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Australia nailing its colours to coal mast, despite call to halt its use for power generation by 2050

By: Esmarie Iannucci     22nd February 2019 Amid rising electricity costs and flailing power supplies across the East Coast of Australia, the country’s government is standing firm on its decision to keep coal as one of its main sources of electricity generation. Australia’s East Coast is facing a plethora of electricity issues, with... 

Energy solutions provide power security for mining industry

By: Khutso Maphatsoe     22nd February 2019 With existing and new mines in remote areas requiring electricity, power generation equipment manufacturer and energy service company Himoinsa’s bespoke and integrated solutions can support mines with a prime or a back-up power system, should there be a electricity outage. “We understand the... 

Microgrid hybrid solutions spark interest from mining companies

By: Khutso Maphatsoe     22nd February 2019 Although the development of microgrid hybrid power solutions in South African mines is still in its infancy, multidisciplinary engineering consulting firm WSP Africa director Dinesh Buldoo says there is growing interest from mining companies to offset the risks to their business that power supply... 

R69bn in support for Eskom made conditional on restructuring 

By: Terence Creamer     20th February 2019 Finance Minister Tito Mboweni has turned down a proposal for R100-billion of Eskom’s debt to be transferred across to the National Treasury, but has instead announced R23-billion a year in financial assistance for the debt-laden utility that is directly tied to a restructuring of the business.... 

Radebe says IRP to be finalised in March and promises to address IPP issues soon 

By: Terence Creamer     19th February 2019 Energy Minister Jeff Radebe listed the finalisation of the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity as South Africa’s main energy priority and indicated on Tuesday the policy should be approved in March. Speaking on the sidelines of the 2019 edition of Africa Energy Indaba he said he would... 

Lithium Australia progresses towards producing cathode powders in Europe

By: Marleny Arnoldi     14th February 2019 ASX-listed Lithium Australia has identified a metallurgical process route which may provide security for the European renewable energy industry. The company aims to produce lithium from unconventional sources, using mine waste from the Sadisdorf lithium/tin project, in Saxony.  

Ramaphosa promises to correct lack of consultation with labour on Eskom unbundling 

By: Terence Creamer     14th February 2019 President Cyril Ramaphosa acknowledged on Thursday that there had been insufficient consultation with labour on government’s plan to unbundle Eskom into three separate companies, but he also stressed that the proposed restructuring would not result in privatisation. In his response to the debate... 

Barrick’s Loulo gold mine going solar

By: Martin Creamer     14th February 2019 As part of its cost-reduction me and drive to manage its carbon footprint, the Loulo-Gounkoto gold mine is to install a 24 MW off-grid solar hybrid plant to support its existing 63 MW thermal power station, by harnessing Mali’s abundant solar resource. The 24MW off-grid solar plant has the... 

Mining for coal still has a place in the power mix

12th February 2019 Wayne Lindecke, Director: Power Generation, WSP in Africa During the recent Investing in African Mining Indaba, concerns were noted on the impact that the move towards a ‘greener economy’ would have on coal mining – and, for base-load power production. However, coal mining and power production... 

Opinion: Are there really more jobs in coal than in renewables? 

By: Tobias Bischof-Niemz     12th February 2019 There is considerable support in South Africa for the notion that a transition in the electricity system from coal to renewable energy will trigger a jobs bloodbath at both Eskom and the Mpumalanga coal mines. A detailed analysis of the job numbers, however, suggests quite the opposite. In fact,... 

Lesedi to assist Mozal in its aluminium expansion project

By: Kim Cloete     7th February 2019 South African engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) company Lesedi has recently been awarded a contract to assist South32’s Mozal aluminum plant in its expansion project. The $38-million AP3XLE energy efficiency project was approved in the third quarter of 2017 and started the rollout... 

Sanedi ready to support the mining industry in energy efficiency

By: Kim Cloete     6th February 2019 The mining sector has been encouraged to use more renewable energy and tighten up on energy efficiency, with the support of the South African National Energy Development Institute (Sanedi). Energy Minister Jeff Radebe said the mining industry would need innovative and novel solutions to reduce... 

Gold Fields revamps Granny Smith circuits

By: Esmarie Iannucci     5th February 2019 Gold miner Gold Fields will install one of the world’s largest renewable energy microgids at its Granny Smith gold mine, in Western Australia. The miner on Tuesday said that more than 20 000 solar panels and a 2MW/1MWh battery system would be installed at the mine, with the grid to be... 

Global demand for coal rises despite uncertainty

By: Kim Cloete     4th February 2019 Despite a move to renewable energy, particularly in Europe, demand for coal globally soared in 2018, led by low calorific value (CV) coal demand. The strongest import markets were China and India, while Indonesia performed extremely strongly on the supply side. China’s demand for coal... 

Underlying demand growth remains a boon for cobalt and copper – ERG

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     1st February 2019 While many industrial commodities fell victim to geopolitical and macroeconomic woes in 2018, Eurasian Resources Group (ERG) CEO Benedikt Sobotka expects to see a strong upside for cobalt and copper this year as underlying demand rallies. With some additional volatility expected ahead, the severe... 

Invest in clean technology to counter the siege on the coal industry, Mantashe implores 

By: Kim Cloete     31st January 2019 The coal industry needs to counter the negative attitude towards the industry by investing in clean coal technology and funding research initiatives to find alternative markets for coal, says Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe. He told delegates at the opening of the fourteenth annual... 

PGM-using patents abound – CPM  

By: Martin Creamer     31st January 2019 Viable patents that involve the use of platinum group metals (PGMs) should be commercialised so that PGMs become less dependent on the automotive market, says CPM Group MD and founder Jeffrey Christian. CPM’s current projections, which are similar to those in the automotive and electricity supply... 

How South Africa could fix distressed Eskom

By: Bloomberg     31st January 2019 South Africa’s government will announce within a month how it plans to fix Eskom Holdings, the embattled state utility that supplies more than 90% of the nation’s power. There are no easy remedies. The company is R419-billion in debt, is losing money hand over fist, has way more staff than it... 

India to look at mining agreements during Argentine President's visit

By: Ajoy K Das     30th January 2019 India is preparing the groundwork to sign a slew of bilateral agreements with Argentina encompassing nuclear energy, and the mining of copper, lithium and cobalt during the visit of Argentine President Mauricio Marci, next month. The Argentine President will be leading a high-level business... 

Mining Charter boosts junior mining

By: Paige Müller     25th January 2019 After 20 years of poor policy and oppressive regulations having all but irradiated South Africa’s junior mining sector, the local junior mining industry is beginning to turn around as a result of the Mining Charter, says minerals explorer Orion Minerals CEO Errol Smart. Serving as Junior Miner... 

US copper projects gain steam thanks to electric vehicle trend

By: Reuters     24th January 2019 Once seen as a laggard in the global mining industry, US copper deposits have quietly drawn more than $1.1-billion in investments from small and large miners alike as Tesla and other electric carmakers scramble for more of the red metal. Four US copper projects are set to open by next year - the... 

Miners welcome Labour’s A$1bn hydrogen strategy

By: Esmarie Iannucci     23rd January 2019 The resources sector has welcomed the federal opposition’s A$1-billion hydrogen strategy, to fund hydrogen research and commercial development. Labour’s plan will see A$1-billion in funding from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation go towards supporting clean hydrogen development, with up to... 

Radebe insists IRP to be approved soon, amid Nedlac uncertainty 

By: Terence Creamer     18th January 2019 Energy Minister Jeff Radebe has reiterated that Cabinet could soon approve the long-awaited update to South Africa’s Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity, despite persistent suggestions that National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) sign-off of the document is still... 

Germany's 2019 hard coal imports seen rising after mining ends

By: Reuters     18th January 2019 Germany is expected to import 45-million tonnes of hard coal this year, up roughly 1.4% from 2018 despite mounting competition from renewable energy, as the closure of domestic mines reduces domestic supply, importers said on Friday. The total would comprise an estimated 30 million tonnes for... 

Mantashe highlights challenges facing South Africa’s mining sector

By: Rebecca Campbell     18th January 2019 Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe has stressed that the key factor in the future of South African mining was the human element. He did so when delivering the keynote address at the launch, in Pretoria last month, of a book – "The Future of Mining in South Africa: Sunset or Sunrise" – by... 

Merkel seeks to preserve jobs while phasing out coal plants

By: Bloomberg     15th January 2019 Angela Merkel’s commission plotting Germany’s exit from coal faces a tricky balancing act: how to stop mining and burning the dirtiest fossil fuel without whipping up more voter anxiety over job losses. Germany’s chancellor meets with coal-state governors who sit on the commission on Tuesday in... 

Hydrogen leap needed to aid platinum’s future 

By: Martin Creamer     11th January 2019 A South African decision to step firmly into the hydrogen age, like so many other countries are doing, has great potential benefit for the country. Because South Africa has better combined solar and wind resources than just about any other country, it is well positioned to generate hydrogen using... 

Barrick CEO to forge ahead in Latin America despite past strains

By: Bloomberg     11th January 2019 Barrick Gold Corp’s new boss intends to push ahead with plans to increase investment in the mineral-rich – but environmentally tricky – deposits straddling the Chile-Argentina border. “If you want to find elephants, go to elephant country,” CEO Mark Bristow, a South African geologist and big-game... 

Copper demand to outstrip production – Fitch

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     7th January 2019 Fitch Solutions Macro Research, a unit of Fitch Group, expects the global copper market will see a persistent undersupply over the coming years, as global consumption, driven by China’s power and infrastructure sectors and increasingly by rising electric vehicle production, continues to outpace... 

Australia flags A$122bn rebound for commodities projects

By: Bloomberg     21st December 2018 Stronger prices, a brighter longer-term demand outlook and the rise of battery metals are laying the ground for a potential revival in mining and energy projects in Australia, according to the world’s top exporter of iron ore, alumina and coking coal. The value of so-called committed projects –... 

Battery Minerals tables feasibility study for Balama

By: Esmarie Iannucci     12th December 2018 A feasibility study into Balama graphite project, in Mozambique, has estimated a capital cost of $69.4-million to support production of 58 000 t/y over a mine life of 27 years. ASX-listed Battery Minerals said on Wednesday that Balama would generate earnings before interest, tax, depreciation... 

ELB and NOVATEC forms partnership to combine innovation and new technologies into engineered solutions

By: Creamer Media Reporter      30th October 2018 ELB Engineering Services (Pty) Ltd (ELB) is pleased to announce a partnership agreement between ELB and NOVATEC New Technologies (NOVATEC), based in Labin, Croatia. NOVATEC is a computer engineering, process automation and system integration company and active in the South African market since... 

Ramaphosa declares end to 'investment strike' and unveils R290bn in commitments  

By: Terence Creamer     26th October 2018 President Cyril Ramaphosa declared an end to South Africa's proverbial 'investment strike', when he unveiled firm investment commitments of R290-billion across a diverse range of sectors, from mining and energy to infrastructure and manufacturing, at a well attended and vibrant investment... 

On-The-Air (26/10/2018) 

By: Martin Creamer     26th October 2018 South Africa is ahead of the world in the new race to develop innovative ‘power fuels’ that prevent climate change. An Australian company is selling its four big South African coal mines in Mpumalanga to new black owners. The Mandela Mining Precinct this week took its first steps towards the... 

CSIR points to 30 000 net jobs gain in electricity to 2030, despite fall in coal jobs 

By: Terence Creamer     26th October 2018 An analysis of the Department of Energy’s (DoE’s) recommended plan in the draft Integrated Resource Plan 2018 (IRP 2018) shows that there will be a 30 000 net increase in employment in the electricity industry to 2030, despite a 100 000 fall in coal jobs over the period. In its formal response to... 

Shake-up at US energy regulator raises specter of coal bailout

By: Bloomberg     26th October 2018 An untimely resignation has given one Kentucky Republican a second shot at saving coal. Neil Chatterjee, former energy adviser to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, has been tapped to lead the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission after Chairman Kevin McIntyre stepped down this week due to... 

Last of four mines to be completed

By: Halima Frost     26th October 2018 Petrochemicals and chemicals company Sasol forecasts it will complete the 10.5-million-ton-a-year Impumelelo colliery - formerly known as the Brandspruit mine - replacement project by June next year. The project involves the construction of a new 8.5-million-ton-a-year coal mine, which is... 

Cosatu calls for overhaul of draft IRP

By: Kim Cloete     24th October 2018 The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) has rejected the draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) 2018, calling for an overhaul. It also called for a firm commitment not to retrench workers as well as tougher, hard-hitting plans to halt looting and recover money stolen from Eskom. 

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