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Wind News

Africa’s energy future lies in solar energy, says CEO 

By: Anine Kilian     19th July 2017 The future of Africa’s energy sector must rest in solar power if it is going to overcome the obstacles it currently faces, according to Zimbabwe-based renewable energy company Samansco CEO Nyasha Bamhare. Addressing delegates at the PowerGen Africa conference, which is taking place in Sandton... 

Brown acknowledges cost competitiveness of renewables as she calls for deal that goes ‘beyond price’ 

By: Terence Creamer     18th July 2017 Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown, who in June criticised the high cost of renewable energy, offered a tacit acknowledgement on Tuesday of the growing competitiveness of solar and wind, while calling for a long-term deal with the renewable-energy sector to avoid job losses in the energy... 

Brown acknowledges cost competitiveness of renewables as she calls for deal that goes ‘beyond price’

Temporary mobile transformer helps Loeriesfontein connect to the grid

By: Samantha Herbst     18th July 2017 The Northern Cape-based Loeriesfontein Wind Farm has been making use of a mobile transformer to allow for an early connection to the grid for the commissioning of the turbines – a temporary solution until the wind farm can connect to the Helios substation, which is the permanent grid connection.... 

Temporary mobile transformer helps Loeriesfontein connect to the grid

Opinion: Hybrid energy solutions can boost viability of African mines

     18th July 2017 In this opinion article, juwi Renewable Energies MD Greg Austin reflects on prospects in Africa for bilateral power purchase agreements for both grid-connected and behind-the-meter hybrid energy solutions 

Opinion: Hybrid energy solutions can boost viability of African mines
juwi Renewable Energies MD Greg Austin

Black-led energy investment firm encouraged by moves to restore IPP policy certainty 

By: Terence Creamer     17th July 2017 The head of a black-managed and led JSE-listed energy investment company says he is encouraged by the framework outlined by Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba for re-establishing policy certainty for the electricity sector and for independent power producers (IPPs). IPPs have been left in limbo since... 

Black-led energy investment firm encouraged by moves to restore IPP policy certainty
Hulisani CEO Marubini Raphulu

Energy storage solutions to be leveraged in South Africa

By: Robyn Wilkinson     14th July 2017 The decreasing cost of energy storage solutions presents many opportunities for South Africa to manage the key issue of localised peak load power generation more efficiently, says green energy solutions provider Freedom Won cofounder and director Antony English. 

Energy storage solutions to be leveraged in South Africa
ANTONY ENGLISH AND LIZETTE KRIEL The co-founders of Freedom Won are confident that demand for energy storage will continue to grow in South Africa in the long-term

Event to facilitate meaningful and relevant debate

By: Robyn Wilkinson     14th July 2017 The POWER-GEN & DistribuTECH Africa advisory board has gone to great lengths to ensure that this year’s conference programme is tailored to meaningfully address the issues most relevant to Africa’s power generation sector and supported by a showcase of suppliers who can practically assist in... 

Event to facilitate meaningful  and relevant debate
Photo by Bloomberg
PLOTTING FUTURE PATHS Creative thinking is needed to devise a representative power-generation portfolio that leverages all the options available

Finalisation of ‘lowest cost’ IRP included in growth action plan 

By: Terence Creamer     13th July 2017 The finalisation of the “lowest cost” Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity has been included in a list of energy-related interventions unveiled by Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba as part of ‘Government’s Inclusive Growth Action Plan’ published on Thursday. Likewise, the National Treasury... 

Finalisation of ‘lowest cost’ IRP included in growth action plan

Competition aims to unearth African energy startups

By: Creamer Media Reporter      11th July 2017 A competition aimed at identifying innovative startups in the field of electricity access in Africa has been launched, following an agreement between energy multinational Enel and Swiss-based Seedstars World, which facilitates startup competitions in more that 75 countries. Dubbed the ‘Africa... 

Clean energy’s global investment share grew to record 43% in 2016 

By: Terence Creamer     11th July 2017 The share of clean-energy spending rose to a record 43% of total energy-related investment in 2016, the International Energy Agency’s (IEA’s) yearly World Energy Investment report shows. Global energy investment fell by 12% to $1.7-trillion last year, the second consecutive year of decline.... 

Clean energy’s global investment share grew to record 43% in 2016

Eskom has over recovered R7.6bn in renewables-related costs since 2014 

By: Terence Creamer     7th July 2017 The affordability of South Africa’s growing fleet of renewable energy plants has been questioned on several occasions by Eskom and Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown also weighed in recently, telling Parliamentarians in late June that, while electricity arising from the renewables plants was... 

Eskom has over recovered R7.6bn in renewables-related costs since 2014

‘Significant implications’ for design of African power markets as renewables prices fall

By: Terence Creamer     26th June 2017 Recent renewable energy price reductions, together with sub-Saharan Africa’s (SSA’s) formidable solar and wind resources, have made solar and wind technologies the cheapest sources of power in several countries, which carries significant implications, a newly published academic paper argues, for... 

‘Significant implications’ for design of African power markets as renewables prices fall

Joint venture to boost localisation and skills development

By: Nadine James     23rd June 2017 STEAG EOH Energy Services, a strategic joint venture (JV) – formed in February by JSE-listed technology solutions provider EOH and German energy group STEAG Energy Services – has been actively pursuing opportunities in the local energy market, while identifying areas for localisation and skills... 

Budding local wind technicians graduate on Global Wind Day

By: Kim Cloete     15th June 2017 After seven months of intense training, 18 young South Africans graduated from the internationally recognised Wind Turbine Service Technician programme, in Cape Town, on Thursday, which also happened to be Global Wind Day. Five of the seven months of training were spent at the South African... 

Wind energy continues to grow as installed capacity reaches 500 GW

By: Anine Kilian     15th June 2017 Wind energy has become a major driver for a sustainable energy future and, with over 500 GW of capacity installed worldwide, it is a leading source of new power generation globally. In 2016, $112.5-billion was invested in wind power globally, and the industry now employs 1.2-million people,... 

NPC commissioner calls for energy-planning overhaul 

By: Terence Creamer     14th June 2017 A member of the National Planning Commission (NPC) has pointed to serious shortcomings in South Africa’s current energy planning processes and has called for future plans, including the highly contested Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity, to be compiled by a new independent technical... 

NPC commissioner calls for energy-planning overhaul

Industry trends shift towards efficient, intelligent strategies

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     9th June 2017 The main feature of global demand for energy is a shift to maximising efficiency through delivering energy at the lowest cost per kilowatt per hour, says independent process industry consultant Santosh Gunpath. He tells Engineering News that this was evident from his interactions with industry... 

Industry trends shift towards efficient, intelligent strategies
Photo by Bloomberg
EFFICIENCY PRIORITISED With energy integral to every process, the objective should be to maximise the efficiency of delivering the necessary energy at the lowest cost per kilowatt per hour

US agency awards grant to SA IPP for Free State solar study

By: Mia Breytenbach     2nd June 2017 The US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has awarded a grant to Johannesburg-based independent power developer Pele Green Energy. The grant will fund a feasibility study to assess the viability of a 75 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) power plant, in the Free State. US Consul General of Cape Town... 

US agency awards grant to SA IPP for Free State solar study
Photo by Bloomberg
NECESSARY ANALYSIS The grant funds a feasibility study to assess the viability of a 75 MW solar photovoltaic power plant, in the Free State

$100-million loan for African infrastructure spending

By: Nadine James     26th May 2017 The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) and the Agence Française de Développement (AFD) in March signed a $100-million loan agreement aimed at furthering the DBSA’s infrastructure financing activity across Africa. This flexible credit line will focus on DBSA’s four strategic sectors:... 

Task team deliberating on renewables impasse to report ‘first week in June’

By: Terence Creamer     19th May 2017 A joint departmental task team set up to find solutions to the current impasse holding back the signing of power purchase agreements (PPAs) for 37 renewable-energy projects procured in 2015 will report back in the first week of June, Energy Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi reported on Friday. The task... 

 Task team deliberating on renewables impasse to report ‘first week in June’
Energy Minister Mmamoloko Kubay

Industry leaders warn of loss in investments in renewables sector

By: Johane Turkstra     19th May 2017 Following State-owned power utility Eskom’s decision last year not to sign a number of contracts with independent power producers (IPP) and the delay in doing so since, industry leaders are warning that a loss in investments in the renewables sector could lead to a severe plateau in... 

Industry leaders warn of loss in investments in renewables sector
Photo by Bloomberg
NON-RENEWABLE ENERGY Eskom is responsible for generating about 95% of South Africa’s electricity and the firm mainly relies on coal for its power generation

Millions invested in renewables, research excellence

     19th May 2017 Last month, State-owned power utility Eskom says over an extended period of time, funded research work done by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and Stellenbosch University has ostensibly benefited research in the renewables space. “Eskom’s unique role in driving... 

African countries look to minigrids to light up rural areas

By: Kim Cloete     17th May 2017 African countries are increasingly looking towards minigrids to provide people living in remote areas access to electricity. Government officials from Ghana, Uganda and Nigeria have told delegates at the African Utility Week, in Cape Town, this week, that minigrids are the way to go for many... 

Least-cost electricity transition being played out at CSIR’s Pretoria campus

By: Dylan Slater     12th May 2017 The expansive Pretoria campus of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research is increasingly being taken off-grid with the roll-out of renewable-energy projects as part of its drive to demonstrate the potential of renewable energy to the domestic energy industry.  

Least-cost electricity transition being played out at CSIR’s Pretoria campus

Nersa may probe whether Eskom’s refusal to sign renewables PPAs contravened licence 

By: Terence Creamer     11th May 2017 The electricity subcommittee of the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) will recommend that the Energy Regulator institute a formal investigation into a complaint that Eskom was flouting the conditions of its licence by refusing to conclude power purchase agreements (PPAs) for 37... 

Nersa may probe whether Eskom’s refusal to sign renewables PPAs contravened licence

Internship academy launches young professionals platform

     5th May 2017 In response to the youth unemployment epidemic on the African continent, internship facilitators  Africa Internship Academy (AIA), will be launching its Young Energy and Power Professionals (YEPP) platform at the 2017 African Utility Week, which takes place at the  Cape Town International... 

Internship academy launches young professionals platform
NURTURING POTENTIAL The launch intends to establish a network of graduates attempting to solve Africa’s power and energy issues

Renewable microgrids the future of African power system – research institution

By: Nadine James     5th May 2017 Self-sustaining renewable microgrids could foreseeably drive the development of Africa’s power system, resulting in quick, cost-effective electrification that enhances power security, says South African national research institution, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). CSIR... 

Renewable microgrids the future of African power system – research institution
SUBSISTENCE POWER A power system based on renewable technologies would be vastly different to the current system as an individual wind turbine could be used to generate cheap electricity for a microgrid in a remote village

Gaia lifts FY earnings a share by 205% y/y

By: Anine Kilian     3rd May 2017 Infrastructure investment company Gaia Infrastructure Capital has reported a 205% year-on-year increase in earnings a share to 65.59c for the year ended February 28. The company delivered an enhanced tangible net asset value per share of R10.63 during the period, compared with R9.97 in 2016. 

End to Eskom ‘stalemate’ will unleash wind market in 2017 – GWEC 

By: Terence Creamer     25th April 2017 The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) expects a recovery in the deployment of wind projects in South Africa, following a hiatus in 2016 brought about by Eskom’s refusal to enter into power purchase agreements (PPAs) for renewable-energy projects procured in 2015. In its ‘Global Wind Report:... 

End to Eskom ‘stalemate’ will unleash wind market in 2017 – GWEC

Gigaba slams Eskom’s ‘mistake’ of contradicting government policy on renewables 

By: Terence Creamer     19th April 2017 Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba says Eskom made a “mistake” by raising its corporate difficulties in relation to the signing of power purchase agreements (PPAs) with renewable-energy generators in a way that undermined the policy position of government on both the energy mix and the... 

Gigaba slams Eskom’s ‘mistake’ of contradicting government policy on renewables
Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba

Renewables still largely underexploited in most African countries

By: Dylan Slater     14th April 2017 The biggest challenge faced by the renewable-energy industry is storage, and a lack of wide-spread adoption is impeding renewable-energy sources from realising their full potential in the greater energy mix, according to Eaton Africa operations head Eugèn Ranft.  

Solar body urges Energy Minister to provide revised PPA signing date 

By: Terence Creamer     11th April 2017 The South African Solar Photovoltaic Industry Association (Sapvia) expressed confidence on Tuesday that the latest delay in signing of power purchase agreements (PPAs) for 37 renewable-energy projects procured in 2015 would be “short-term” in nature. However, it urged newly appointed Energy... 

Solar body urges Energy Minister to provide revised PPA signing date

Renewables contracts will not be signed on April 11 

By: Terence Creamer     10th April 2017 The signing of power purchase agreements (PPAs) for the projects procured under the fourth bid window of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) will not take place on April 11 as initially envisaged. The date had been set by former Energy Minister Tina... 

Renewables contracts will not be signed on April 11

Opinion: Renewables IPP programme an example of impeccable governance

     7th April 2017 It is important to regularly pause, reflect and appreciate a job well conceived and well executed. Back in 2010, the South African government took the bold decision to create a legislative and practical environment in which the Department of Energy could procure power generated by private... 

Opinion: Renewables IPP programme an example of impeccable governance
Brenda Martin

Least-cost base case essential starting point for IRP process – Sawea

By: Mia Breytenbach     7th April 2017 The South African Wind Energy Association (Sawea) has rejected the current base case scenario used for the 2016 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) Update for Electricity, calling for the scenario to be remodelled as a “least-cost energy plan” and re-issued for consultation. The public participation... 

Least-cost base case essential starting point for IRP process – Sawea

Construction of Northern Cape wind farm ramping up as first components arrive

By: Dylan Slater     7th April 2017 Construction of the Northern Cape-based Khobab Wind Farm has begun in earnest with the transportation and arrival of various wind turbine components to its construction site in the Hantam municipality, 60 km north of Loeriesfontein, both in the Northern Cape.  

Construction of Northern Cape wind farm  ramping up as first components arrive
MASSIVE UNDERTAKING Transporting the individual wind turbine components for the Khobab Wind Farm is expected to be completed in August, 2017

CSIR’s formal IRP submission deviates dramatically from Base Case 

By: Terence Creamer     5th April 2017 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research’s (CSIR’s) formal input into the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) public consultation process, which ended on March 31, proposes a new-build mix that deviates materially from the IRP Base Case released by the Department of Energy (DoE) in November.... 

CSIR’s formal IRP submission deviates dramatically from Base Case
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