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Lynne Brown throws weight behind Eskom’s coal procurement policy

By: African News Agency      24th January 2017 Eskom will continue to “radically but fairly” transform coal procurement because this is a non-negotiable national imperative, Public Enterprise Minister Lynne Brown said on Tuesday. Eskom is currently embroiled in a bitter disagreement with one of its suppliers, Exxaro, over the diversified... 

Brown says Ministers to meet in mid-Feb to seek ‘answer’ to Eskom-IPP deadlock

By: Terence Creamer     24th January 2017 Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown says a meeting, involving herself, the Ministers of Energy and Finance, as well as Eskom, should take place by mid-February to seek an “answer” to the current standoff over the signing, by Eskom, of 37 outstanding power purchase agreements (PPAs) with... 

Davos boosts platinum fuel cell outlook with hydrogen council launch 

By: Martin Creamer     18th January 2017 Hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) offer the most natural solution for emission-free vehicles, discharging only water and requiring negligible change to current driving and refuelling habits, which is why 13 leading energy, transport and industry companies this week chose Davos... 

DoE extends comment period for energy plans to end of March 

By: Terence Creamer     9th January 2017 The Department of Energy (DoE) has formally extended the period for public comment on the draft Integrated Energy Plan (IEP) and the draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) base case until March 31. The closing date for written comment was initially set as February 15, after the two plans were... 

India persists with setting higher coal production targets despite offtake slowdown

By: Ajoy K Das     9th January 2017 Despite falling offtake and missed targets, India’s Coal Ministry is likely to persist with setting higher production targets for Coal India Limited (CIL) for 2017/18. Indications from key Ministry officials point towards a production target of 660-million tons a year during the next financial... 

Platinum fuel-cell plant being built in Korea by Implats project supplier

By: Martin Creamer     13th December 2016 The company that is building South Africa’s first multi-megawatt platinum-catalysed fuel-cell power plant in South Africa is simultaneously building an even larger fuel-cell power plant in Korea under a renewable energy classification. Doosan Fuel Cell America, which is laying on an eventual 20... 

Coal demand growth to stall as appetite wanes, according to IEA

By: Natasha Odendaal     12th December 2016 As appetite for other energy sources gain momentum, with the fast growth of renewables and a strong focus on energy efficiency, growth in global coal demand is expected to stall over the next five years, the International Energy Agency’s (IEA’s) latest ‘Medium-term Coal Market’ report shows.... 

South Africa must wake up to fuel cell race or risk losing out  

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     9th December 2016 South Africa is in a global race in fuel cell development and should not consider itself “special”, as there are a number of other countries that could reap benefits from their fuel cell plans far sooner, an analyst warned on Friday. Speaking during a panel discussion on the impact of fuel cell... 

Gold miner intends to do away with diesel

     9th December 2016 Canadian gold miner Goldcorp is looking to eliminate diesel consumption at its mine sites, explaining that this will hugely improve working conditions by removing diesel particulate and other gases such as nitrogen oxide and sulphur dioxide from the workplace.  Goldcorp has started implementing... 

Coordinated planning approach ‘imperative’ to Australia’s energy future - AEMO

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     8th December 2016 The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) has again highlighted the need for urgent policy reform to secure the nation’s energy future. In its latest National Gas Forecasting Report (NGFR), the AEMO warned of uncertainties and challenges, which will complicate gas demand forecasts for eastern... 

New Brunswick announces plan to phase out coal generation

By: Henry Lazenby     7th December 2016 Canada’s maritime province of New Brunswick is following in the footsteps of the federal government and other provinces such as Alberta and Ontario to phase out or announce plans to completely phase out coal-fired electricity generation by 2030. In its new action plan ‘Transitioning to a... 

Gas technology group makes case for flexibility as South Africa mulls power road map 

By: Terence Creamer     7th December 2016 Leading gas-engine technology provider Wärtsilä has started making the case for greater flexibility within South Africa's evolving electricity supply industry, as well as within the gas-to-power subsector itself, as the country seeks comment on its future electricity road map. The Finnish group,... 

Victoria needs more gas – EnergyQuest

     5th December 2016 New data from energy market analyst EnergyQuest has revealed that Victoria will need substantially more gas to provide long-term electricity supply. In its latest 'EnergyQuarterly', EnergyQuest noted on Monday that the state had less than a decade to get its gas supply in order, after data... 

South African iron-ore industry remains weak

By: Kimberley Smuts     2nd December 2016 Stagnating growth in China and low domestic demand continue to pressure the iron-ore mining industry in South Africa, which needs a coordinated approach by government and the private sector to attract investment, states privately-owned consultancy Core Consultants. Political uncertainty and... 

Alberta to pay coal power producers C$1.1bn to transition away from coal generation by 2030 

By: Henry Lazenby     25th November 2016 As part of the province’s ‘Climate Leadership Plan’, the Alberta government has agreed to pay three coal power producers operating in the province more than C$1-billion over the next 14 years to compensate them for prematurely shuttering their coal-fired power plants by 2030. The agreements will... 

Regulatory certainty could boost industry growth in Africa

By: Victor Moolman     25th November 2016 African oil and gas extraction operations are dealing with the effects of a lower oil price – at $46.90/ bl as opposed to $139.05/bl in 2008 – high operational costs because of accessibility, the slowdown in economic activity and, consequently, lower oil and gas demand. 

Uganda could have excess power as oil and gas infrastructure projects delayed

     25th November 2016 While energy shortages continue to restrain the economies of many African countries, some East African nations are experiencing unprecedented growth in the sector with renewable power projects in Uganda and Kenya, in particular, proving to be powerful drawcards for investors, with Burundi hopeful... 

Busa concerned about Eskom, govt misalignment on nuclear component of IRP 

By: Terence Creamer     24th November 2016 Business Unity South Africa (Busa) expressed concern on Thursday about a seeming lack of alignment between government and Eskom on the nuclear component of the newly released draft base case of the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP). In a statement welcoming the Department of Energy’s (DoE’s)... 

Dismissive of 2037 nuclear timeline in IRP base case, Eskom to release RFP by year-end 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd November 2016 State-owned power utility Eskom indicated on Tuesday that it planned to move ahead with a controversial request for proposals (RFP) for nuclear before the end of 2016, despite the base case in a draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) update indicating that the first reactor would only be required... 

Armadale confirms exceptional high-grade graphite deposit in Tanzania

By: Anine Kilian     22nd November 2016 Aim-listed Armadale Capital on Tuesday said the 2016 drilling campaign at the Mahenge Liandu graphite project, in Tanzania, had demonstrated consistent, commercially viable, high-grade graphite mineralisation of up to 15.7% total graphitic carbon (TGC) commencing from or near the surface. “The... 

Canada accelerates transition to clean power; to phase out coal-fired generation by 2030

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd November 2016 The Liberal Canadian federal government on Monday announced accelerated plans to transition the economy to renewable energy sources, saying it would aim to phase out coal-fired plants by 2030. According to Environment and Climate Change Minister Catherine McKenna, coal-fired electricity... 

As DoE prepares to release IRP, all eyes will be on nuclear 

By: Terence Creamer     17th November 2016 The Department of Energy (DoE) will on Tuesday November 22 release the long-waited draft of the updated Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity, as well as the draft Integrated Energy Plan (IEP). The release, which will take place in Pretoria, follows the Cabinet decision of November 2,... 

Renewables body urges new Eskom chief to restore communications and momentum 

By: Terence Creamer     14th November 2016 The South African Renewable Energy Council (Sarec) has expressed the hope that the new CEO of Eskom will restore “constructive communication” with the renewable-energy industry, which it says has faced “increasingly irrational and inaccurate criticism” during Brian Molefe’s tenure. Molefe... 

Molefe steps down, but denies it’s an admission of wrongdoing 

By: Terence Creamer     11th November 2016 Eskom CEO Brian Molefe announced on Friday that he would leave the State-owned electricity utility on January 1, 2017, but denied that the move was an admission of “wrongdoing on my part”. The decision follows the publication on November 2 of the Public Protector office’s 'State of Capture'... 

Trump may ‘dig’ coal, but industry’s outlook is flat at best

By: Bloomberg     11th November 2016 He can roll back regulations, slash government jobs, pull out of global treaties and strip the tax benefits from renewable energy. But can Donald Trump make coal great again? Probably not, say energy industry leaders and analysts. 

SA mining sector generally not yet ready to willingly adopt modernised mining methods

By: Dylan Slater     11th November 2016 The South African mining sector is, generally, not yet in a position to willingly adopt and implement an array of digitalised and modernised mining methods, contrary to advisory and general industry views on the need to modernise mines to prepare them for the future, according to University of... 

SA mining sector generally not yet ready to willingly adopt modernised mining methods

By: Dylan Slater     11th November 2016 The South African mining sector is, generally, not yet in a position to willingly adopt and implement an array of digitalised and modernised mining methods, contrary to advisory and general industry views on the need to modernise mines to prepare them for the future, according to University of... 

Coal should not be removed from South Africa’s energy mix – Jeffrey

By: Natasha Odendaal     8th November 2016 Eliminating coal-fired power generation from South Africa's energy mix will be detrimental to the country's economy, says Econometrix MD and senior economist Robert Jeffrey. Speaking at the 2016 Southern African Energy Efficiency Convention, in Kempton Park, on Tuesday, he suggested that coal... 

DMR must be challenged, good governance must be assured

By: Martin Creamer     7th November 2016 Mining has the wealth-generating potential to boost economies, but countries blessed with a mineral endowment must at least do their bit by assuring good governance. Regrettably, against the background of the recently released 'State of Capture' report of former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela,... 

Eskom in desperate search for industrial customers as surplus grows 

By: Terence Creamer     4th November 2016 Amid weak economic growth, falling industrial and mining demand and a rise in plant availability, Eskom has appealed to industrial customers to approach it for new connections, saying it is “open for business”. The State-owned utility announced a recovery in the energy availability factor (EAF)... 

Africa a focus for energy solutions in mining

By: Simone Liedtke     4th November 2016 The global mining industry risks wasting millions of dollars if greater emphasis is not placed on its employing renewable-energy solutions, such as solar photovoltaic (PV) technology and biogas, according to global nonprofit organisation Rocky Mountain Institute-Carbon War Room (RMI-CWR).  

Foreign demand still drives African mining

By: Sascha Solomons     4th November 2016 Africa’s mining and quarrying activities continue to be characterised by export-oriented activities and, as a result, the mining sector of this mineral-rich continent is driven primarily by the commodities appetite of the world’s largest economies. “While this is great for mining States in Africa... 

OLD GIVING WAY TO NEW

By: Martin Creamer     4th November 2016 Germany’s biggest energy company RWE owned all this, but that changed earlier this month when the RWE’s renewable energy offshoot Innogy SE hived itself off in a what was Europe’s biggest initial public offering (IPO) since that of Glencore in 2011. The IPO is a consequence of years of falling... 

Eskom continues to bemoan renewables costs as IPP uncertainty lingers

By: Terence Creamer     3rd November 2016 State-owned electricity utility Eskom offered little certainty on Wednesday about how its current stand-off with renewable-energy independent power producers (IPPs) would be resolved, while continuing to bemoan the high costs associated with its current contracts. However, CEO Brian Molefe did... 

Why electric cars excite the world’s biggest mining company

By: Bloomberg     1st November 2016 BHP Billiton, the world’s biggest miner, is hot for electric vehicles. The Melbourne-based resources giant, which mines metals and coal used for both steelmaking and fueling power plants, is increasingly optimistic that there’ll be a surge in demand for some of its products as consumers opt for... 

Acid mine drainage quick fix possible as water deficit looms, Oppenheimer, De Beers told

By: Martin Creamer     28th October 2016 Water-constrained Gauteng may see an acid mine drainage (AMD) quick-fix in order to save the fresh water from the Lesotho Highlands Water Project from being wasted on AMD dilution instead of being available to the economy, environmental adviser Dr Anthony Turton said on Wednesday. Delivering the... 

Energy sector trade show launch a ‘success’ – organiser

By: Simone Liedtke     28th October 2016 The inaugural PowerEx trade show, held last month alongside the biennial Electra Mining Africa at the Johannesburg Expo Centre, in Nasrec, has been declared a success by the show’s organiser, Specialised Exhibitions Montgomery. 

Mines turn to off-grid power amid low commodity prices, revenue

By: Simone Liedtke     28th October 2016 More companies are considering the use of an independent power producer (IPP) to meet their mines’ energy needs, as many projects are under pressure to achieve capital savings to weather the current operating environment comprising low commodity prices and diminished revenue streams. 

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