R100-million equity investment in the Evolution One Fund, the first Southern Africa-focused private equity fund specialising in the areas of clean-energy and sustainable technologies. 

Local government takes on energy efficiency

2nd October 2009 City governments have a significant role to play in managing energy consumption and green house gas (GHG) emissions, reports local nongovernmental organisation Sustainable Energy Africa (SEA). 

Applications for wind-generated power filtering through

By: Lindsey Berry     2nd October 2009 Since the introduction of the renewable energy feed-in electricity tariff in April, the local power utility has received enquiries relating to connecting 3 000 MW of wind-generated power from the Western Cape and 600 MW from the Eastern Cape to the national power grid, reports the African Wind... 

Biogas recovery project 
to reduce fossil fuels 
dependence

2nd October 2009 Brewing company SABMiller’s Alrode plant has developed a biogas recovery project to reduce dependence on fossil fuels to provide energy for the plant. 

Plans under way to build world’s largest renewable energy transmission line

2nd October 2009 ITC Holdings, which plans to build the world’s largest renewable-energy transmission system in the US, said a national green-energy standard would help pave the way for construction of the $12-billion project. 

Offshore wind could 
provide one-fifth of 
EU electricity

By: Bloomberg     2nd October 2009 Offshore wind may provide as much as 17% of European Union (EU) electricity demand by 2030, surging from almost nothing now as the bloc promotes renewable energy, an industry group said. 

Biogas projects could add 200 MW to SA power mix, developer claims

By: Chanel de Bruyn     2nd October 2009 About 200 MW of electricity could potentially be generated from biogas-from- waste projects around the country, with a number of projects potentially being able to generate up to 10 MW of electricity on site, developer and operator of industrial organic waste-to-energy systems CAE Energy MD Dr... 

How some energy-savvy South Africans have already taken the grid-free leap

By: Christy van der Merwe     2nd October 2009 Despite South Africa’s plentiful supply of solar irradiation, the cheap cost of coal-fired power, compared with relatively expensive renewable-energy technologies, has meant that the up-take of these technologies is slow. To date, there has been little incentive to invest in capital-intensive... 

Roads agency appoints contractor for solar traffic lights

By: Lindsey Berry     2nd October 2009 The Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) has appointed Sunrise Technologies as a contractor to manage the installation of about 400 solar-powered traffic lights in the Johannesburg municipal area.  

French agency makes €120m available for small SA renewable projects 

By: Christy van der Merwe     1st October 2009 French development bank Agence Française de Développement (AFD) on Thursday announced that it would be extending a €120-million (about R1,5-billion) credit facility to commercial banks in South Africa, to be used for small- to medium-sized energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. To... 

Multiutility Inga model questioned and defended

By: Terence Creamer     28th September 2009 A South African electrical engineer has raised serious concerns about the wisdom of pursuing the multibillion-dollar Inga hydroelectricity project in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as a regional endeavour, capitalised solely through equity finance from the five founding shareholder... 

SA postpones renewable 
energy policy review 
deadline to February

By: Chanel de Bruyn     25th September 2009 The Department of Energy has extended the timeframe for completion of a revision of the White Paper on the Renewable Energy Policy of 2003, by a month.

The Renewable Energy Market Transformation Implementation Support Unit (REMT-ISU), which is a joint initiative of the World Bank and the... 

Challenging ventilation shaft at Ingulu hydropower project is complete

By: Leandi Kolver     25th September 2009 Contractor Atlantis Drill has sunk its largest diameter hole through a 23-m pre-sunk concrete collar of 234-m ventilation shaft at the Ingula project near Van Reenen with a Sandvik Reamer, which MD Sarel Smit confesses was not just a milestone, but sometimes did give team some “anxious moments”. 

Biogas projects could add 200 MW to SA power mix – CAE Energy  

By: Chanel de Bruyn     18th September 2009 About 200 MW of electricity could potentially be generated from biogas-from-waste projects around the country, with a number of projects potentially being able to generate up to 10 MW of electricity on site, developer and operator of industrial organic waste to energy systems CAE Energy MD Dr... 

SA urged to look at refuse-derived fuel to improve energy security  

By: Christy van der Merwe     18th September 2009 Of all the domestic and industrial solid waste generated, 70% of it is combustible and contains energy, which is why Taiwan Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) adviser Dr Chih Chao views it as a “misallocated resource” and says that “instead of letting it rot in a landfill, we should... 

IFC to invest $500m a year on renewable projects by 2011

By: Chanel de Bruyn     16th September 2009 The International Finance Corporation (IFC) would increase its lending to the renewable energy sector globally by three times the 2005 to 2007 levels over the next three years, IFC principal investment officer in South Africa Stephan Vermaak said on Wednesday. Speaking at the Cogeneration World... 

New turbine for generation of undersea power – Alstom 

By: Martin Creamer     15th September 2009 New turbines were being developed to generate electrical power from undersea currents, Alstom country president Didier Farez revealed at the Actom launch in Johannesburg on Tuesday. Speaking at the unveiling of the new corporate livery of Actom – formerly Alstom Electrical Industries – Farez... 

Proposed power projects could help SADC meet demand

By: Creamer Media Reporter      14th September 2009 Southern African countries could meet their combined projected energy demand in 2016, if 12 electricity generation and transmission projects presented at a Southern African Development Community Energy Investor Roundtable, in Zambia, in July, came to fruition, New Partnership for Africa’s... 

SADC reaffirms Inga as a regional project, Westcor may be expanded

By: Terence Creamer     11th September 2009 The uncertainty about whether the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) government planned to reverse the Southern African Development Community's (SADC's) mandate over the development of the high-potential Inga hydroelectric projects appears to have been lifted, following the recent Heads of State... 

Belgium company plans R1,2bn Eastern Cape wind farm

By: Esmarie Iannucci     11th September 2009 Belgium’s largest renewable energy producer, Electrawinds Belgium, is planning to build a R1,2-billion wind farm in the Coega Industrial Development Zone (IDZ), in the Eastern Cape. The company is currently finalising a feasibility study for setting up the commercial wind farm, the Coega... 

Work advancing on commercialisation of algal biofuels

By: Leandi Kolver     11th September 2009 The technical maturity and commercial viability of algal biofuels is a much debated topic, with estimates ranging from three years to multiple decades, says US alternative and renewable energy company Diversified Energy president and CEO Phillip Brown. 

Solid growth in solar 
thermal installations

By: Leandi Kolver     11th September 2009 Solar thermal heating, which harnesses the sun’s energy for domestic water heating, space heating, and other industrial processes, expanded by 19 GW of the thermal heating equivalent to reach 147 GW of capacity in 2007. 

SA extends timeframe for renewable energy policy review to February

By: Chanel de Bruyn     10th September 2009 The Department of Energy has extended the timeframe for completion of a revision of the White Paper on the Renewable Energy Policy of 2003, by a month. The Renewable Energy Market Transformation Implementation Support Unit (REMT-ISU), which is a joint initiative of the World Bank and the... 

One of SA’s largest SWH projects rolled out at platinum mine 

By: Christy van der Merwe     9th September 2009 Solar water heater (SWH) products and services provider Solar Heat has rolled out one of South Africa’s largest SWH installations at the change houses at Anglo Platinum’s Brakfontein shaft, which is currently being commissioned. Solar Heat said that the platinum miner’s change houses at the... 

Study into potential wind power problem for SA air traffic radars

By: Keith Campbell     8th September 2009 British high-technology missions systems and information management company BAE Systems Insyte has been invited to, and will, bid for a South African requirement to investigate possible radar interference from wind turbines planned to be established on the country's west coast. "Insyte has... 

Electricity expansion decision needed in the next year – Eskom

By: Chanel de Bruyn     7th September 2009 A decision on a third new coal-fired power station, or a series of smaller power stations, would have to be made within the next year to ensure that water and transmission infrastructure could be built on time, Eskom System Operations and Planning division MD Kannan Lakmeeharan said on Monday.... 

SA wants technology diffusion to developing countries at centre of Copenhagen deal

By: Christy van der Merwe     4th September 2009 Predictable financial flows, technology transfer and capacity building for developing countries are the imperatives sought by South Africa’s Department of Environmental Affairs negotiators, as they prepare for the global climate change negotiations at Copenhagen (the 15th conference of the... 

Biofuels now at a crossroads as 
maize shortfalls are highlighted

By: Leandi Kolver     4th September 2009 Biofuels production today can be more harmful than helpful, says the Worldwatch Institute’s ‘Red, White, and Green: Transforming US Biofuels‘ report co-author Jane Earley.

She explains that concerns about energy security and climate change, as well as a range of US government incentives, fuelled... 

Renewable energy industry players make Refit submissions to Nersa

By: Christy van der Merwe     3rd September 2009 The public hearings for the second phase of the renewable energy feed-in-tariff (Refit) took place at the National Energy Regulator of South Africa's (Nersa's) office in Pretoria on Thursday, with 19 presenters from industry lined up to make presentations to the Nersa panel. Nersa hearings... 

Eskom says solar water heater programme gains traction 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      1st September 2009 State-owned power producer Eskom on Tuesday said that its solar water heating programme was gaining traction. Within a year of its launch, about 1 600 householders have purchased solar water heaters for their homes with over 1 400 having received rebates. 

SA’s renewable energy policy to be reviewed

By: Chanel de Bruyn     1st September 2009 The Renewable Energy Market Transformation Implementation Support Unit (REMT-ISU), which is a joint initiative of the World Bank and the Department of Energy, is looking for consultants in the energy sector to undertake a revision of the White Paper on Renewable Energy Policy of 2003. The unit,... 

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