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Biofuels News

Small-scale biodiesel production more cost effective

By: Zandile Mavuso     20th September 2013 Self-sustainable, small-scale biodiesel production is the most cost-effective way to get into the market, following confirmation by government that its 2013 target of 2% biofuels penetration into the current fuel pool will not be met, says Biodiesel processing and equipment company Bioman Energy. 

Use of sunflower oil as a renewable-energy source researched

By: Zandile Mavuso     20th September 2013 A study on biofuels being undertaken by the Agricultural Research Council (ARC) aims to develop sunflower oil as an alternative fuel source in South Africa. 

Biomass boiler to reduce environmental impact

By: Zandile Mavuso     20th September 2013 To reduce the environmental impact of the printing process, a new biomass boiler will be installed at printing company Paarl Media’s Cape Town plant in December. 

Company contemplates introducing new products

By: Ilan Solomons     20th September 2013 Heating and cooling solutions provider Home Heating manager Cobus Roux tells Engineering News that the company is investigating the possibility of introducing pellet stoves and oil burners to expand customer choice while consolidating its existing range of heating and cooling systems. He explains... 

Biomass crane to be launched in SA

By: Zandile Mavuso     20th September 2013 Overhead lifting equipment and crane repair company Konecranes’ CXT biomass crane is expected to be launched in South Africa in early 2014 to ensure that the company takes advantage of the many new biomass energy plants that will be built in Sout Africa. 

Biomass project moving to bankability stage

By: Zandile Mavuso     20th September 2013 Engineering, management and specialist technical services group Aurecon, whose biomass-to-energy (B2E) project in Nkomazi, Mpumalanga, envisions the production of charcoal briquettes from sugar cane, is structuring propopals for funders to move the project from the feasibility to the bankability... 

NKOMAZI SUGAR CANES Small-scale sugar growers (SSGs) in Mpumalanga typically produce 450 000 t/y of sugar cane, with more than 1 200 SSGs in the Nkomazi district
NKOMAZI SUGAR CANES Small-scale sugar growers (SSGs) in Mpumalanga typically produce 450 000 t/y of sugar cane, with more than 1 200 SSGs in the Nkomazi district

IDC to issue bonds up to R12bn, dangling R2.7bn youth carrot

By: Martin Creamer     9th September 2013 South Africa’s State-owned Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), which plans to issue bonds up to R12-billion in the next 18 months, on Monday announced stepped-up R2.7-billion funding to boost youth entrepreneurship. The State-owned corporation, which disbursed a record R16-billion into the... 

IDC CEO Geoffrey Qhena
Photo by Duane Daws
IDC CEO Geoffrey Qhena

Carbon footprint measurement tool to aid emissions reduction in SA

By: David Oliveira     2nd August 2013 International consulting engineering firm Royal HaskoningDHV has developed a tool that can measure an organisation’s carbon footprint to help reduce its emissions, says Royal HaskoningDHV’s principal engineer Siva Chetty. The tool measures three different scopes of carbon emissions. Scope 1... 

Sasol inaugurates the country’s first gas-fired power plant 

By: Joanne Taylor     26th July 2013 Sasol New Energy inaugurated South Africa’s first gas-engine power plant at its Sasolburg site, in the Free State, earlier this month. 

MEGAPOWERThe Sasol gas-engine power plant has a 140 MW operating capacity, which can power 200 000 households
MEGAPOWERThe Sasol gas-engine power plant has a 140 MW operating capacity, which can power 200 000 households

Food Security Advocate

By: Tracy Hancock     28th June 2013 Carl Moyo, sub-Saharan Africa regional director of DuPont, speaks to Tracy Hancock of Engineering News about his journey from a milking stool, in Zimbabwe, to climbing the corporate ladder in South Africa Being a teacher would have sufficed for science-based products and services company DuPont... 

AFRICA’S SALES REP Carl Moyo; selling the business case for Africa
AFRICA’S SALES REP Carl Moyo; selling the business case for Africa

IDC's green-industries portfolio grows to R10.4bn 

By: Terence Creamer     25th June 2013 The Industrial Development Corporation’s (IDC’s) green industries strategic business unit (SBU), which was established in April 2011, currently has a committed portfolio valued at R10.4-billion, much of which relates to its support for South Africa’s renewable-energy project pipeline. To date,... 

IDC green industries SBU head Rentia van Tonder
Photo by Duane Daws
IDC green industries SBU head Rentia van Tonder

South Africa’s energy-saving initiatives gain momentum 

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th June 2013 While South Africa has made great strides in developing energy efficiency projects to mitigate dwindling electricity reserves, more needs to be done to encourage and support firms to undertake the transition from “business as usual” to becoming energy-conscience businesses. This view emerged... 

South Africa’s energy-saving initiatives gain momentum

Emulsion fuel offers environmental benefits

7th June 2013 Environmental technology company Nano Bubble Technologies’ (NBT’s) emulsion fuels offer the boiler industry environmental and economic benefits. 

Two 3 t steam boilers installed

7th June 2013 Heavy steel engineering company Cyclotherm SA in April installed two 3 t dual-fired steam boilers (Cyclotherm C7000) - which can be fired on gas or light oil - and all ancillary equipment for healthcare company Adcock Ingram’s new high-volume liquid plant in Oliphantsfontein. 

Demand for biomass fired boilers increases 

By: Zandile Mavuso     7th June 2013 As the price of biomass fuels becomes more competitive with traditional fuels, such as coal, oil and gas, the demand for biomass-fired boilers is steadily increasing. Subsequently, this has created a growing need for the manufacturing of boilers for these cleaner and more sustainable fuels,... 

Waste and residual biomass can be converted into energy products

10th May 2013 A biomass-to-energy plant is being built to convert sugarcane waste to ‘green charcoal’, which will provide additional revenue for small-scale farmers in Nkomazi, Mpumalanga, says consulting engineering firm Aurecon project manager Jean Bouwer. Second-generation biomass-to-energy technologies... 

Local CNG market picking up despite limited infrastructure – Nersa

By: Samantha Herbst     3rd May 2013 While the growth of the compressed natural gas (CNG) market in South Africa had been slow, it is steadily picking up, especially in the transport sector, said National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) piped gas regulation executive manager Nomfundo Maseti. She addressed industry... 

Energy company unveils Malawi power-plant plan

By: Marcel Chimwala     26th April 2013 ASX-listed miner Intra Energy Corporation has announced plans to develop a 120 MW coal-fired power plant in Malawi that will burn coal from its newly acquired Nkhachira mine, in the north of the Southern African country. Intra Energy chairperson Graeme Robertson says the energy group, which will... 

Construction on Bronkhorstspruit biogas plant to start in June 

By: Idéle Esterhuizen     16th April 2013 Construction on the Bronkhorstspruit Biogas Plant (BBP) would start in June and be completed in the first quarter of next year, the project developer Bio 2 Watt says. Founder Sean Thomas told Engineering News Online that the project, with an initial installed capacity of 3 MW, would reach... 

DTI says it’s geared to disburse R5bn in industry incentives yearly 

By: Terence Creamer     5th April 2013 Through its current suite of industrial financing schemes, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) says it is currently in a position to extend about R5-billion a year to support industrial development, small businesses and export-promotion initiatives. The department’s Industrial Development... 

Biomass gasification could offer reliable off-grid alternative 

By: Schalk Burger     15th March 2013 The gasification of biomass to produce electricity can be used to promote the development of rural and off-grid areas or assist municipalities in their efforts to alleviate power shortages, creating sustainable jobs in the process, says biomass gasification company Carbo Consult & Engineering MD... 

Focus on high-margin business areas

By: Chantelle Kotze     8th March 2013 A key focus for JSE-listed paper, pulp and packaging group Sappi this year is to return its Southern African business to profitability by implementing various interventions aimed at repositioning the paper business to be more competitive and better serving the requirements of its customers. 

Stainless steel beneficial for biofuels sector

1st March 2013 Stainless steel is the material of choice for many applications in the bioethanol, biodiesel and biogas sectors as it presents a cost-efficient and reliable material solution, says international nonprofit organisation the Nickel Institute. 

Zimbabwe hopes for savings as it unveils ethanol-blending rules

By: Barnabas Thondhlana     1st March 2013 Zimbabwe stands to save about $2-million a month following government’s decision to pass new regulations making it mandatory for oil companies to sell blended fuel.  

Carbon tax from 2015, as new biofuels incentive is unveiled 

By: Terence Creamer     27th February 2013 The South African government has confirmed that a carbon tax will be phased in from January 1, 2015, as part of South Africa’s efforts to mitigate the effects of climate change and encourage energy efficiency measures. An updated policy paper will be published by the end of March for further... 

Sugarcane fibre could boost biofuel development – study 

By: Natasha Odendaal     15th February 2013 A doctorate study undertaken by Stellenbosch University Department of Process Engineering student Yuda Benjamin has found that the fibres of some varieties of sugarcane had the potential to boost the production of ethanol at a reduced cost. Benjamin said a new scientific method developed as part... 

2013 Indaba attracts greater interest, expects 20% growth

By: Samantha Herbst     8th February 2013 Africa Energy Indaba (AEI) organiser Siyenza hopes to further its objective of positioning Africa as the continent of energy opportunity by delivering a comprehensive event for the fifth consecutive year. Siyenza MD Liz Hart tells Engineering News that enquiry and interest levels have grown... 

Biofuels boom waits on paperwork 

By: Sapa     30th January 2013 Seven years after a government feasibility study showed a biofuels industry in South Africa could create tens of thousands of new jobs, the paperwork needed to establish it remains outstanding. Briefing MPs on Wednesday, the energy department's chief director for clean energy, Mokgadi Modise,... 

Malawi gives thumbs up to ethanol following study

By: Marcel Chimwala     14th December 2012 The Malawi government has approved the use of ethanol as an alternative fuel to power vehicles following research conducted by the country’s National Commission for Science and Technology (NCST). Ministry of Education, Science and Technology permanent secretary Lonely Magareta says that,... 

Small-scale synfuels production here to stay

By: Samantha Herbst     26th October 2012 While global petrochemicals groups Shell and Sasol have dominated the commercialisation of synthetic fuels (synfuels) for years, other gas-to-liquids (GTL) technology and associated synfuels businesses are advancing on a broad front, says clean synfuels production technology innovator Oxford... 

Biofuels lead to carbon reduction

By: Chantelle Kotze     5th October 2012 Carbon emissions and climate change advisory firm Promethium Carbon regards bioenergy as an additional solution to that of renewable energy in dealing with rising energy costs and the impacts of global warming, which are exacerbated by carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. However, the firm states that... 

Potential biofuels market could kick-start bioenergy industry

By: Sashnee Moodley     5th October 2012 South Africa has not yet embraced bioenergy, which comprises biofuels, biogas and bioelectricity, in earnest, says Stellenbosch University senior chair of energy research in biofuels Professor Emile van Zyl. 

Company provides training, equipment

By: Chantelle Kotze     21st September 2012 Sustainable, small-scale and decentralised biodiesel production is key to expanding the biofuels industry in South Africa and in other Southern African Development Community (SADC) member States, says biodiesel processing and equipment company Bioman Energy. 

SA biofuels industry awaits implementation of regulations

By: Chantelle Kotze     21st September 2012 The lack of regulation of mandatory blending of mineral fuels with biofuels, the pricing structures for the sale of biofuels and the incentives for licensed producers have led to challenges in establishing the industry in South Africa, says future producer of fuel-grade bioethanol Mabele Fuels GM... 

Engineering students construct 200 ℓ/d biodiesel plant

By: Chantelle Kotze     21st September 2012 The University of the Witwatersrand’s (Wits’) Engineers Without Borders – Wits student society started construction of a small-scale biodiesel plant this month. Wits third year chemical engineering student Robert Louw and numerous other engineering students have been researching small-scale... 

DoE’s mandatory blending regulations welcomed by grain producers

By: Chantelle Kotze     21st September 2012 South African grain producers association, Grain SA, has welcomed the Department of Energy’s (DoE’s) publication of the Mandatory Blending of Biofuel with Petrol and Diesel regulations in the Government Gazette last month. 

Western Cape restaurant used cooking oil turned into biodiesel

By: Idéle Esterhuizen     18th September 2012 Used cooking oil from restaurants has become a valuable resource in the Western Cape, with Envirodiesel converting it to biodiesel and selling it to companies to run a range of trucks, mining equipment and fishing vessels. Western Cape-based Envirodiesel produces about 20 000 l of biodiesel each... 

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