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Vol 6 Nr 6 2011 – R49

Future prospects for the South African carbon market

Country profile:


Adaptation strategies in the spotlight:

Run up to

Cop 17



Contents cover story With COP 17 on South Africa’s doorstep, the global community will be listening eagerly to Africa’s voice and the continent’s stance on climate change negotiations. It is not by chance that the 17th COP will be hosted by a African country. Africa needs to be prepared to answer some hard questions at the big summit. Answers that will have to explain where funds from the international community to support Africa was utilized. South Africa’s delegates also have a huge burden of responsibility on their shoulders in making sure that Africa’s needs like an equal distribution of green funds towards adaptation and mitigation strategies, is met. Read more about South Africa’s stance on adaptation strategies in the magazine on page 12.



4 eta Awards

30 The South African

carbon market

Country profile 6 An overview on Nigeria


9 Reported oil spill in Nigeria

32 Electrification of poor

Climate change

33 Teaming up to bring power to the people

10 Sustainability commitment rewarded once again


34 Keeping the lights on: a daunting task for Eskom

12 SA will put the spotlight on adaptation strategies

Energy efficiency Oil and gas

36 Leading a green revolution in the supply chain

18 Synergy for alternative energy

38 Energy efficiency: will it reach the boardroom?

19 House buying: petrol price influences decisions

40 SA cannot remain behind in global technology


42 Tax incentive regulations

12 Assisting pupils to shine

46 SA Astronomical

25 Helping to harness

Observatory stars in

energy conservation

solar energy

Green buildings

Instant update

26 Building industry to paint

48 President Zuma opens new

the town green

SABS test laboratories 49 New appointment at DNV

Bio-energy 28 Opportunities in

Energy events

51 Energy events

Algae research


Media in Africa (Pty) Ltd • International Contact Information: Tel: +27 12 347 7530 • Fax: +27 12 347 7523 E-mail: Postal Address: PO Box 25260, Monument Park, 0105 Republic of South Africa

COP17 is finally here By the time you read this, COP17 will be well underway in Durban with 194 countries represented in the biggest event on the climate change agenda worldwide. Though there is some scepticism as to whether a positive outcome will be achieved, it still provides an exceptional opportunity for South Africa to demonstrate leadership and their negotiating acumen to the rest of the world. In the current worldwide financial downturn and uncertainty of the European financial markets, carbon and climate change matters moves down the ladder of importance. True, in an unstable economy it is very difficult to take long term views of what has in the past been “environmental” issues. But the issue of climate change has never been more fundamental to decisions we make now than ever before. We are at the cusp - we have to make the hard choices now as the consequences are too dire, and expensive to consider. There are a myriad of options available to countries and governments to combat climate change, but a lot of the leadership, innovation and initiative shown in this regard comes from the private sector. Companies are innovating and putting their dollars into R&D, new technologies and CSI projects, for a better world. Governments would do well to look to the private sector for guidance on issues affecting our businesses, our communities and our inheritance. I pray that leadership will win at COP17 and that worldwide there will be applause for the difficult and, sometimes, unpopular decisions taken by 194 countries in Durban.

Marlene E van Rooyen

Physical Address: First Floor, Unit G, Castle Walk Corporate Park Cnr Nossob & Swakop Streets, Erasmuskloof Ext. 3, Pretoria, Republic of South Africa

The 25º In Africa team: Editor Marlene van Rooyen Tel: +27 83 327 3746 E-mail: Founder Schalk Burger (1943 – 2006) Advertising sales professional E-mail: business unit coordinator Zuerita Gouws Tel: +27 12 347 7530 E-mail: Design and Layout Ilze Janse van Rensburg Journalist Nichelle Lemmer Tel: +27 72 209 2040 E-mail: Freelance Journalists Dave Soons Imbewu Sustainability Andrew Gilder – Climate change and CDM legal specialist Publishing Manager Liezel van der Merwe Financial Manager Fanie Venter

25º in Africa: Africa’s Independent Energy Publication covers the whole gamut of energy sources, production needs, environmental impacts and the current issues surrounding them. 25º in Africa’s mission is to disseminate information on any and all energy-related issues, with an emphasis on developments in Africa and the impact on the environment. The focus of the publication is on energy, but it carries related information to provide a broad, unbiased and independent view of all the pertinent issues. Copyright: The copyright for all content of this publication is strictly reserved. No part of this may be copied in part or fully without the express written permission of the editor. Disclaimer: Views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher, the editorial team or its agents. Although the utmost care is taken to ensure accuracy of the published content, the publisher, editor and journalists cannot be held liable for inaccurate information contributed, supplied or published. Contributions: The editor welcomes contributions and encourages items of interest to our readers in the energy sector. All advertisements and editorials are placed solely at the discretion of the editor and subject to prior approval. 25º in Africa reserves the right to edit, withhold or alter any editorial material to complement the style of the publication. Subscriptions: 25º in Africa is published bi-monthly as a print publication. 25º in Africa is also available as a free web download. For more information, please contact the editor or editor’s assistant on Tel: +27 347 7530 or visit us on

Accountant Gerda Bezuidenhout E-mail: Proofreader Elizabeth Kruger debtors and reception Karin Roos reception Assistant Lizzy Mathibela Reproduction & Printing Business Print Centre


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eta Awards

attract record level of entries A staggering amount of entries received for the eta Awards this year is testament to the prominence that energy-efficiency and environmental issues have across various South African sectors. This is the opinion of Dr Steve Lennon, divisional executive (Eskom International), after the eta Awards attracted a record number of entries this year. Announcing the winners at the awards evening, which was held on 9 November, Dr Lennon said it was encouraging to see the high standard of entries that were received from all sectors of South African business, industry, commerce and the private sector. “Interest in the eta Awards, which has been sponsored by Eskom since 1985, was at an all-time record level,” he said. According to him, all award winners have made a major contribution to the promotion of energy usage and environmental management, setting a standard that will encourage others to follow.

2011 eta Awards winners Industrial Winner: Colgate Palmolive – Boksburg facility

cycle calcium batteries. The system was designed to operate independently, without using the national energy grid, if required. Efficiency champion: community Winner: Funsile Zothe for his energyefficiency project in Kavali Village Funisile Zothe is a general worker at Three Crowns Junior Secondary School in Lady Frere, Kavali Village, in the Eastern Cape. Funisile is the driving force behind one of the most innovative renewable energy-efficiency projects in Africa. The school, which accommodates about 150 pupils, participated in this special project for four years now and helped him to promote a sustainable environment. Some of the initiatives that Funisile implemented are a biogas facility, wastewater treatment, a 2kW wind/solar hybrid system and 12 vermiculture worm farms. Efficiency champion: industry Winner: James Cruickshank from Mediclinic

Over a period of ten years, Colgate Palmolive has implemented an energy-conservation programme at their Boksburg facility that reduced their energy consumption by 45%, whilst increasing their production by more than 100%. This means that they are now utilising less than 27% of energy per unit of products produced, when compared to their energy usage in 2000. Residential Special award: Solek – Kleinmond low-cost housing project In an experimental project, 410 low-income houses were constructed by developers who used non-pressurised solar water heaters without electrical back-up and a photovoltaic lighting system in the houses. The PV lighting system was designed specifically for South African conditions by using 80 Wp poly-chystalline solar panels, duel-axis adjustments and semi-deep

James Cruickshank, group manager of planned maintenance and services at Mediclinic, introduced the hospital group to new energy technology for sanitary water heating. His idea was used in

Mediclinic private hospitals across the country, resulting in savings of R1,8-million or 3,5 MWh per annum. It all started when he successfully installed solar water heaters at seven hospitals. He then saw the opportunity to bring about further savings by installing heat pumps and reduced electricity bills by between 60% and 70%. Plans for the near future in the Mediclinic group include rolling out the solar water heater and heat pump combination to the rest of the 54 hospitals across the subcontinent. Energy savings in households Winner: Dr Anthony Keen Dr Anthony Keen is a medical doctor with no electrical engineering experience or knowledge, but he is showing great interest and passion in


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the energy field. The commitment from himself and his family since 1984 is evident. He has brought his monthly electricity consumption down from 1 263kWh to 350kWh, a 71% reduction. Apart from using solar water heating, Dr Keen implemented all the technologies himself. He also used his interest in the energy field as an opportunity to communicate with the country’s most progressive municipality, Cape Town, on energy-related matters. Commercial Winner: Woolworths In an effort to reduce energy consumption and support sustainable energy usage, Woolworths invested in UGU Engineering Solutions’ automatic load-control system. They have managed to save 11 783 253kWh year-on-year. This was verified by using two years’ worth of measurable data gained from online metering, which equates to an independently verified 12,97% saving on the overall total in the 2010/2011 financial year. Their energy usage has decreased by 18% from the 2004 benchmark. But the buck doesn’t stop there. They have successfully rolled out new lighting and energy-measurement technologies, as well as retrofitting refrigeration technologies. Woolworths also embarked on reviewing distribution methods to meet the 30% relative reduction target by 2012. When you have a R220million electricity bill as a group, this is a remarkable saving. Innovation Winner: Utillabs The Utillabs utility loadmanagement system is a multi-functional system. It provides home owners with an overall picture of their energy consumption, while providing municipalities with monitoring, analysis and communication tools that help to optimise efficiencies and processes, and enables them to deliver better customer service. One of the devices in the system is the electricity-demand display instrument (Eddi). Eddi is a clever, plug-and-play device that accurately monitors and displays a household’s electricity consumption in real-time. Aside from delivering feedback on current energy usage, Eddi can be used to alert electricity consumers when the power supply in their area is constrained. An alert on the display will notify the customer of the load limit that has been set by the utility in order to maintain the stability of the electricity network and prevent a power outage.

Energy-efficiency awareness Winner: Pick n Pay With an energy bill of R150 000 per month across all their stores, Pick n Pay realised that they had to start saving electricity. Several opportunities were identified to reduce their consumption. Many of the ideas were based on simply changing people’s behaviour to switch off lights, air-conditioning and bakery equipment left on during non-operating hours. Energy Partners designed an E-Board, or energy dashboard, to highlight wasted energy to store managers. The managers were trained on basic energy principles and the use of the E-boards. Irrespective of the size of the store, the store manager is responsible for energy consumption and targets are adjusted as more information regarding business processes becomes available. The aim of the programme is to set the optimum balance between operations and energy-efficiency. Young designers Winner: Greenwood Independent School A team of youngsters at the Greenwood Independent School in Plettenberg Bay examined the relationship between climate, building design and energy usage. The team looked at how government houses are currently designed, taking field trips to local townships to look at house construction. Based on their visits, the youngsters identified ways to make the houses more energyefficient. The youngsters were invited to visit the local mayor to present their research findings. The mayor informed them that it would probably change the way RDP houses in the local area would be built in the future. For the past 21 years, Eskom and the Department of Energy have rewarded excellence in the field of energy-efficiency. The purpose of the awards is to recognize exceptional efforts in the more efficient usage of energy by individuals, students, companies or other institutions. The awards comprise a cash amount of R30 000 for the winner in each category and R5 000 for each of the two runners-up in each category, subject to the judges’ discretion.

Eskom Holdings Annamarie Murray E-mail: Website:

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country pro fil e: ni sogeria uth africa


The British influence and control over Nigeria grew through the 19th century. A series of constitutions after World War II grated Nigeria greater autonomy and the country’s independence was established after that. It gained full independence in October 1960 as a federation of three regions (northern, western, and eastern) under a constitution that provided for a parliamentary form of government. In 1963, Nigeria altered its relationship with the United Kingdom by proclaiming itself a federal republic and promulgating a new constitution. A fourth region (the midwest) was established that year.


Nigeria is a developing country in Western Africa that has experienced periods of political and communal violence. It has the largest population on the continent and is inhabited by over 150-million people.

Following nearly 16 years of military rule, a new constitution was adopted in 1999 and a peaceful transition to civilian government was completed. The emergence of a democratic Nigeria in May 1999 ended the military rule. Olusegun Obasanjo became the steward of a country suffering economic stagnation and the deterioration of most of its democratic institutions. The government continues to face a daunting task of reforming the country’s petroleum-based economy, whose revenues have been squandered through corruption and mismanagement.

The country’s recorded history dates back to about 1000 AD in the northern cities of Kano and Katsina. In the centuries that followed, these Hausa kingdoms and the Bornu empire near Lake Chad prospered as important terminals of north-south trade between North African Berbers and forest people who exchanged slaves, ivory and kola nuts for salt, glass beads, coral, cloth, weapons and brass rods.

Nigeria continues to experience longstanding ethnic and religious tensions. Although both the 2003 and 2007 presidential elections were marred by significant irregularities and violence, Nigeria is currently experiencing its longest period of civilian rule since independence. The general elections of April 2007 market the first civilian to civilian transfer of power in the country’s history.

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c o u ntry pro fi le : ni geria

Land use: Arable land: 33,02% Permanent crops: 3,14% Other: 63,84% Natural hazards: periodic droughts, flooding. Current environmental issues: soil degradation, rapid deforestation, urban air and water pollution, desertification, oil pollution in water, air and soil has caused serious damage from oil spills, the loss of arable land and rapid urbanisation. GDP (purchasing power parity): $377,9-billion (2010 est.) GDP (official exchange rate): $216,8-billion (2010 est.) GDP real growth rate: 8,4% GDP per capita (PPP): $2 500 (2010 est.) GDP composition by sector: Agriculture: 31,9% Industry: 32,9% Services: 35,2% Industrial production growth rate: 4% Electricity production: 21,92-billion KWh (2007 est.) Electricity consumption: 19,21 KWh (2007 est.) Electricity – exports: 0 kWh (2008 est.) Electricity – imports: 0 kWh (2008 est.) Oil – production: 2,211-million bbl/day (2009 est.) Oil – consumption: 280 000 bbl/day (2007 est.) Oil – exports: 2,327-million bbl/day (2007 est.)

In April 2011, the Independent National Electoral Commission organised legislative, gubernatorial and presidential elections. The opposition Action National Congress captured additional governorships and National Assembly seats, although the majority of these positions continued to be held by the ruling party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The leader of the ruling party, Goodluck Jonathan, captured 59% of the national vote, beating his main rival, Muhammadu Buhari of the Congress for Progressive Change. While imperfect, the elections were considered Nigeria’s most successful since its return to multiparty democracy in 1999 and reserved a downward trajectory of successively flawed election processes. President Jonathan was sworn in on 29 May 2011. In January 2010, Nigeria assumed a non-permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council for the 2010/11 term. Location: Western Africa, bordering the Gulf of Guinea, between Benin and Cameroon. Climate: Varies, equatorial in the south, tropical in the centre and arid in the north. Terrain: Southern lowlands merge into central hills and plateaus, mountains in the southeast, plains in the north. Elevation extremes: Lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0m. Highest point: Chappal Waddi 2 419m. Natural resources: natural gas, petroleum, tin, iron ore, coal, limestone, niobium, lead, zinc, arable land.

Oil – pimports: 170 000 bbl/day (2007 est.) Oil – proved reserves: 37,5-billion bbl/day (2007 est.) Natural gas – production: 32,82-billion cu m (2008 est.) Natural gas – consumption: 12,28-billion cu m (2008 est.) Natural gas – exports: 20,55-billion cu m (2008 est.) Natural gas – imports: 0 c um (2008 est.) Natural gas – proved reserves: 5,246-billion (2010 est.) Current account balance: $27,77-billion (2010 est.) Exports: commodities Petroleum and petroleum products 95%, cocoa, rubber. Vol 6 NR 6 2011

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country pro fil e: ni geria

Imports: $34,18-billion (2010 est.) Import commodities: machinery, chemicals, transport equipment, manufactured goods, food and live animals. Debt – external: 11,02-billion (31 Desember 2010 est.) Oil in Nigeria Nigeria has the second largest oil reserves in Africa and is the continent’s primary oil producer. The light, sweet quality of Nigerian crude makes it a preferred gasoline feedstock. The country’s economy is heavily dependent on the oil sector, which accounts for over 95% of export earnings and about 40% of government revenues. The oil industry is primarily located in the Niger Delta, an area that is still a source of conflict. Local groups seeking a share of the oil wealth often attack the oil infrastructure and staff, forcing companies to declare force majeure on oil shipments. At the same time, oil theft, commonly referred to as “bunkering”, leads to pipeline damage that is often severe, causing a loss of production, pollution and forcing companies to shut-in production. The industry has been blamed for polluting air, soil and water leading to observed losses in arable land and decreasing fish stocks. Nigeria had an estimated 37,2-billion barrels of proven oil reserves in January 2011. The majority of reserves are found along the country’s Niger River Delta and offshore in the Bight of Benin, the Gulf of Guinea and the Bight of Bonny. Current exploration activities are mostly focused in the deep and ultra-deep offshore with some activities in the Chad basin, located in the northeast of the country. The instability in the Niger Delta has caused significant amounts of shut-in production and several companies to declare force majeure on oil shipments. EIA estimates Nigeria’s nameplate oil production capacity to have been close to 2,9-million barrels per day (bbl/d) at the end of 2010, but as a result of attacks on oil infrastructure, daily crude oil production ranged between 1,7-million and 2,1-million barrels. Towards the end of 2009 an amnesty was declared and the militants came to an agreement with the government, whereby they handed over weapons in exchange for cash payments and training opportunities. This amnesty has led to decreased attacks and some companies have been able to repair damaged oil infrastructure. However, the lack of progress in job creation and economic development has led to increased bunkering and other criminal attacks, which can significantly damage oil infrastructure. Considerable attention has been drawn to the environmental damage caused by oil spills in the Niger Delta. According to the Nigerian National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency, approximately 2 400 oil spills had been reported between 2006 and 2010 that resulted from sabotage, bunkering and poor infrastructure. The amount of oil spilled in Nigeria has been estimated to be around 260 000 barrels per year for the past 50 years. The oil spills have caused land, air and water pollution severely affecting surrounding villages by decreasing fish stocks, contaminating water


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supplies and arable land. More recently, the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) released a study on Ogoniland and the extent of environmental damage from over 50 years of oil production in the region. The study confirmed community concerns regarding oil contamination across land and water resources, stating that the damage is ongoing and estimating that it could take 25 to 30 years to repair. In 2010, the total oil production in Nigeria was slightly over 2,46-million bbl/d, making the country the largest oil producer in Africa. Crude oil production averaged close to 2,15-million bbl/d for the year. Recent offshore oil developments combined with the restart of some shut-in onshore production have boosted crude production to an average of 2,17-million bbl/d for the month of July 2011. Planned upstream developments should increase Nigerian oil production in the medium term, but the timing of these start-ups will depend heavily on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) and the fiscal/regulatory terms it imposes on the oil industry. Many of the planned projects described below have already been delayed. Energy in Nigeria In addition to oil, Nigeria holds the largest natural gas reserves in Africa but has limited infrastructure in place to develop the sector. Natural gas that is associated with oil production is mostly flared, but the development of regional pipelines, the expansion of liquefied natural gas (LNG) infrastructure and policies to ban gas flaring are expected to accelerate growth in the sector, both for export and domestic use in electricity generation. In order to remedy some of the oil, natural gas and electricity industry problems, the Nigerian government is currently debating a PIB that is designed to reform the entire energy sector. The bill was first introduced in 2009 and although parts of the PIB have recently been made law, the bill in its entirety continues to be debated by the National Assembly. This ongoing debate had delayed investments in oil exploration, project development and also affected the natural gas sector by delaying planned liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), in 2008 the total energy consumption was 4,4 quadrillion btu. Of this, combustible renewables and waste accounted for 81,3% of the total energy consumption. This high percentage share represents the use of biomass to meet off-grid heating and cooking needs, mainly in rural areas. IEA data for 2009 indicates that the electrification rates for Nigeria were 50% for the country as a whole. Approximately 76-million people do not have access to electricity in the country. Nigeria has vast natural gas, coal and renewable energy resources that could be used for domestic electricity generation. The utilisation of these resources is hampered by the country’s lack in policies to harness resources and develop or improve the electricity infrastructure. Information provided with courtesy of, and, to which full acknowledgement and thanks are given.

c o u ntry p ro fi le : so u t h a fri c a


oil spill

in Nigeria badly pollutes swamps A Nigerian environmental group claimed an oil spill from a pipeline operated by the Italian oil and gas company ENI badly polluted an area in the south of the Niger Delta region. The spill, which reportedly took place in September, allegedly polluted the swamps of the Ikeinghenbiri area of the Bayelsa state in the main oil-producing region. “The volume of the spill is exceptionally high and in some cases it is difficult to separate the crude from the water,” Environmental Rights Action field monitor Morris Alagoa told AFP, an international news agency, a day after he visited the village. According to Alagoa, the whole length of the swamp was turned black from the oil in some areas. He could not give an estimate of the size of the area polluted or the volume of crude spilled.

the pollution. Pipeline damage and resulting spills are common in the Niger Delta region, often as a result of oil theft to feed a lucrative black market.

The cause of the spill could not be immediately established. ENI said earlier this month that one of its pipelines had been sabotaged and was undergoing repairs, though it was unclear if this incident was the cause of

A United Nations report in August said decades of oil pollution in Ogoniland, another area of the Niger Delta, may require the world’s largest ever cleanup.

A 20-year track record in providing world-class climate change, energy and sustainable development solutions across Africa and internationally. o Carbon footprinting: over 1,300 organisational and product carbon footprints; accredited CDP alliance partner

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For further information: t +27 (0)11 253 3400 • f +27 (0)11 804 1038 • Building 18, Woodlands Office Park, Western Service Road, Woodmead, Johannesburg, South Africa, 2080 o Vol 6 NR 6 2011 i n A fr i c a 2 5


climate change

Sustainability commitment rewarded once again Siegmar Proebstl, the chief executive officer of Siemens South Africa.

Having been recently ranked as the most sustainable company in the industry in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for the fourth year running, Siemens took the first place in the diversified industrials category and scored 90 out of a possible 100 points – the highest rating it has achieved to date and a further improvement on 2010’s result of 87 points. This further underlines Siemens’ commitment to sustainability and the way in which employees implement sustainable principles on a daily basis. While the company focuses on the economic and social dimensions of sustainability, it is also focused on extending its environmental portfolio, emissions reduction and efficient use of natural resources. In fact, Siemens has exceeded its targeted revenue generation of €25-billion in 2010 from its environmental portfolio. “With a revenue totalling €28-billion (R273-billion) at the end of the 2010 fiscal year, the company has exceeded this target earlier than planned,” reports Siegmar Proebstl, the chief executive officer of Siemens South Africa.

“With a revenue totalling €28-billion (R273-billion) at the end of the 2010 fiscal year, the company has exceeded this target earlier than planned,” reports Siegmar Proebstl, the chief executive officer of Siemens South Africa. “These solutions are particularly relevant within an African context, bearing in mind that in November 2011 we will see the United Nations holding the 17th Conference of the Parties in Durban, KZN – the first time that this global conference on climate change will be hosted in Africa,” he continues. “When it comes to climate change, research has revealed that Africa will be the hardest hit by climatic changes,” Proebstl says. As such, developments in renewable energy technologies (particularly in South Africa) open the country to a wealth of opportunity, and renewable energy development has the potential to create new industries and generate thousands of jobs. “Siemens believes there is significant potential for renewable energy in Africa and the company’s global headquarters maintain that South Africa has the ability to become a global leader in this field. To this end, Siemens AG has committed to developing a centre of competence for wind power in South Africa to serve the local market as well as the African continent and


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the Middle East. In this way, Siemens will play its role in skills development and exporting South African competencies,” Proebstl reveals. However, the sun is the most abundant source of energy for the earth. Because it experiences an average of 2 500 hours of sunshine every year, South Africa is perfectly positioned to provide concentrated solar power and photovoltaic energy. Indeed, the country’s solar radiation output is twice that of Europe, making it one of the highest in the world – and the sun is the most readily accessible resource available. Concentrated solar power provides the greatest opportunities for job creation and skills development in South Africa, and it is within this space that Siemens has committed to focus its energies. “We actually built South Africa’s first renewable energy project back in 1892, when Siemens and Halske was commissioned by the Cape Town City Council to construct a power station consisting of two 150 kW generators on the banks of the Molteno Reservoir,” comments Proebstl. Ultimately, sustainable products are the face of the future and they provide significant cost-saving benefits for customers – most importantly, the greatest benefits these solutions offer is their ability to reduce carbon emissions and in so doing, protecting the environment for future generations. Siemens Ltd Tel: +27 (11) 652 2146 E-mail: Website:

CLIMATIC TRIVIA Did you know? • That all human activity together puts roughly 37-billion tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year? • That 20 years ago, the annual total of emissions was less than 25-billion tonnes? • That scientists have determined that if we want to stop further climate change at a 2ºC increase, global emissions have to peak in 2016? The Guardian

c li m ate c h ang e

Science breakthrough to change energy-efficiency in building industry

The building industry’s contribution to climate change could be minimized to the bare essentials in the future with the introduction of a new building material called novel non-deformed energy storage phase change material (PCM) to the industry, which will cut energy usage of a building by more than a third. This will be possible if the development of this material by the University of Nottingham Ningbo China (UNNC) is successful. The remarkable quality of the PCM to retain and release heat according to specific temperature requirements will drastically change energy-efficiency standards in buildings. According to the UNNC, it has the unique advantage of possessing a larger energy-storage capacity with a faster thermal response than existing materials. This heat-regulating material can also be manufactured quite cheaply. The UNNC says the material can be used in existing buildings and new buildings and could basically be applied anywhere, from walls and roofs to wallpaper. It looks like a circular tablet with the circumference of a large coin in the laboratory, but can be manufactured in a variety of shapes and sizes and can even be sprayed on an unobtrusive microscopic film to surfaces. Not just a pipe dream A patent application for the development of this unique material was approved in China in July and patent applications are in the pipeline in other countries. The project leader, Professor Jo Darkwa, who is the director of the Centre for Sustainable Energy Technologies at the UNNC, Oliver Su, a research associate, and PhD student Tony Zhou are behind the invention. Various sponsors and partners are already involved in the research, including the Ningbo Science and Technology Bureau and private companies based in China. “The construction industry produces more carbon emissions than any other industry in the world, even more than aviation. In China, the building sector is one of the highest energy-consuming sectors, accounting for about 30% of the total energy usage and also a significant proportion of pollutant emissions,” Professor Jo Darkwa says. He believes that if the product is used widely, it could make a huge impact on the world’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions. The potential of the material is endless as it could save

up to 35% of energy in a building and it could possibly also be used in solar panels and light-emitting diode (LED) lighting to enhance the efficiency of these alternative energy-generating technologies. The UNNC will also do further research to explore types of paints that can be used with PCM. They aim to do studies to determine the long-term environmental impacts of the use of the material and ways to improve the production of PCM to enhance cost-efficiency and ensure the process is environmentally-friendly. Darkwa says the basic structure of the material has to be engineered for a specific temperature before it can be used. “The next step is to create a material that can be used for both heating and cooling applications.” According to him, the material won’t make air-conditioners obsolete because there is still a need to control humidity and air movement, but the material will reduce the amount of excessive heat energy in a room. Transforming the building industy in China Scientists at the Centre for Sustainable Energy Technologies are also involved in various other projects aimed at finding ways to reduce the global carbon footprint emitted by the world’s buildings. Darkwa and Dr David Chow, who leads the architectural environment engineering degree programme, played a major role in facilitating transformation in new building regulation laws in Ningbo, China. Developers in the city are compelled to include at least one sustainable energy technology to reduce the environmental impact during the construction process. China’s national government is on a major drive to improve the country’s environmental track record. UNNC scientists are increasingly involved in making recommendations to policy makers at the highest levels. The UNNC will also host China’s second international symposium on low carbon buildings. Scientists, researchers, government officials and practitioners will come together to present and discuss recent research outputs and demonstration projects. Full acknowledgement and thanks are given to the UNNC for the information used in this article.

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climate change

South Africa will put

the spotlight on adaptation strategies South Africa will fight for a more focused approach to adaptive climate change strategies and actions at the UNFCCC‘s COP17 climate change negotiations, which will be held in the first week of December in Durban. Dr Sylvester Mpandeli of the South African Multi-Sector Climate Change Working Group for the Department of Environmental Affairs told the audience at a recent National Business Initiative (NBI) seminar on climate change that Africa has a low adaptive capacity to deal with changes. “Africa is more susceptible to climate change because of the limited resources to deal with the effects of changes in climatic conditions,” he says. Taking adaptation strategies to the next level

He indicates that sectors such as the health department, human settlements, biodiversity, water and agricultural sectors will need to consider adaptation in their plans. “Now is the time to focus on developing long-term adaption strategies to prepare Africa for the future.” He says these plans should include strategies to use user-friendly technology, create opportunities to do scientific-based climate change research and do a risk and vulnerability assessment of each sector. “We would also like to create a national platform to distribute and exchange information on climate change between different sectors.”

Dr Mpandeli says Africa will drive this agenda further and have included it in their negotiation position that will be heard at COP17. “Adaptation is central to any Durban deal,” he says. “South Africa will remind the global community of their commitment to focus on concrete implementation of adaptation actions that were decided upon in the recent Cancun climate change meeting.” According to him, the establishment of an adaption committee that will be responsible for developing a global adaptation framework is one the initiatives South Africa will drive forward. “At the moment there is a tug of war between developing and developed countries regarding the accountability of the committee and to whom it should report back to.”

This also means that the Department of Tourism should jump on board and develop various case studies to determine the impact long-term weather changes will have on the industry. “We want various sectors to work together to tackle the challenges Africa face.” He says the department will engage big metros on a local level to make sure that these municipalities take green policies seriously. “We will empower them with a climate change municipality toolkit to facilitate them in having a green approach to running these cities.”

He says it is of utmost importance for African countries to focus intensely on adaptation strategies as evidence show that Africa is already struggling to adapt to climate change. “There is no way that Africa will cope with climate change impacts if the continent does not receive support from developed countries, hence a dire need for the establishment of mitigation actions with finance, technology, and capacity building,” he says.

Edna Molewa, the Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs, officially announced the approval of the National Climate Change Response Policy in mid-October. “South Africa now has a clear roadmap of how the country should respond to the global climate change challenge,” she says.

This is why South Africa will also be watching closely when various finance mechanisms are operationalised at COP17, like the Green Climate Fund. “South Africa’s position will be to secure an equal allocation of funds and resources for mitigation and adaptation actions,” he explained. Dr Mpandeli says the responsibility of South Africa is to put the spotlight on adaptive strategies do not stop at the COP17 negotiations. “We want developed countries to recognise that adaptation needs as much funding and attention as mitigation.” He says South Africa needs access to finance, technology and other resources to cope with the impact of climate change. New national policy will lead the way The National Climate Change Response Policy (NCCRP) was finally approved by the cabinet on 18 October. Dr Mpandeli says the policy is an


integrated framework that requires climate change adaptation interventions to be mainstreamed into all relevant sector plans. “The majority of sectors are already taking action in the country,” he says.

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Overview of the policy

According to her, the NCCRP will guide the government’s approach to climate change impacts and facilitate a transition to a climate-resilient and low-carbon economy. “The policy will also make it easier for all sectors of society to take part in the effort to mainstream climate-resilient development.” The development of the policy started six years ago. “It was finalized before the forthcoming COP17.” Molewa says the policy confirms that climate change is already a measurable reality and along with other developing countries, South Africa is especially vulnerable to its impacts. “The White Paper presents the South African government’s vision for an effective climate change response.” In the policy South Africa’s response to climate change has two objectives: • To effectively manage the inevitable climate change impacts through interventions that build and sustain South Africa’s social, economic and

c li m ate c h ang e

environmental resilience and emergency response capacity. • To make a fair contribution to the global effort to stabilise greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that avoids dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system within a timeframe that enables economic, social and environmental development to proceed in a sustainable manner. The policy is guided by various principles set out in the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the National Environmental Management Act, the Millennium Declaration and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. In terms of adaptation, section 5 of the policy includes a risk-based process to identify and prioritise short- and medium-term adaptation interventions to be addressed in sector plans. The process will also identify the adaptation responses that require coordination between sectors and departments and it will be reviewed every five years. For the immediate future, sectors that need particular attention are water, agriculture and forestry, health, biodiversity and human settlements. Resilience to climate variability and climate change-related extreme weather events will be the basis for South Africa’s future approach to disaster management and the country will use region-wide approaches where appropriate. South Africa’s approach to mitigation is addressed in section 6 of the policy and balances the country’s contribution as a responsible global citizen with the international effort to curb global emissions with the economic and social opportunities presented by the transition to a lower-carbon economy. In section 7, the policy notes that government will take a multi-pronged approach to addressing and managing response measures, especially in respect of these that may have negative consequences. Section 8 of the policy introduces a suite of near-term priority flagship programmes consisting of both new initiatives and the scaling up of existing initiatives that will be implemented while the first sector desired emission-reduction outcomes and carbon budgets are being developed and initial adaptation interventions prioritised. The policy deals with jobs in section 9 and aims to limit jobs contraction to these areas of the economy where excessive carbon intensity is unsustainable, whilst promoting and expanding the green economy sectors. To mainstream climate-resilient development, section 10 of the policy directs that all government departments and state-owned enterprises will need to review the policies, strategies, legislation, regulations and plans falling within their jurisdictions to ensure full alignment with the NCCRP within two years of the publication of the policy. Molewa says that all government departments will start communicating with citizens about climate change to inform and educate them and to influence their behavioural choices. “This includes setting up and maintaining early warning systems for communities to take action in reducing risks.” The policy also acknowledges the need to mobilise financial, human and knowledge resources. “The government will use existing financial institutions and instruments and will also help to develop new ones,” Molewa says. She says this includes international financial assistance specifically for climate change response actions. Section 12 of the policy stipulates the development of a countrywide monitoring and evaluation system to measure climate variables at scales appropriate to various institutions that must implement climate change responses. “To monitor the success of responses to climate change and to replicate the ones that have worked well, we need to measure their cost,

outcome and impact,” she says. “South Africa will, within two years of the publication of the policy, design and publish a draft climate change response measurement and evaluation system.” Dr Mpandeli indicates that developing climate change adaptation plans for each sector will not be an easy task as most of the 12 sectors that the department approached will have to start from scratch. “They have no knowledge or research database to work from, and will have to invest in obtaining information to formulate the strategies.” Dr Mpandeli says another problem that will hamper developments in these sectors is the fact that some sectors are reluctant to share knowledge. “Technological and financial restraints will also become hurdles to jump over.” He says that the Department of Environmental Affairs has to support other departments in preventing climate change. “No one can tackle the problem alone, and it is our job to assist and support the rest of the country’s sectors in taking action.” Green economy gets a cash injection before COP17 The Industrial Development Corporate (IDC) and the German Development Bank (Kfw) launched a R500-million Green Energy-Efficiency Fund (GEEF) on 19 October. During the launch of the fund, the chief executive officer of the IDC, Geoffrey Qhena, said the goal of the fund is to encourage and promote investments in both energy-efficiency and renewable energy in South Africa. “Energy-efficiency should be a strategic priority for companies, particularly given the fact that South Africa is moving to higher, costreflective electricity pricing,” he says. He says with the fund IDC and KfW want to provide increased access to energy-efficiency and renewable energy financing across all industry sectors. “Setting up this fund with KfW is crucial for the country and a key addition to our portfolio of ring-fenced funds directed at a specific goal,” said Qhena. According to Qhena, the GEEF Take extra space out will focus on private sector companies registered and operating in South Africa and provides loans ranging from R1-million to R50-million at a concessionary rate of prime less 2%. “The GEEF allows for loan repayments of up to 15 years, depending on the energy-efficiency or renewable energy technology. Standard IDC fees, credit policies and procedures apply,” he explains. He added that investing in energy-efficiency ensures business competitiveness through the modernisation of industrial equipment and the use of energy-efficient technologies, resulting in reduced energy and other costs while increasing profitability. “Additional benefits include improved product quality, enhanced production capacity and improved company image due to carbon footprint reduction.” The GEEF will present opportunities to lower energy costs, improve profitability and invest in new technologies that facilitate South Africa’s transition towards a low carbon economy. “This in turn contributes to global climate protection, while supporting South Africa’s economic development and growth. Ultimately, greening South Africa’s industrial base will lead to long-term industrial competitiveness and job creation.” The fund supports the IDC’s alignment to the government’s key initiatives: the Industrial Policy Action Plan and the New Growth Path with a specific focus on growing the green economy. Full acknowledgement and thanks are given to the IDC, NBI and the Department of Environmental Affairs for the information given to write this article.

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climate change

Nissan launches

six-year environmental plan

In October, Nissan Motor Co. Ltd announced its new six-year environmental plan, Nissan Green Programme 2016, which will help the company to achieve its environmental philosophy: Symbiosis of People, Vehicle and Nature. Nissan’s president and chief executive officer, Carlos Ghosn, comments: “More consumers are demanding products in line with their values, including cars and trucks with a lower carbon footprint. At the same time, we are using technology to make our factories greener and more efficient. “Nissan wants to be part of the solution towards a sustainable society – for the sake of the planet and as a significant competitive advantage and a strategic differentiator in the global manufacturing sector,” explains Ghosn. Nissan Green Programme 2016 strategic objectives The Nissan Green Programme 2016 is the company’s third environmental mid-term plan and it focuses on three core areas: reduction of carbon footprint, shift to renewable energy and an increase in the diversity of resources used by Nissan. By the end of the fiscal year 2016, the plan is set to deliver the following: • Cumulative sales of 1,5-million zero-emission vehicles across the Renault-Nissan Alliance. On behalf of the Alliance, Nissan will lead the development of an all-new fuel-cell electric vehicle (FCEV) together with its strategic partner, Daimler.


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• A 35% fuel economy improvement compared with 2005 on a corporate average for all Nissan vehicles sold in Japan, China, Europe and the United States. • A 20% reduction per vehicle of CO2 emission of corporate activities compared with 2005. Nissan plans on achieving this through widening the scope of measureable objectives and introducing renewable energy sources for manufacturing and related facilities. • Raise the usage rate of recycled materials to 25%. New products In order to reach the goal of improving fuel economy by 35% compared to 2005, Nissan will be launching new fuel-efficiency products such as a new front-wheel drive hybrid model and a new plug-in hybrid model. The company will also be introducing a next-generation continuously variable transmission (CVT) and aims to reach 20-million units of cumulative CVT production since Nissan’s first launch in 1992. The Nissan Green Programme 2016 represents the pillar of sustainability in Nissan’s Blue Citizenship, the company’s strategic platform covering the area of corporate social responsibility. The announcement of the Nissan Green Programme 2016 is the first of many corporate initiatives under Blue Citizenship. For more information, visit, to which full thanks and acknowledgement are given.

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climate change

Assessing climate change threats and opportunities In the face of climate change vulnerability and risks, businesses and cities around the globe are becoming more focused on developing effective adaptation strategies. Increasing extreme weather events, decreased food security, an increase in water scarcity due to changed rainfall patterns and a rise in sea levels are just a few climate change impacts that compel corporations and communities to find sustainable ways to cope with these shifts. In order to respond proactively, both private and public sectors need to determine the climaterelated threats most pressing to their operations. These sectors need to be skilled at measuring and reporting on climate risk. Along with identifying threats, sectors and communities should be wise enough to look at opportunities, or positive effects that can be created from climate change, and capitalise upon it. Both threats and opportunities can be factored into decision-making or operational practices to ensure that resources are effectively allocated to enhance sustainability. Tools to help evaluate climate risk potential Climate risk mapping tools are being used extensively as a framework to assist businesses and cities in identifying and managing current and future climate change risks. These tools can be implemented in looking at various ways to strengthen infrastructure and physical assets, making it more resistant and durable. The tools can also be used to look at the evolution


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of regulations over time and identify if and how client emissions could be covered by a given regulation, and will also evaluate other effects from regulatory changes. This kind of tool conducts screening assessments, highlighting areas where climate change can create opportunities for a business or municipality, or impacts that might endanger the client’s survival.

Climate risk mapping tools are being used extensively as a framework to assist businesses and cities in identifying and managing current and future climate change risks. The types of “what-if scenarios” can include: • Finance and greenhouse gas emissions risk: Has your company assessed the financial impact of reducing its carbon footprint through purchasing carbon credits or other offsetting instruments? • Infrastructure vulnerability and physical risk: Has the company’s infrastructure or the municipality suffered damage as a result of severe

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storms or flooding in the past? How will these risks be mitigated in the future? • Markets and regulatory risk: Are your products and services subject to known or pending climate-related regulations that could have an impact on viability? Questions such as this hone in on the critical issues and lead not only to a comprehensive response report, but also to a business continuity management plan to develop organisation-wide or community resilience. This kind of planning should allow an organisation or city to survive the climate change impacts to partial or all of its operational capability, if a significant loss of resources occurs. Taking this approach as soon as possible could also bring about immediate savings, or prevent major costs when climatic changes become more pronounced. Impacts studied at South African municipalities Metropolitan municipalities such as eThekwini illustrate how climate change could have significant impacts on water supply and demand, as well as the risk of a coastal sea-level rise. Vulnerability analyses of several South African cities, including Durban, show that water shortages would not only severely affect city residents and industries, but also agriculture. This, in turn, will constrain the local food supply and the livelihoods of subsistence farming communities. A vulnerability assessment also reviewed urban infrastructure, including the capacity of pipes and channels to transmit stormwater during heavy downpours, and provisions for storing large volumes of water for later use. Recommendations included developing alternative access routes and improving flood attenuation by greening certain areas. The consequences can be far-ranging, since it was noted that maize, one of the staple food sources in the region, could be significantly less viable with just a two- or three-degree rise in the annual temperature. This research led to possible substitutes such as sorghum, and efforts to determine its feasibility as a crop and potential for social acceptance. A number of models were used to obtain a range of results for the Johannesburg municipality. Impacts, vulnerabilities and adaptation

Changing the way waste products are handled might lead to a smaller geographic footprint, particularly if several kinds of waste are disposed of in one place, leaving a more stable mass and less water to treat.

Sustainable mining development should include engaging residents of nearby affected communities to help them understand modern mining techniques. strategies were studied for economic and population growth, food security and agricultural production, air quality, infrastructure/ water resources, ecosystems and health. Cape Town produced an adaptation plan that will greatly assist in integrating climate change impacts in ongoing strategic planning and risk management activities. Their work will continue, this time focusing on a group of key sectors within the city, to determine how new technologies and other alternatives can help to ensure smarter implementation of the strategy. Safeguarding the operational performance of mines Adaptation is an important issue to consider when looking at mines and other large-scale infrastructure endeavours. Mining, transportation, manufacturing and oil and gas companies are interested in ensuring their facilities are resilient against the climate variations that are likely to occur within the design lifespan of their assets. With the possibility of more extreme rainfall events in South Africa, a tailings facility or stormwater control facility that will be able to handle increased precipitation can be planned in advance of its construction. To help achieving sustainability goals, better ways of disposal of mine waste such as tailings, slag and waste rock should be considered. Changing the way waste products are handled might lead to a smaller geographic footprint, particularly if several kinds of waste are disposed of in one place, leaving a more stable mass and less water to treat. Sustainable mining development should include engaging residents of nearby affected communities to help them understand modern mining techniques. The need to assess, mitigate or determine adaptive responses grows as the multitude of climate-induced risks and opportunities that will affect our economic and societal wellbeing in the 21st century increases. Golder Associates Tel: +27 31 717 2790 E-mail: Website: Vol 6 NR 6 2011

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Synergy for alternative energy The Indaba Hotel in Fourways, Johannesburg, was the venue for the 4th annual Natural Gas Conference, which was held during September and organised by the South African Pipeline Gas Association (SAPGA) under the theme Evolving Energy Source. The keynote speech was given by the Minister of Energy, Ms Dipuo Peters, who said that the conference slogan, Synergy for Alternative Energy, was well aligned with the intentions of the government and the Department of Energy in enabling natural gas to play a significant role in South Africa’s energy mix, and the department’s portfolio. Minister Peters said the department considers natural gas as an evolving energy source that requires synergies to be created among the various alternative energy carriers in the energy mix to best serve the energy needs of the people, but South Africa has very limited gas reserves. In this regard the department is eagerly awaiting the outcome of the assessment of the shale gas potential, which is currently estimated to be about 485-trillion cubic feet, by the USA Energy Information Administration, which is under investigation by the Department of Mineral Resources. “The national oil company PetroSA is also hard at work with exploration efforts to source gas for its gas-to-liquids facility in Mossel Bay. Apart from projects afoot to explore the potential of importing natural gas, we should not forget the contribution of the private entities that have invested heavily to explore our shores for both conventional and unconventional gas resources,” the minister said.

Minister Peters spoke briefly about the IRP 2010, which presents a 20-year view on South Africa’s energy commitments to reduce its dependence on coal and to reduce climate-changing emissions. She said: “Cabinet approval of the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP 2010) as well as the approval of the tabling in Parliament of the Independent System and Market Operator Bill on 17 March 2011, augurs well for the facilitation of participation of independents power producers in electricity generation in South Africa. “Under the approved IRP 2010, imported gas is expected to make up 6% of all new electricity generation, hydropower 6%, open-cycle gas turbines 9%, coal 15% and nuclear 23%,” she continued. “This translates into an envisaged electricity generation from gas of 15%, which is far from being an insignificant share if one considers our gas reserves, the total electricity demand and the current gas consumption – natural gas accounts for 3% of our primary energy consumption.” She said it should be noted that the IRP 2010 focuses on ensuring security of electricity supply, diversifying the mix away from coal and towards renewable sources, as well as nuclear energy. Thandiwe Maimane Chief director for communication and knowledge management E-mail: Tel: 012 444 4335 Cell: 082 450 8591 Fax: 086 615 6949

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House buying:

petrol price influences decisions

According to a recent poll conducted by ooba, one of South Africa’s leading bond originators, almost three quarters of South Africans consider the price of petrol as a factor before making a property purchasing decision. This was revealed when 68% of respondents stated that they consider rising fuel prices when choosing a home. Jenny Rushin, provincial sales manager at ooba, says petrol prices are definitely a consideration in households that are dependent on budgets. “The recent increase has resulted in the highest level recorded in three years and a double-digit price tag per litre.The increasing price of petrol is resulting in home owners choosing to live as close as possible to their places of work in order to reduce monthly expenses. Though improving, South Africa’s public transport systems are still relatively limited and many consumers still rely on personal transport.” She says that this trend has been highlighted in Gauteng by a growth in unit sales and property activity in the Centurion and Midrand areas, which are the midpoints between Johannesburg and Pretoria. “The current fuel price, coupled with the proposed tolling initiatives on the highways in and around Gauteng, will work out to be extremely expensive for motorists travelling these routes to and from work each day.”

Service excellence at DoE The South African Pipeline Gas Association (SAPGA) held its 4th annual Natural Gas Conference from 6-7 September. The keynote speaker was the Minister of Energy, Ms Dipuo Peters.

Exemption could ensure stability of liquid fuel supply to industry The Competition Commission of South Africa granted the petroleum and refinery industry an exemption on 10 October, following an application by the South African Petroleum Industry Association (SAPIA) in April 2010. The exemption enables participants in various stages of the supply chain to enter into the collaborative exchange of information necessary to ensure stability of supply and the efficient use of supply chain facilities. In the application SAPIA requested exemption until December 2015. After it was filed, exemption was granted on a short-term basis by the Competition Commission in 2010. The exemption covers a wide range of agreements and practices in the petroleum and refinery industry. It was applied for and granted in the midst of an ongoing investigation by the Competition Commission into the alleged anti-competitive conduct in relation to a range of products in the petroleum value chain. “The exemption will go a long way in ensuring the continuity and stability of liquid fuel supply to the various sectors and geographical locations of the South African economy,” says Avhapfani Tshifularo, the executive director of SAPIA. “We are pleased with the approval of the exemption. It has been almost 18 months since the exemption application was submitted and, as the process is long, frustrating and expensive, we would not like to start it over again.”

Thandiwe Maimane

On Friday 9 September, 25º in Africa sent an e-mail to Thandiwe Maimane, the chief director for communication and knowledge management at the Department of Energy, requesting information on the minister’s address. This was returned due to a faulty e-mail address on the same day, and re-sent to the correct e-mail address at 7:34am on Saturday 10 September, which resulted in a reply being received from Thandiwe at 8:30am that morning, providing all the required information. This is true service excellence that others would do well to copy!

As set out in the short-term exemption, granted during 2010 to accommodate the FIFA Soccer World Cup, the exemption does not extend to the wholesale, commercial and retail trade of liquid fuels supply, but rather to the arrangements to ensure logistics and bulk supply. “We look forward to the implementation of the exemption as it will enable the petroleum and refinery industry to ensure consistent delivery of much-needed liquid fuels to the South African industries,” concludes Tshifularo. Full acknowledgement and thanks are given to SAPIA for the information used in this article. Vol 6 NR 6 2011

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Unseemly scrabble for

Libya’s post- Gaddafi

oil assets underway Written by John Daly While NATO members, led by France, piously proclaimed at the onset of their military offensive in Libya that their concerns were solely humanitarian, a covert tussle to gain a commanding lead in developing the country’s energy riches in light of Colonel Gaddafi’s departure is well underway. The Libyan economy depends primarily upon revenues from the oil sector, which contribute about 95% of export earnings, 25% of the gross domestic product and 80% of government revenue. Prior to the outbreak of conflict, Libya was exporting about 1,3-1,4-million barrels per day from production estimated at roughly 1,79-million barrels per day, of which approximately 280 000 barrels per day were indigenously consumed. But analysts believe that with reconstruction Libya could soon be exporting 1,6-million barrels per day of high-quality, light crude.


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But current production is the proverbial mere drop in the bucket. Libya has the largest proven oil reserves in Africa with 42-billion barrels of oil and over 1,3-trillion cubic metres of natural gas. Causing oil company executives from Houston to Beijing to drool on their Gucci loafers, only 25% of Libya’s territory has been explored to date for hydrocarbons. Libya is already Europe’s single-largest oil supplier, the second-largest oil producer in Africa and the continent’s fourth-largest natural gas supplier and already dominates the Southern Mediterranean’s petroleum sector. According to the Libyan National Oil Corporation (NOC), more than 50 international oil companies are already present in the Libyan market. So, peering into Libya’s future, who’s actually ahead? Apparently it is France. On 3 April a letter was allegedly sent by Libya’s National Transitional Council (NTC) to a coalition partner, Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin


Khalifa Al Thani, which mentioned that France would take “35% of crude oil – in exchange for its total and permanent support” of the NTC. France’s Liberation daily reported on Thursday that it had a copy of the letter, which stated that the NTC’s Information Minister, Mahmoud Shammam, would negotiate the deal with France. In 2010 France was the second purchaser of Libyan oil after Italy, with over 15% of its “black gold” imported from Tripoli. Zut alors! The leader of the National Transitional Council, Moustapha Abdel Jalil, recently reported that the States would be rewarded “according to support” given to the insurgents. While NTC head Mustafa Abdel Jalil has not hidden the fact that the NTC would assign a higher priority for reconstruction and the allocation of oil contracts to countries that supported their uprising, remarking that nations would be rewarded “according to the support” given to the insurgents, the NTC’s UK representative, Guma al-Gamaty, said: “Future oil contracts would be granted on the basis of merit, not patronage. The contracts will be concluded in a transparent manner.” French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe solemnly denied any knowledge of a formal or specific deal during a radio interview, but brightly added that it would be logical for countries like France, which helped the NTC in its struggle against Gaddafi, to take part in reconstruction. French President Nicholas Sarkozy was the major European advocate for armed intervention in Libya and his administration was the first to officially recognize the NTC as “the sole, legitimate representative of the Libyan people” and the country’s sole governmental authority, as well as lobbying with other nations to recognize the NTC. Seeking a share of la gloire, France was also the first state to commence attacks against Gaddafi’s armed forces in Benghazi on 19 March, and along with fellow NATO member Britain have since provided the majority of the military equipment and personnel used during NATO’s operations in Libya. Going into grey areas of international law in its eagerness to oust Gaddafi, France also supplied some weaponry to opposition forces in Libya, a move that came under harsh criticism because of the total arms embargo imposed by the UN Security Council on arms deliveries to any side in the conflict. The NTC’s Paris-based envoy, Mansour Sayf al-Nasr, denied that such a letter had been sent or that any pledge had been given. But no one was backpedalling more furiously than Information Minister Shammam, who intoned that such an arrangement was unthinkable.

Oil and gas sector will drive African growth Ernst & Young’s recently released report, “Africa oil and gas: a continent on the move”, reflected that Africa’s economic output has doubled over the past decade, and six African economies were among the fastest-growing in the world for the 2001-2010 period. African economies generally proved resilient through the financial crisis, with the International Monetary Fund forecasting sub-Saharan growth rates of 5,5% in 2011 and 6% in 2012. This report confirms that resources generally, and oil and gas in particular, have played an important part in this growth. Nineteen African countries are significant producers of oil and gas, with significant new discoveries in Ghana, Tanzania, Mozambique and Uganda adding some new names to the established producers like Libya, Nigeria, Angola, Egypt, Algeria and Sudan. “Investors are seeing huge potential in African oil and gas sector,” says Elias Pungong, the African oil and gas sector leader at Ernst & Young. “There are some risks in Africa, we all know that, but the returns are commensurately high. And what’s particularly exciting, is the steady stream of new discoveries in countries like Uganda and Ghana, and prospected fields in others, including Mali, Sierra Leone and Kenya.” African oil supply, including crude oil, lease condensates, natural gas liquids and other liquids, has increased sharply over the past years, averaging just less than 11-million barrels per day in 2010. Conventional forecasts see this growth being maintained, albeit more slowly, over the next 25 years. Gas growth is predicted to be even stronger, with supply possibly set to double to about 15-trillion cubic feet (tcf) by 2035. 1

“It’s a joke. It’s false,” Shammam said.

“Less conventional estimates predict that the likely growth in the African oil and gas industry could be five times the current level, based on what remains unexplored in Africa versus currently known sub-soil assets,” Pungong adds. “Whatever view one takes, it’s clear that this is a sector with tremendous potential.”

Well, if you cannot believe an information minister, who can you trust? Is it sleazy journalists? It will certainly be interesting to see how the issue plays out in the days ahead, and if France does indeed get its 35% cut of the loot, which at present production rates would average about 500 000 barrels per day.

Ernst & Young, Cameroon Elias Pungong Mobile: +23 77 52 43 172 E-mail: Website:

Full acknowledgement and thanks are given to for the article. is a web based information hub that will keep you up to date on the latest news in the oil industry. Visit the website for specialised and specific information on relevant topics in the oil market.

Note 1: 25º in Africa will publish the full report from Ernst & Young in the next issue of the magazine. Watch this space!

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rene wab les

Assisting pupils to


High, Eastbank High, Kwabhekilanga Secondary, Leratong Joy for One Orphanage, Ekukhanyisweni, MC Weller Primary, Skeen Primary and Emfundisweni Primary.

A total of 500 pupils attending primary and secondary schools in Alexandra Township have been given the “power” to complete their homework and study after dark by office furniture and equipment supplier Ukhuni – thereby giving them the opportunity to “shine” at school. The pupils have each received a solar-powered desk lamp, sponsored by Ukhuni and several of its clients, as part of the Ukhuni “Help Them Shine” initiative. According to chief executive officer Margaret Taeli, the 18-year-old Wynberg-based company has a strong corporate social outreach culture, particularly in the neighbouring Alexandra Township and surrounds, as this is where many of its employees and their families live. “Help Them Shine” was born out of Ukhuni’s acceptance of several factors impacting life in Alexandra: the fact that many schools have access to electricity to facilitate education but most homes are not electrified, electricity prices are rising sharply and may soon force those who are electrified to cut consumption – this also precludes those currently too poor to pay for electricity from being able to afford it in the future, Eskom cannot guarantee supply and predicts wide blackouts for 2012, candles and paraffin lamps are a major cause of fires in the townships. “The awareness around World Environment Day as well as the growing acceptance of solar energy as an alternative energy source prompted us to think out of the box when we realised the pupils’ dire need for light after dark,” said Taeli. “We sought a sustainable solution for their problem, and were delighted when our investigations hit upon the solar desk lamp. During daylight hours when it is not needed, the lamp – or, more strictly speaking, its little black solar panel – recharges. It then slips back into the unit and provides up to four hours of light before needing to be recharged by the sun’s energy again. “Over the lamp’s lifetime, it will provide 50 000 hours of light. That’s 2 083 days, well over five years of light to study with. We thank our clients for being so generous and helping us to give these children a chance to shine,” she said. The pupils benefitting from the initiative were identified by Ukhuni with the assistance of Alex FM. The schools they attend include Alex High, Realogile


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Client co-sponsors are Abel Walling, ATNS, Beau Decor, Blue Zebra, Brand Gurus, Corporate Connections, Design Zone, Disegno Designs, Facets Interiors, Fit, FNB, Infinitude, Lovejobs, Nedbank Workspace Planning, Not Ordinary Design, On Target Interiors, Paper Space Designs, Plan A1, PH Designs, Saheti School, SL Designs, Telesure, Turnkey Interiors, Versus Paint and Weavers World. “The cost of the solar desk lamps is R150 each, a great deal of money for many Alexandra residents,” said Alex FM’s Virginia Mapotse. “However, thanks to Ukhuni’s vision and the generosity of its clients, a host of children now has precious light so that they can study well after the sun has gone down. Not only will this assist them to shine at school, it affords them the opportunity for a better adulthood,” she said. Spokespeople from the schools agreed. “Many of the students don’t have electricity at home – the ones who do have electricity have regular power outages, so this campaign is wonderful for the children. They can now study at night and do their homework, no more excuses!” was the response from Kwabhekilanga Secondary. Alex High added: “This campaign means so much to the teachers and children as the children are often in very difficult situations – there’s no electricity and they often share the shack they live in with ten other people. With them having their own lamp, they can now study and do their homework, which we as teachers will be very happy about.” There was more good news at the handover of the lamps in Alexandra. Taeli announced that bringing light to Alexandra was just the first of the “Help Them Shine” campaigns. “This year, Ukhuni Hope begins with light but, now that the channels are open between the schools in Alexandra and Ukhuni, we have a direct link to their everyday needs, so next year we may be providing very different items to pupils from these schools. “Further, our ‘Help Them Shine’ mission is to monitor pupils from the very poorest of homes and orphanages in order to assist them with the ability to study further with bursaries and the like. It is an ambitious project, given the sheer size of the need – but we know that by taking our lead from Nelson Mandela, who said: ‘Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world’, and partnering with like-minded clients, we will make a difference.” Ukhuni is also actively involved in neighbouring Alexandra Township and

renewa b les

surrounds with various initiatives through its corporative social outreach initiative, called Ukhuni Hope. This includes the adoption of the Sithandiwe Centre for Disabled Children and Adults, which provides refuge for the disabled in the community, the Alex FM radio station, which provides an invaluable service giving residents a forum to air their needs and concerns, and Balfour Soccer Development, who is providing a safe and secure environment for the training and development of young soccer players. Ukhuni is also aligned with Food & Trees for Africa and purchased 111 trees, which it invited clients, suppliers and staff to plant in order to share the

benefit of greening, beautification and climate change action. The recipients were all in the Alexandra area and consisted of four schools and a clinic. The 111 trees will sequestrate 41,57 tonnes of carbon dioxide over the next 15 years, which negates the emissions generated by Ukhuni’s fleet of vehicles. Ukhuni Business Furniture Tel: +27 11 887 9243 E-mail: Website:

Dramatically cutting energy consumption in KZN The Sustainable Energy Society of Southern Africa (SESSA) announced recently that member Hudu has begun work on a photovoltaic installation that will dramatically cut the energy consumption of an office park in KwaZulu-Natal, and which comprises the largest photovoltaic installation to an office building to date in the province. As a result, this project, which comprises some 234 panels, will be featured at the 17th United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP17) taking place in Durban later this year. Located on Umhlanga Ridge, Lincoln on the Lake is managed by South Africa’s biggest JSE-listed property company, Growthpoint Properties Limited. It is anticipated that the installation will generate 44 kW peak power and cut Lincoln on the Lake’s annual consumption by 87 000 kWh a year. This will achieve a minimum annual carbon saving of 89 610kg CO2 and an annual certified emissions reduction of 89,61 tCO2. Other partners in this trail-blazing clean energy initiative are Suntech, which together with Hudu is providing the design and installation expertise, and Eskom, which is contributing to the cost of the installation as part of its joint venture scheme for commercial building photovoltaic installations. According to the head of Growthpoint Properties’ utilities management division, Essop Basha, energy-efficient initiatives and alternative energy sources for commercial properties are without doubt the way of the future. “Those active in the South African property sector are just beginning to explore the benefits of sustainable and efficient energies, and they can be harnessed effectively,” he said. “However, having a local project to showcase at COP17 will convince delegates from all over the world of the sector’s commitment to save energy, as well as demonstrate South African business’ forward-thinking approach to the utilisation of clean energy sources. “Monitoring of the Lincoln on the Lake Rooftop Solar Project will be ongoing, as the goal of the pilot project is to evaluate the technology and the potential opportunity it represents for application in buildings in South Africa. The project will benefit not only the pilot study partners, but the whole country,” he said.

Hudu’s participation in the project was driven by its objective to provide products that are both sustainable and in harmony with the environment. The company prizes innovation above all and specialises in the supply, design, installation and maintenance of custom-built, hybrid on- and off-grid solar power plants for domestic, commercial and industrial applications. “The project was conceived by a common interest and desire for clean energy, in addition to saving energy and reducing demand on the national energy grid,” said the managing director of Hudu, Martin Viljoen. “The latest innovations in the solar energy sector provide increased applications and effectiveness, as well as financial viability. We are excited to be part of this resourceful project and to be a participant in the solar energy revolution that is taking place in South Africa.” Eskom’s divisional executive overseeing their preparations for COP17, Dr Steve Lennon, added: “Eskom is committed to developing large-scale renewable energy projects as well as support to our customers in the development of smaller-scale projects, as with Lincoln on the Lake. The investment is part of the 49m campaign, which encourages the responsible use of electricity by all South Africans.” SESSA’s ambassador, Irvan Damon, said he is certain the pilot project would prove successful, and be the catalyst for numerous similar installations nationwide. “The promulgation of the new energy-efficiency building ‘code’, SANS 10400-XA, earlier this year effectively commits the owners of all future buildings – be they houses, flats, hospitals, hotels, office blocks, shopping malls, factories and so on – to invest in sustainable or energy-efficient technologies when it comes to the provision of hot water. “The Lincoln on the Lake project, however, will provide the owners of existing buildings with a reason to examine their own energy usage and see the savings that can be achieved by retrofitting. It could herald a new wave of investment in sustainable and efficient energy systems for the benefit of our industry and our planet,” he said. SESSA Tel: +27 11 789 1384 Fax: +27 11 789 1385 Website:

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rene wab les

Enabling small-scale renewable energy projects in Africa Across Africa, countries are struggling to meet the increasing demand for electricity in energy sectors characterised by severe supply constraints. Uganda is no different in this respect. Despite its flagship 250MW Bujagali hydropower plant getting geared to produce power in early 2012, experts are already looking to cope with a post-Bujagali period of similar supply-side pressures. Uganda’s high profile 600MW Karuma hydropower plant that will also be constructed to boost their energy capacity is not expected to be operational until 2018/19. This is why small renewable power projects in Africa should play an important role to increase access to energy and encouraging local investment. Camco, a leading international clean-energy advisory firm, carried out a project funded by Germany’s KfW Entwicklungsbank, which joined hands with the Uganda Energy Credit Capitalisation Company (UECCC), to foster private investment in small renewable energy (RE) projects in Uganda. The project shed light on the conflicting requirements of local RE project developers and sources of available capital. In virtually all cases, the problem was not a lack of capital, but rather the timing of its application. Small RE projects, attempted by local developers, often stall or fail at prefeasibility stage. In contrast, investors, predominantly venture capital or private equity investors, are constantly looking to take advantage of the lucrative, “first mover” RE return profiles, but will only invest on the back of a “bankable” feasibility study done by a reputable engineering firm. This creates an unbridgeable gap between RE projects’ need for the financial assistance necessary to move to feasibility stage, and frustrated RE investors finding little or no projects at this bankable stage. The project in Uganda carried out by Camco highlighted these early stage obstacles preventing projects from moving to the point where they could attract meaningful financing. These projects face obstacles like: • A lack of technical skills in developing pre-feasibility studies, as well as business and marketing plans. • A lack of capacity in the banking community related to project finance (particularly the mismatch between short-dated loan tenor typical of banks and the long-term lending requirements for power sector projects). • A lack of transparency in the permitting process.

Innovative financial mechanisms The project showcased that bridging the financing gap required innovative financial mechanisms focused on making financing available in the prefeasibility stage of the project development cycle. One should also keep in mind that finance alone is not enough, unless it is linked to technical assistance. As a result, an early stage transaction advisory framework was developed, enabling projects to obtain assistance on the whole range of prefeasibility activities necessary to get to a feasibility or bankable stage. Other financial instruments include mezzanine financing (subordinated debt used to satisfy bank leverage requirements for equity) and liquidity guarantees for payment by the utility purchasing the power. Determining the RE tariff is also of paramount importance in this process. The absence of a workable renewable energy feed-in tariff (REFIT) and associated power purchase agreement (PPA), or other type of enabling mechanism, was another key issue identified at the outset of the study. In the case of Uganda, the development and implementation of the REFIT at the beginning of 2011 has the potential to overcome this obstacle, although to date it has experienced some growing pains. Since the implementation of the REFIT, the hydro tariff has been seen as too low, with a consequent dampening effect on small hydro project development. This was balanced by the planned annual tariff review aimed at fine-tuning tariff levels, which should resolve this problem. In order to enable such projects to be developed, there needs to be a co-ordinated effort that brings together the necessary legislative and policy framework, appropriate and innovative commercial finance structures, and access to international funds, for example the Green Climate Fund. This can be the difference between a project moving forward and failing in that critical, early stage. Finance for projects

Standardisation for a portfolio of projects

It is easy to blame an enduring lack of finance for most problems in Africa. In the case of small-scale RE development in Uganda and many other African countries, the problem is not just the lack of finance, but rather the application of available finance where it is needed in the project development cycle. Bankability should not be the only key factor to be considered as the post-feasibility study/financial closure point at which international funds can be applied. Without early financial assistance, there are few, if any, truly bankable projects. Instead, international finance should also play an earlier role in getting projects to the point of bankability. This will go a long way to enable small RE projects to play a part in powering sustainable growth and development in Africa.

A related issue to this is standardisation. This is the notion that if a sizeable investment is not possible, then a portfolio approach is necessary whereby five to ten projects having roughly similar parameters are assembled which together can handle a venture-capital size investment. This approach is

Camco South Africa Tel: +27 11 253 3400 E-mail: Website:

From the investor’s viewpoint, a key constraint is the size of the project, given the minimum investment typical of venture capital of approximately US$25-million. Only a small percentage of these micro-scale projects require such a large investment.


problematic because a standardised portfolio simply does not exist. Every project is unique with differentiated requirements.

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Helping to harness

solar energy The insulation used for the Gobi line of solar flatplate collectors by Heliodyne of Richmond, California – which is one of the oldest and largest manufacturers of solar collectors in the US – is provided by BASF’s Basotect melamine foam. The Gobi line is Heliodyne’s flagship product that has continuously been refined and developed for over 30 years. Heliodyne chose insulating Basotect parts, custom-cut by the thermal and acoustic composite manufacturer Polymer Technologies of Newark, Delaware, over other foam materials as the insulation to line the back and the sides of their collectors. The BASF foam shows excellent insulation capabilities as well as long-term, high temperature resistance. Highly efficient and thermally stable insulation Flat-plate solar collectors use solar energy to produce hot water for residential and commercial buildings. Water or heat-transfer fluid is heated as it passes through panels that are designed to collect heat from the sun. One essential aspect of the collector design is the thermal insulation that is used to retain the heat in the collector. Solar collectors that are stagnant, meaning that the liquid is not flowing through the collector, can reach temperatures that exceed 180ºC. Unlike other polymeric foam-insulating materials that usually start to degrade at considerably lower temperatures, Basotect can withstand these temperatures. “The new Gobi line of collectors has the thinnest profile available in the US. This improves the aesthetics of the collectors and makes them easier to transport and install,” explains Ole Pilgaard, president and chief executive officer of Heliodyne. “With the smaller profile, though, we only had room for a very efficient and thermally stable layer of insulation. By using Basotect, we not only maintained the product line’s efficiency, but we actually also improved the overall performance of the collector.” Lightweight, flexible and free of fibres In addition, Basotect provides other benefits for Heliodyne’s solar collectors. Because the foam is lightweight, flexible and free of fibres, it is easier to store and assemble than other insulation materials.

While other materials may off-gas at higher temperatures, Basotect releases practically no substances that could fog the gas and block solar radiation. The BASF material can also be easily shaped. Polymer Technologies is able to manufacture parts that are customised to fit perfectly during assembly. Heliodyne uses Basotect on three different sized flat-plate collectors so that the optimal design can be found for both residential and commercial customers. The panels were tested and certified by the Solar Ratings and Certification Corporation (SRCC). Versatile Thanks to its favourable combination of various properties – temperature resistant and flame retardant, lightweight, elastic, sound absorbent and heat insulating – Basotect is also suitable for the acoustic and thermal insulation of buildings, vehicles and trains. There are now a number of different thermoset foam grades for various applications available. For additional information, visit the website BASF Holdings South Africa (Pty) Ltd Tel: +27 11 203 2422 Fax: +27 11 203 2430 E-mail: Website:

JOKE There are never any blond jokes in 25º, but we couldn’t resist this one! Last year I installed solar panels for my geyser, these energy-efficient kinds. Today I got a call from the contractor who complained that the work had been completed a year ago and I still hadn’t paid for it. “Hellooo . . .” I said. “Just because I’m blonde doesn’t automatically mean that I’m stupid.” So, I told him just what his fast-talking sales guy had told me last year... that these panels would pay for themselves within 12 months. “Hellooo? It’s been a year, so they’re paid for,” I told him. There was only silence on the other end, so I finally hung up. He never called back. I bet he felt like an idiot!

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Green b uildin g

Building industry to paint the town


Written by Nichelle Lemmer

Green fever hit South Africa hard this year, with terms like the green economy, green energy and green technology that are on the lips of industry leaders. With South Africa hosting the UNFCCC’s 17th climate change discussions (COP 17) in Durban at the end of the year, industries gear up to spread their green wings. The green fever spilled over in various sectors of society, including the building industry. 25º in Africa looks at some fundamental principles to be incorporated in the building industry, helping South Africa’s building professionals to change colours. What is a green building? According to the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA), a green building is a building that is energy-efficient, resource-efficient and environmentally responsible. It incorporates design, construction and operational practices that significantly reduce or eliminate its negative impact on the environment and its occupants. Refer to the GBCSA website for more detail on how they define a green building: Defining green standards The term “green” is subjective and carries differing weight in industry, dependent on who one discusses this with – so how can buildings be benchmarked or what is the standard for green buildings? The GBCSA defined green standards in the building industry by introducing the Green Star SA rating system and certification process. “A building that received Green Star SA certification, will have been required to undergo the independent third-party assessment managed by the GBCSA,” says Jarrod Lewin, of the GBCSA. “The Green Star SA certification requires the project team implement various environmentally sustainable design initiatives into their project. These initiatives are then ‘scored’ against preset performance criteria within the Green Star SA rating tools under various categories including management, energy, indoor environmental quality, water, transport, emissions, materials, land use & ecology and innovation, which after third party assessment are totaled to give the team a final score to achieve either a 4, 5 or 6 star rating.” The detailed Green Star SA certification process can be found on the GBCSA’s website, as well as the freely available rating tool in excel format.


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Green b u i ldin g

Lewin says more than just design influences need to be considered when a project team is aspiring toward a Green Star SA certification. “The rating system encourages the building industry to take a holistic integrated design approach to the building - a systems approach – how one element of design impacts a number of other elements often under the control of different design professionals.” He explains that these factors include looking at building management, indoor environmental quality, energy usage, transport, water usage, land use and the effect it has on the immediate and surrounding eco-systems. “Designers, contractors and occupants need to remember that buildings form part of a bigger environmental system and its impact stretches beyond the building site.”

More than just a movement

A national perspective The green movement in the building industry is spreading like wildfire and in the space of a few months, the GBCSA certified six new green buildings. This brings the total number of Green Star SA certifications in South Africa to twelve, with two of these having achieved both Office Design and Office As-Built ratings. The month of August also saw the awarding of the first ever 5-star Green Star SA Office Design v1 rating in South Africa. Though what is perhaps even more an indication of the momentum gained in the green building industry is the awarding of South Africa’s first 6-star Green Star SA Office Design v1 rating – awarded to the Vodafone Site Solution Jarrod Lewin, of the GBCSA. Innovation Centre in Midrand just last week. That same week saw the GBCSA also award its first Multi Unit Residential PILOT Design rating, to the Amdec development, 40-on-Oak, at Melrose Arch. It a achieved a 4-star Green Star SA rating. Other buildings which achieved Green Star SA ratings recently are: Aurecon’s Tshwane offices in the Lynnwood Bridge Office Park, 24 Richefond Circle (As Built), situated in the Ridgeside Office Park in Umhlanga, Mayfair on the Lake, also in Umhlanga and the Nedbank Menlyn Maine Falcon Building in Pretoria. “These innovative buildings set the standard for commercial green buildings and there are many more in the pipeline which have submitted applications for certification,” says Brian Wilkinson, chief executive officer of the GBCSA. “A year ago the GBCSA had issued only one official Green Star SA rating, as opposed to the current figure of twelve.” According to him, South Africa has reached a tipping point whereby it has become a necessity to develop green commercial buildings. “It is a significant task for developers to put together a submission and the fact that we are seeing such an increase in certified buildings as well as so many submissions coming in, shows that the local property industry is embracing global best practices in green building and following in the footsteps of international trends,” says Wilkinson.

Brian Wilkinson, chief executive officer of the GBCSA.

The new green building regulations, which are effective from November 2011, will also set a new bar in standards that will push the building industry to become more environmentally-friendly. According to the Sustainable Energy Society of Southern Africa (SESSA), this requires that at least 50% of the annual average hot water requirements of all new buildings must be met by sustainable or energy-efficient technologies as opposed to electrical resistanceheating technology.

SANS 10400-XA, Energy Usage, as the new standard is known, will be implemented in tandem with the revised SANS 204 National Building Regulations. According to SESSA, SANS 10400-XA will pave the way for the country to move towards a greener future. Irvan Damon, the ambassador of SESSA, says that up until now the deployment of sustainable or energy-efficient technologies to provide hot water to domestic, commercial and industrial buildings has been driven mainly by environmentalists, as the country’s relatively cheap electricity charges have made the utilisation of carbon-based energy sources highly cost-effective. “SANS 10400-XA effectively commits the owners of all future buildings to invest in sustainable or energy-efficient technologies when it comes to the provision of hot water,” says Damon. He says that once the lead-in time of six months for the industry and regulators within local authorities to prepare for the legislation has expired, it will be enforced. “This effectively gives South Africans until mid-2012 to familiarise themselves with the standards, and ensure they comply. “Given that, in the global context, energy consumption in buildings accounts for Irvan Damon, the ambassador about 50% of the total carbon footprint, of SESSA. and that South Africa generates most of its power from coal, ranking it as one of the top 15 global polluters, creating more energy-efficient spaces for work, play and home is a key intervention to addressing climate change,” he says. “Constructing energy-inefficient buildings will soon become a thing of the past as the requirements in SANS 10400-XA will be slowly raised over a period of several years to ensure our low carbon culture future.” Full acknowledgement and thanks are given to SESSA and the GBCSA for the information given to write this article.

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b io-ener g y

Opportunities in

could be used to help boost algae production for both biofuel production and the production of food supplements based on the antioxidant nutrients found in algae. His research is expected to appear in the peerreview journal Bioelectromagnetics later this year.


Wan is not the first person to observe get these results. Researchers have been exploring the effects of both magnetism and low-level frequencies on simple-cell organisms such as algae and bacteria for a few years now, and in most cases they have observed growth stimulation.

Research on the development of algae as feedstock for biofuel seemed far-fetched decades ago. Today, the concept is more than just a stretch of our imagination. The constant search by the science community to find solutions for climate change is just one of the reasons for research done into algae as a viable feedstock. The shortage of petroleum and the expansion of biofuels into the energy market also fuel scientists to take a closer look.

According to the website, algae are one of the most promising choices of feedstock to produce biofuel. Algae grow 50 to 100 times faster than conventional food crops. Energy experts say biofuels produced from algae have the potential to become one of the best alternative energy solutions that could be capable enough to replace currently dominant fossil fuels.

Producing biofuel from algae could create real advantages for the production of renewable fuel in the airline industry. This industry can’t electrify its fleet, like electricity as an energy source that brings promise to the motor industry.

Algae are single-cell organisms and do not require freshwater resources or soil for growth. It can grow in aqueous suspension in many nonpotable and saline water sources. By growing algae in areas that are not suitable for food-crop production, more land and water can be made available for growing food rather than growing biofuel feedstock.


New research results Research led by biochemistry professor Dr Wankei Wan at the University of Western Ontario focused on the effect of low-level magnetic fields on algae growth. The results of the study seem promising for biofuel production, as the biomass of the algae used in the study quadrupled with the right exposure to magnetic fields. This also increased the amount of the oil inside the algae. The team first created a tabletop algae pond in their lab. Then they carefully monitored the growth of the Chlorella Kessleri algae under specific light and temperature conditions. After this they then replicated the set-up, but now they circulated the algae in the pond through an area that was exposed to low-level static magnetic fields. An electromagnet was used in this experiment to create the magnetic field. The algae thrived under the level and length of the exposure to magnetic fields. Wan’s team found that on a level of optimum exposure the algae quadrupled in biomass, and the amount of oil inside the algae and in-cell antioxidants, such as Astaxanthin, increased. Wan believes the approach

Although research into algae as a viable feedstock for biofuel was on the back burner for several years, the global plight to reduce greenhouse gasses again motivated scientists to explore a new the potential of algae as a feedstock. The Engines and Energy Conversion Laboratory (EECL) at Colorado State University is one of the institutions that mainly focus on biofuel production from algae. They are looking at ways to deliver scalable, costeffective technology to produce biofuels from algae. One of the main players in this sector is Solix Biofuels, a company that has refined multiple generations of the Algal Growth System (AGS) technology now operating at the Coyote Gulch Demonstration Facility in southwestern Colorado. The company aims to enable the large-scale commercialisation of micro-algae based fuels and co-products. Algae can be cultivated in two ways: in an open-pond system, either naturally occurring or engineered, or in an engineered closed system. Without controlled conditions, it can be difficult to sustain desired species of algae or grow them at optimal rates for biomass or fuel production. This is the reason why Solix Biofuels mainly develops closed-growth systems. Closed-growth systems have several advantages – not only do they support the cultivation of specific target cultures, but a closed-growth system can feed CO2 from industrial processes directly to the algae at high concentrations, which maximizes the amount of captured CO2. The first closed-system prototype of AGS was made in 2006. Since then period Solix Biofuels has continued to refine its technology and significantly expanded its area under algae cultivation. Algae-based biofuel has the potential to revolutionize the energy industry and play a leading role in the fight against greenhouse gas emissions. To make a real difference in the market, more research must be done. Biofuel production from algae definitely deserves more attention in the years to come.


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b io -energ y

Plant oil beneficiation in rural Limpopo The Nkowankowa Demonstration Centre, a plant oils and extracts facility, recently launched in Tzaneen Limpopo. The centre resulted from a partnership between the Department of Science and Technology (DST) and Sasol ChemCity Limpopo in an effort to create sustainable livelihoods in the area. This centre will run a R13,9-million development project over the next three years, extracting various fruit and plant oils with a view to establish their viability in the cosmetics sector. Funded by the DST, the establishment of the facility is in line with the department’s objective to apply innovative technology using local natural resources to create sustainable employment in areas of need. For greater Tzaneen, agriculture is the most important economic sector – with fruit such as marula, oranges, grapefruit, mangoes, avocadoes and bananas produced on a small scale and commercially.

Sector Budget Support programme, is involved in a number of similar developmental projects across the country. “We hope that the project’s outcomes will encourage young people to pursue careers in mathematics and science, which are South Africa’s ultimate weapon in the war against poverty, and which will allow our country to develop its economy and thrive in this competitive world.”

As the implementing partner, Sasol ChemCity brings expertise in cosmetic formulations and entrepreneurial development. The project has so far seen the selection of at least 33 potential entrepreneurs and the direct employment of 13 people. The most important benefit brought by the facility is the incubation of small businesses that use new health, beauty and nutritional products from the facility. Other partners who are bringing expertise to the table are the Council for Industrial and Scientific Research and the Vaal University of Technology. Speaking at the launch, the Minister of Science & Technology, Naledi Pandor, said the DST, with funding from the European Union’s

Sasol ChemCity will collaborate with universities to conduct continuous research, by-product beneficiation and natural oil use in cosmetic products. The on-site laboratory will perform immediate testing for yield enhancement and specification parameters. In time to come, the centre will act as a “thinktank” for product testing and business incubation. Bridgitte Backman, Sasol ChemCity’s managing director, says: “Working in rural Africa gives Sasol ChemCity an exciting opportunity to encourage an entrepreneurial spirit and foster positive change in a community that is hungry to learn. This project is close to our hearts because of its dynamic ability to develop in so many crucial areas, and provide a sustainable solution for the people of Tzaneen. Our team of experts were individually selected for their various skills in business incubation and we are confident that they will succeed in both incubating and educating.”

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Future prospects for the South African

carbon market Andrew Gilder, director at IMBEWU Sustainability Legal Specialists Lodewijk Nell, Director Consultancy at EcoMetrix Africa Brett Jordaan, Vice President Evolution Markets (with responsibility for Africa)

Carbon investment from the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) has opened the door to flows of foreign investment and ongoing sustainable development initiatives in South Africa. There are currently 19 registered CDM projects in South Africa – and over 100 waiting for registration and approval – that earn Certified Emissions Reductions (CERS - a type of “carbon credit” that developed countries use to comply with part of their emission reduction targets under the Kyoto Protocol). While the South African carbon market has, to date, benefited from the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS), which is the biggest buyer of carbon credits generated in this country, future South African CDM investment is current in question.

CERs. Essentially, South Africa stands the chance to lose out on millions of rands worth of revenues potentially to be derived from CDM projects. How Africa will be affected The criteria for a country to be listed as an LDC by the UN Economic and Social Council are assessed every three years. With regard to the African continent, less than 25% of the GDP is covered by LDCs. Of the 172 African CDM project activities are either registered or in the pipeline for validation/registration, only 16 are located in LDCs and only one of them has issued CERs.

The problem is that the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol – during which developed countries must seek to comply with their Kyoto obligations and which, consequently, creates a market for South African carbon– ends at the end of 2012. The first Kyoto period is congruent with the second phase of the EU ETS and emitting installations in the EU ETS are entitled to use Kyoto carbon credits, like CERs, to comply with part of their EU emissions reduction obligation – hence the EU ETS’s strong purchasing interest in South African carbon. However, while the third phase of the EU ETS will be running from 2013 to 2020, the EU has indicated that it will favour the group of least developed countries (LDCs) for purchases of carbon offsets during this period. South Africa is generally considered to be a so-called advanced developing country and is not an LDC. Where does the current EU position leave the South African carbon market? South Africa is “ineligible” according to new LDC criteria The EU’s current position is that the carbon credits generated by greenhouse gas emissions reducing projects in non-LDCs and registered under the Kyoto System after 2012 will be ineligible for use in the third phase of the EU ETS. South Africa is particularly mentioned by the EU as a country to which this restriction will apply, which will have grave consequences for the liquidity and size of the market as well as the value of the South African-originated


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This map shows LDCs in African and Asian countries. CREDIT: Wikipedia

CDM country eligibility could be a bargaining tool at COP17 negotiations The EU’s policy position favouring LDCs as the location for CER purchases in the post-2012 period occurs within the context of the notoriously variable international climate change negotiations, the next round of which will be


South Africa is the continental CDM leader

The South African carbon market is already experiencing serious knock-on effects of the EU’s position and CDM project developers are currently facing a triple dilemma.

held in Durban in November 2011. For this reason there is some concern that countries will use the CDM country eligibility issue as a bargaining tool in the climate negotiations. The South African carbon market is already experiencing serious knock-on effects of the EU’s position and CDM project developers are currently facing a triple dilemma. Developers can rush forward with the hopes of getting their projects registered before 31 December 2012 (this factor is causing a huge bottleneck of work within the various professional service providers involved in this arena). Alternatively, developers can have faith in the robustness of the post-2012 carbon and proceed with project registration at a more considered pace at which, in context of a process that is already fraught with difficulty, errors are likely to arise. Without clarity on the EU ETS eligibility of South African CERs in the EU ETS in the post-2012 period this route has a number of commercial and operational risks. The most likely, but least beneficial alternative, is to forego project development altogether. This route means that South Africa won’t benefit from the flows of foreign capital or sustainable development that might have been accrued via the implementation of CDM projects from host countries. Should South Africa move to sectorial emission reductions? A notion advanced by the EU is that advanced developing countries, such as South Africa, should move to sectorial emission reductions rather than continuing on the path of project-based emissions reductions – such as the CDM. While there is some merit in this notion, it ignores the fact that a move towards sectorial emissions reductions will, of necessity, occur at the snail’s pace of the ongoing climate change negotiations and it is unlikely that the Durban meeting will pay much attention to the issue of sectorial targets or how and when these may be achieved. The point is that a shift to sectoral emissions reductions in advanced developing countries is currently only a proposal within the overarching negotiation framework and achieving this shift is (at least) years away. In the absence of the CDM, or of relevant domestic regulation, there would be no market-based incentive for the South African public and private sectors to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.

The past two years have been witness to a strongly increasing trend in the number of new CDM projects being developed in Sub-Saharan Africa, and South Africa in particular. Among the reasons for this trend are the CDM successes that have occurred (both in Africa and on other continents), which have proven the viability of the mechanism and deepened appreciation of the potential benefits of project implementation. South Africa has benefited more than any other African nation from carbon investment facilitated by the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism with 19 CDM projects (at the date of publishing) being registered in the country. According to the UNFCCC, there are also over 100 projects in the pipeline that are striving for registration before the end of 2012.

Defending South Africa’s carbon market It is vital that South Africa, along with other non-LDCs, responds firmly to the EU’s position on the carbon market. South Africa needs to defend its nascent carbon market in the international arena and take action to nurture and grow the market. Such defensive actions may include: • Firmly responding to the EU’s position on non-LDCs in the post-2012 carbon market and confirming the importance of LDC contribution to the future health of the carbon market as a whole. • Engaging with the EU and other players, such as Australia, on the potential offered by concluding bilateral agreements that would ensure the eligibility of South African carbon in these markets. • Engaging with private sector carbon market players in order to inform the government’s position with the information/expertise present in this sector. • Participating in initiatives intended to support future development of the market, e.g. the World Bank Partnership for Market Readiness. IMBEWU Sustainability Legal Specialists ( is a specialist sustainability legal consultancy providing professional legal consultancy services in the area of environmental, health and safety and climate change law. IMBEWU runs a Climate Change and CDM Specialist Consultancy Unit with the greatest depth of expertise and experience in the South African carbon market. IMBEWU collaborates with Warburton Attorneys (www. in providing CDM project development and contract advice to clients. This article should not be regarded as a comprehensive discussion of the topics addressed, and should not be taken as legal advice or relied upon. Those seeking to participate in climate change-related activities are advised to seek specific legal advice. Contact: IMBEWU Sustainability Legal Specialists Tel: +27 11 214 0660 Fax: +27 880 6577 E-mail: Website:

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of poor communities

a universal goal Written by Nichelle Lemmer In the future, Africa could be lit up by the lights of millions of households that will all have access to some form of electricity. Veerle Vandeweerd, the director of the environment and energy group at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), is convinced that this is a reachable goal. She talked about her vision for Africa and other developing countries at a UNDP media conference that was held recently in Johannesburg. According to Vandeweerd, addressing climate change can offer an opportunity to provide access to energy to 2-billion poor people in the world, of which 580-million is in Africa. “This can only happen if climate finance architecture and responses are designed to fully ensure the equal distribution of resources and if clean energy is utilized efficiently.”

She explains that this is only viable if clean-energy investments and funds are distributed equally between developing and developed countries. “At the moment about 90% of the clean-energy investments go to G20 countries, and only 10% go to others, a situation that cannot be accepted.” She adds that this is why global negotiations at COP 17 on the Green Climate Fund should deliver an instrument that can drive equity both across and within all countries. “At the same time massive efforts to equip developing countries, especially in Africa, with knowledge, resources and the capacity to take full advantage of these instruments have to be in place.”

addressing climate change can offer an opportunity to provide access to energy to 2-billion poor people in the world, of which 580-million is in Africa. Era of transformation Vandeweerd says a transformation of economies is inevitable to stay well below the 2ºC temperature rise by 2050. “This transformation should not bypass the energy needs of the poor in Africa,” she adds. According to her, national climate and renewable energy policies can be designed to include an energy access action plan to commit to this strategy. “Access to energy is fundamental to respond to climate challenge, achieve human development and accelerate progress in the achievement of the millennium development goals (MDG).” She says the proposed United Nations 2030 Sustainable Energy for All Initative’s energy goals of universal energy access, the 40% energyefficiency reduction and the 30% renewable energy in global energy mix by


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the UNDP has been working and is ready to help countries in Africa to strengthen policy and fiscal space that is inclusive and pro-poor. 2030 offer an excellent platform for accelerating the current MDGs. “The overall electrification rate of sub-Saharan Africa is about 30%. This can be raised. There are proven innovative solutions available. To achieve the universal energy access goals, an extra $756-billion is required, which is less than 3% of th total global energy investments.” Plan of action Vandeweerd says that African countries and the international community must take the universal energy access goals seriously. “Investing in capacity development and massively upscaling of existing successful initiatives are key to achieving these goals.” She says governments should also look at new innovative solutions to overcome extreme energy poverty. For this to happen, the national and global political leadership should commit to setting clear targets to align themselves with the energy-access goals. This entails the creation of fiscal and regulatory policies, building technical expertise and nurturing a network of institutions capable of delivering energy services. “Africa and the international community should support actions on the ground by investing in innovative approaches and business models that will catalyze both public and private finance for universal energy access,” she says. According to Vandeweerd, the UNDP has been working and is ready to help countries in Africa to strengthen policy and fiscal space that is inclusive and pro-poor. “Universal energy access remains a major focus of UNDP strategic priorities. We have extensive experience in this area, as demonstrated by the management of over 2,5-billion dollar energy and climate projects in over 100 countries during the last decade.” Full acknowledgement and thanks are given to the UNDP South Africa for the information given to write this article.

e le c tri c it y

Teaming up to

bring power to the people

The Kusile power station, which is one of two major coal-fired power stations currently being built by Eskom as part of their multi-billion rand expansion, is set to light up South Africa with its use of revolutionary new technology, powering South African homes and industry while complying with international clean-air standards.

Work commenced on the construction of the Kusile Power Station in 2008 and the plant is scheduled for completion by 2017, though at the moment construction is ahead of schedule. Consisting of six generating units and generating approximately 4 800MW, this monolithic new station is situated close to the Kendal power station near eMahlalane (Witbank) in Mpumalanga. Sporting new, state-of-the-art technology, Kusile will be the first power station in South Africa to make use of flue-gas desulphurisation which will remove sulphur dioxide from exhaust gases. This ground-breaking addition to the technology utilised by Eskom will ensure that all newly built power stations comply with international air quality standards, and marks the Kusile power station as a true flagship. Southern Power Maintenance (SPM) is playing a key role in the construction of this exciting new development. After partnering with a prominent electrical services company, SPM will provide the skills and manpower required for the installation of 48 auxiliary transformers at Kusile. This monumental task will be carried out over a period of four years and will serve to cement SPM’s position as an industry leader in the installation and maintenance of transformers. SPM will also be teaming up with prominent industry players in providing technical assistance and know-how on the installation of a further thirteen unit transformers at Kusile. Southern Power Maintenance Tel: +27 861 677 672 E-mail: Website:

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Keeping the lights on: a daunting task for


Written by Nichelle Lemmer It seems that for Eskom to empower South Africans with electricity is an intricate act of balance between generation capacity, maintenance and peak-hour demands. The pressure to keep the lights on is mounting as cut-throat decisions have to be made on a daily basis when power reserves run low. Thava Govender, the divisional executive responsible for power generation at Eskom, recently took members of the South African National Energy Association (SANEA) behind the scenes when he gave a presentation on Eskom’s generation plant performance and maintenance during SANEA’s ”Action for Energy” workshop in Johannesburg. According to Govender, Eskom is currently managing a tight power system, which will continue for the next five and especially the next two years, while

Summer is maintenance season, and with our maintenance backlog we are running a tight schedule to meet the demands. This means that we run the risk of not fully meeting increasing electricity demands as units need to be taken out of service for essential maintenance.” 34

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they expand their capacity. “Eskom kept the lights on from 2008 through to winter 2011, thanks to a lower than expected demand and initiatives put in place to manage the tight system,” he said. Unfortunately this does not mean that Eskom is in the clear. “Summer is maintenance season, and with our maintenance backlog we are running a tight schedule to meet the demands. This means that we run the risk of not fully meeting increasing electricity demands as units need to be taken out of service for essential maintenance.” He gave an overview of Eskom’s struggle to make ends meet, explaining that the organisation came a long way from load-shedding that made headlines in 2007/2008 to successfully providing enough electricity for the Soccer World Cup in 2010. Govender added that although Eskom upholds international standards in performance, this is not always good enough when considering South Africa’s growing demands for electricity. “Our plant performance is still in line with international benchmark standards, but it is deteriorating. We have implemented performance recovery initiatives, but sustaining superior performance levels gets more challenging. Deteriorating plant conditions increase the scope of the maintenance outage.” Peaking at the wrong time Govender says that as the global economy started to recover in 2010, so too did the national peak and energy demand grow to the equivalent of the 2007 levels. “Several of Eskom’s stations are also currently in their midlife and this means that significant refurbishment work is needed. This coincides

e le c tri c it y

This year the electricity demands of the country bring about another set of balls to be juggled. with a high increase in demand that Eskom has to meet and puts us in a tight spot.” He says the maintenance schedule Eskom compiles is based on peak electricity demand projections. What makes the situation even worse is that maintenance was kept to a minimum in 2010 to ensure sufficient capacity during the World Cup tournament. “The overall electricity supply system remained healthy during the month-long tournament despite South Africa experiencing the coldest winter in 20 years.” Govender explains that in 2010 the system was also run much closer to the “red line” compared to 2009 in order to address plant maintenance requirements. “The total amount of maintenance work done was still insufficient and hence a maintenance backlog has developed.” A fine balancing act This year the electricity demands of the country bring about another set of balls to be juggled. Govender stressed that the annual peak demand day that usually occurs in June or July happened on 31 May this year. He says the demand was forecasted to peak at 36 300 MW during the evening. “The total averaged over an hour peak was 37 065 MW. This was managed by using interruption of supply contracts.”

According to him, the demand on Eskom’s capacity was further reduced by using capacity from municipalities, resulting in a peak demand on Eskom of 36 543 MW. The instantaneous peak within the hour was approximately 300 MW higher. To help meet the demand, their open-cycle gas turbines were used to keep the lights on. Govender says the residential usage of power takes up a significant chunk of the peak demand cake. “During the high seasonal period the tariff hike had no significant effect on power usage. The year-on-year growth in residential peak demand is 3,59% and the year-to-date energy growth is 2,71%. This growth can be attributed to a colder winter.” He says that Eskom is resolved to keep the lights on, but they will be tested on this time and again and can’t do it alone. “Energy-efficiency is crucial to ensure there is enough capacity to meet the electricity demand and to provide the required reserve. This also includes the protection of the overall system, as well as to provide the opportunity to perform maintenance, inspections and refurbishments.” Full acknowledgement and thanks are given to Eskom and SANEA for the information given to write this article.

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Leading a green


in the supply chain Imperial Logistics are front-runners in leading the logistics and supply chain of a business towards greener pastures. They demonstrated this through a focus on best practice across the supply chain, logistics delivering operational and economic benefits, while simultaneously limiting their carbon footprint and waste. Adopting a green approach in supply chain management will lead to a reduction in the company’s environmental impact. Their comprehensive strategy towards greener logistics is based on the optimal development of all their resources, like vehicles, drivers and systems. Imperial Logistics also continually evaluates baseline reductions when enabling technologies, fuels and systems that become available on the market.

Taking fuel-efficiency to the next level As a front-runner in seeking green solutions, the company is one of the first in the industry to try and burn as little as possible fuel. When the company does use extensive amounts of fuel, they ensure that it happens with the least amount of harmful emissions. Different specifications are consistently tested to find the ultimate fuel-efficient vehicle. With dedicated “test vehicles” having travelled more than 400 000 kilometres with different engine power, computer settings, final drive ratios and various other changes to the standard vehicle, the company’s technical department found vehicles that is 6% more fuel-efficient. These specifications are currently a standard for groupwide vehicle purchases. Extra distance studies and network redesign

Establishing a green national logistics hub Over the past two years, Imperial Logistics’ member company, Imperial Cargo, has undertaken an inspiring Greenfields project, which has seen the design and building of self-sufficient, green headquarters. Through the project, Imperial Cargo transformed a dumpsite into a logistics service provider (LSP) national logistics hub. The project showcases a pragmatic use of renewable energy and a self-sufficient approach to both power generation and water management. The four-hectare site, which is located between the Paarl and Wellington in the Western Cape, consists of state-of-the-art offices for 120 employees, a 2 000m² warehouse, wash bays and a workshop with nine bays. It is also a renewable energy landmark in the logistics sector. Imperial Cargo currently has one of the largest photovoltaic installations in the province. The photovoltaic system will generate and deliver in excess of 30 461 KWh, with the solar system displacing just 31 tons of CO2 annually. The project has enabled clean, renewable energy usage at the site for the next 20 years. Green asset investment Imperial Logistics is the first logistics company in South Africa to operate using Euro 5 specification vehicles. This pilot project significantly reduces emissions. They aim to build an increasingly sustainable “eco chain” from the vehicle supplier to the logistics company, the retailer and finally to the consumer. In South Africa, trucks are currently available with Euro 3 as the standard. Limited availability of low sulphur diesel throughout southern Africa is the main reason why Euro 4 or Euro 5 technology has not been implemented yet.


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By measuring “extra distance”, logistics practitioners can make better, more informed decisions relating to impactful transportation strategies that will in practice eliminate waste within the supply chain, from resource deployment to unnecessary routes and fuel consumption. Through improved transport planning, Imperial Logistics decreased one customer’s “extra distance” within the supply chain by a further 5,9%, from 6,7% to 0,8% compared to the first phase of this project. This represents an additional cost saving of about R20-million and the elimination of 518 tons in CO2 emissions between the project phases in 2009 and 2010. A second customer faced an interesting challenge with an associated variable cost of R2-million attributed to “extra distance”, of which 75% was directly generated by customer behaviour. Some 16,8% of the distance travelled was “extra distance”. It was found that a 19% transportation saving could be realized by cutting out these kilometres. Imperial Logistics redefines customers’ existing supply chain networks with a view to reduce “dead kilometres”. Technology systems such as i2 Supply Chain Strategist are used to model existing networks. A feature that has recently been added allows for the inclusion of carbon emissions in the modelling process. Introducing nitrogen-powered transport refrigeration To date, Imperial Logistics has invested more than R3,5-million in three ecoFridge trailers, whilst one rigid unit is equipped in the dedicated fleet for a retail customer. ecoFridge is the first zero-emission transport refrigeration system to operate in complete silence. Due to this trial project, it is anticipated that 596 tons of CO2 per annum will be eliminated within the customer’s supply chain. Being nitrogen-powered, it is completely harmless


to the environment. It is also 70-80% faster than mechanical systems in achieving pull-down to set temperature and is virtually maintenance-free. Creating greener pastures

A 6% reduction in kilometres travelled at a packaging contract site resulted in a saving of 200,4 tons of CO2 emissions. At this site, a 22% increase in drops per vehicle was achieved. The 5% increase in drops per vehicle achieved at another contract site resulted in a saving of 22,8 tons of CO2 emissions per year.

Imperial Distribution, an Imperial Logistics member company, operates in a decentralised distribution environment, spanning over 80 operational sites. In order to heighten the company’s competitive advantage, performance optimisation initiatives were implemented with positive eco-economic benefits.

Paper usage was reduced by 20 080 A4 pages annually across all sites, an equivalent of 40 reams. All project sites showed positive payback within just three months and an improved level of staff performance in the centralised planning and monitoring function.

These initiatives include creating a platform to enforce a standard set of operational procedures and measurements, aligned to the organisation’s performance drivers.

These initiatives led to the establishment of a service offering within Imperial Logistics to plan and monitor transport operations, and drive continuous improvement in broader logistics operations.

The company also implemented a national business intelligence platform, using Microsoft SQL server technologies. OPSI Plato, a primary logistics and transport optimising tool, is used for vehicle routing and scheduling. Imperial Distribution also developed a real-time execution management technology in conjunction with OPSI and C-Track and even went the extra mile to develop a decentralised debriefing solution that is web-based. In conjunction with this new system, they reorganised their staff to facilitate a new strategy.

Imperial Logistics won the Mail & Guardian Greening the Future Awards for companies and organisations with innovative environmental strategies that improve business performance. They also received special mention at the Climate Change Leadership Awards. At the awards their contribution to the green logistics evolution as a supply chain leader by their focus on greater vehicle, driver, electricity and waste efficiency, including various valuable support initiatives with the government, industry and academia was mentioned. They also recently won the Logistics Achievers Enviro Award for their green logistics hub in the Paarl.

Eco-economic results

As a result of these initiatives, CO2 emissions were reduced by 316,8 tons of CO2 annually. This includes an increase in drops per vehicle that translated nfor_Ad_CMYK 5/24/11 into A5_FA2.CP.fh11 a saving of 93,6 tons of CO210:06 yearly.PM Page 2

Imperial Logistics Tel: +27 11 821 5500 Fax: +27 11 873 1874 C







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will it reach the boardroom? There is a distinct possibility that 2011 could become iconic as being the year when energy-efficiency incentives, regulations and technical platforms that have come into play inevitably result in energy-efficiency being propelled from the engineering department to the accounts office and the boardroom. This year saw the release of energy-efficiency building regulations, the release of the international ISO 50 001 Energy Management Standard, the publication of the South African Technical Standard for Measurement and Verification of Energy Savings as a National Standard, SANS 50 010:2011, the release for public comment of the National Energy Act’s Regulation for energy-efficiency tax incentives, which is section 12L of the Income Tax Act, amongst many other incentives provided by various banks, Eskom programmes and utilities whom actively seek to make progress in being energy-efficient. Initially environmental conscientiousness, carbon trading, DSM and vast electricity price increases were amongst the main driving forces towards energy-efficiency. But with the release of the proposed 12L Regulation

At the core of any financial reporting of energy savings rests the ability to provide substantiated reporting so that the ROI can be determined and the incentives be granted by the regulating authorities.

Energy Cybernetics has been actively involved in energy management and energy-efficiency projects for over 14 years Energy Cybernetics has been actively involved in energy management and energy-efficiency projects for over 14 years – from developing a strategy, identifying savings opportunities, implementation, training, and measuring and verifying energy savings in a variety of industries in the building, industrial, mining, logistics, CDM, telecommunications, transport, food and beverage, minerals processing, power generation and distribution, and governmental organisations.

Not only will energy-efficiency lower the expense of paying energy costs like electricity, diesel, coal and so forth, but it will now allow the additional benefit of receiving a rebate on energy savings by submitting an energy-saving certificate with the annual accounts submission to SARS. for energy-efficiency tax incentives for public comment, which enables substantiated energy savings to be claimed as a tax rebate from the South African Revenue Service (SARS), it is set to force top management to take a second look at its business-as-usual modus operandi.


With a staff complement of 26 engineers, which includes seven registered certified measurement and verification professionals who can compile 12L Regulation tax rebate reports of energy savings, the company is perfectly positioned to assist organisations in realising the full financial potential that energy-efficiency and energy management can deliver.

Not only will energy-efficiency lower the expense of paying energy costs like electricity, diesel, coal and so forth, but it will now allow the additional benefit of receiving a rebate on energy savings by submitting an energy-saving certificate with the annual accounts submission to SARS.

Energy Cybernetics provides various tools that are tailor-made for each organisation’s requirements from small-scale start-up projects to large comprehensive energy management in accordance with the various standards and regulations.

The success of any of these initiatives lies within the ability to successfully define and strategise energy-saving projects and initiatives, to successfully implement the technologies and systems, and most importantly to educate and train the workforce to ensure continued benefits.

Energy Cybernetics Tel: +27 18 297 5908 E-mail: Website:

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High-end engineering solutions to energy challenges Assuming there are no major shifts in the governments’ policies, statistics from the International Energy Agency’s World Energy Outlook indicate that the global energy demand is predicted to increase by 40% by 2030. Securing sufficient energy sources in order to support continued economic growth in the face of a growing scarcity of fossil fuels, price volatility, regulatory uncertainty and increasing environmental challenges, will demand greater initiative from the market with regard to its approach to energy generation, transmission and distribution. Energy usage and conservation are at the forefront of the sustainability challenge, with renewable energies gaining increasing credibility as markets around the globe begin to invest in viable industries in this space. Aurecon is working with clients to provide innovative high-value technical and advisory services worldwide to harness alternative sources of energy such as wind, solar and hydro. Aurecon has specific expertise in the area of hydropower, having been involved in these types of projects since 1957. They have undertaken hydropower projects in a number of African countries, including South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Uganda, Malawi, Guinea and Congo. With a hydropower capability built on core competencies of geotechnical and civil engineering and water management, combined with world-leading skills in areas such as tunneling, Aurecon is the only consulting company to have successfully designed and developed two small hydropower stations in South Africa in the past 30 years. Aurecon’s hydropower projects included the Nam Theun 2 Hydroelectric Project, which involved construction of a 1 070 MW hydroelectric power station in the Nam Theun River catchment in central Laos. Aurecon was also involved in the Bethlehem Hydro Project, which consisted of the construction of two hydropower stations on the Ash River near Lesotho at two separate sites: Merino and Sol Plaatje. The Bethlehem Hydro Project is a truly unique venture as it is the first privately owned hydropower project undertaken in South Africa in 22 years. The project uses the continuous flow being transferred from the Lesotho Mountains through the Ash River, as part of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project, to generate approximately 6,1 MW of clean, renewable electricity, which is being sold to the Dihlabeng Municipality and Eskom. Aurecon Tel: +27 12 427 2000 Fax: +27 12 427 2010 E-mail: Website: Vol 6 NR 6 2011

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SA cannot remain behind in global technology “South Africa cannot remain behind the global technology curve, which is increasingly focussing on low or zero emissions vehicles,” said the Department of Trade & Industry (DTI)’s deputy director-general, Nimrod Zalk, when addressing delegates at the CAR Conference held at the Johannesburg International Motor Show in October. “In this context the development of a South African electric vehicle provides significant impetus for a strategic entry by our country into the emerging electric vehicle space. “Work is underway to finalise an electric vehicle position paper for cabinet consideration,” he continued.

“There would be a set of corresponding obligations to make sure these sectors raised their competitiveness. We don’t want to see any sectors that are not more competitive three years from the start of the APDP than they are now. We want commitments from these manufacturers,” said Zalk.

“It will include proposals on the creation of a legislative and regulatory environment to allow for the operation of electric vehicles, relative testing infrastructure, local manufacturing for domestic and global markets, the initiation of a charging infrastructure and public educational campaigns on electric vehicles. “The key principle behind this position paper is that South Africa should not simply become a passive importer of electric vehicle technology – as has occurred with a range of other technologies in the recent past – but rather that the country plays a key role in the production of electric vehicles and related technologies and componentry,” explained Zalk. Zalk’s comments came in the light of concerns being raised about the ability of certain members of the component-manufacturing industry to remain internationally viable as a result of the lower export incentives offered under the APDP, when compared to the current situation under the Motor Industry Development Programme (MIDP). He added that the proposed transitional period would run from January 2013 for a limited period of “a couple of years”, but he said that the DTI would expect “something in return” from these component makers.

“One of the commitments the DTI would like to see, for example, is that the ceramic wafer inside a catalytic converter is produced locally and no longer imported, and then simply coated and canned locally. We want to see investment in substrate manufacturing in South Africa,” concluded Zalk. Catalytic converters are South Africa’s biggest automotive component export segment, at 44% of all components exported in 2009 by value. They are used in the exhaust systems of vehicles to reduce harmful emissions. The industry beneficiates South Africa’s abundant platinum-group metals resource. Last year, R11,9-billion worth of catalytic converters was exported to the European Union alone. Commenting on these statements, energy consultant Carel Snyman says: “It is always good to read these positive remarks and one hopes that they are sincere. But do the people who have an intention to make a difference in this area talk to each other? It’s an old cliché, but together we can do more. “South Africa did not wait for the rest of the world to develop the ZEBRA and Li-Ion battery technology – we gave it away in the 1970’s. At that stage we should have persisted with our EV projects,” says Snyman. “Let us now unite our efforts to establish an industry in South Africa that can hold its own against the other initiatives in the world. We can do it.”


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heat pump division up

Neil Ross

and running to regulate industry

The Sustainable Energy Society of South Africa (SESSA) recently created a heat pump division as a building block in their efforts to create a responsible and sustainable energy future in the country. SESSA was given the mandate to establish the division earlier this year, following meetings with key heat pump industry stakeholders in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban. The division was formally constituted in September, when a committee was elected and the first planning session commenced. Neil Ross was elected as the chairperson of the division. He will be supported by vice-chair Anthony Burns. Burns will be responsible for communications, but will also assist with education and training. Gary Wiltshire was elected as the head of associations. Thabo Mncube is in charge of education and training, and he will also be assisting with associations. Chris Horne will manage banks and insurers, Jaco Swart is the head of membership and finance while Lawrence Louw will look after the standards. According to Ross, the heat pump industry provides technology essential for taking both domestic and commercial users into a clean energy era. Its selling points are the money customers save, the once-off Eskom rebate and the sharp decrease in consumption of electricity that result in environmental benefits. “The heat pump division’s mission is to promote the use of heat pump technology across all segments of the market through education and communication. We will engage with all stakeholders in the industry to work in unison and to share industry knowledge,” he said. “Through this, we are adding overall value to the alternative energy industry and furthering our vision of meeting the hot water supply needs of all South Africans.” SESSA already represents more than 500 members through its solar water heating division, an additional 120 through its photovoltaic division and eagerly looks forward to expanding the heat pump division in a similar manner. Irvan Damon, ambassador of the society, says the establishment of the division will facilitate the expansion of a more energy-efficient technology landscape, and further supports SESSA’s mandate of continually striving towards the creation of a low carbon society. “In the lead up to COP 17, it is gratifying to see a heightened awareness of sustainable and efficient energy sources. SESSA is certain the heat pump division will play its role in maximising the impact of this awareness for the mutual benefit of consumers and its members.” Membership of the division will be open to any entity selling, installing or maintaining heat pump technologies, regardless of the size or geographical representation, as well as those involved in providing services, such as finance, to the heat pump industry.

For all





savings Gauteng Office: S&P House, Cnr. Lenchen Ave North & South Street, Centurion, South Africa

Full thanks and acknowledgement are given to SESSA for the information given to write this article.

Box 7270, Centurion, 0046, South Africa

SESSA Tel: +27 11 789 1384 Fax: +27 11 789 1385 Website:

Tel: +27 12 663 3125 Fax: +27 12 663 1960 Cel: +27 83 776 0733 Email: Vol 6 NR 6 2011

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tax incentive regulations available for public comment How to certify your energy savings

Many countries have already introduced various tax and subsidy policies to encourage energy-efficiency. In 2009, Trevor Manuel (South Africa’s previous Finance Minister) announced that the government would provide tax incentives for companies who could show that they were saving energy, which gave way to the Income Tax Act of 1962. The regulation on the allowance for energy-efficiency has now been released for public comment by 15 November 2011. In terms of these tax allowances, industry will be entitled to claim a deduction for substantiated energy-efficiency savings. “This regulation will deliver the currency that most organisations are waiting to capitalise on – tax money,” says Izelle Bosman of the Council of Measurement and Verification Professionals of South Africa (CMVPSA). Background on the South African Income Tax Act of 1962 The South African Income Tax Act of 1962 has offered tax incentives since 2009 using section 12i(2), the Industrial Policy Project Investment incentive for manufacturing-related projects with a 10% energy-demand reduction component. The proposed 12L “Regulations on the allowance for energy-efficiency savings” has been now been released for public comment (the Department of Energy hasn’t announced a date for the promulgation of the regulation).

Stakeholders in the energy-efficiency tax claiming process • SANAS: Accreditation of M&V bodies. • CMVPSA: A council established to protect the interests of all M&V stakeholders by regulating and registering its M&V professionals who perform measurement and verification under the auspices of accredited M&V bodies. • SANEDI: Evaluates M&V professionals’ energy savings reports and issue tax certificates to organisations for submission to SARS to claim section 12i and 12L tax incentives. • SARS: Financial incentive provider.


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According to the regulation, a SANAS (South African National Accreditation System) accredited measurement and verification (M&V) body will have to compile companies’ energy saving reports and the savings have to be certified by SANEDI (South African National Energy Development Institute). The SAEE advises companies wishing to claim tax incentives to contract a potential SANAS-accredited M&V body (this company needs to have a registered M&V professional person employed) as soon as possible because a shortage of these bodies may develop. However, companies should first ensure that their projects are big enough to make the M&V process and tax incentive financially viable. Not only large full-scale electrical projects will qualify for the tax incentives – projects such as energy-efficient lighting, the insulation of certain buildings on your premises, a major upgrade of air-conditioning systems and even reduced used of coal-fired power could make a company eligible for tax incentives. Preparing for tax incentives – these are the steps you need to follow: 1) Formally appoint an M&V professional who is part of a SANAS-accredited M&V body. Registered certified M&V professionals are listed on the CMVPSA website at with the SANAS-accredited M&V bodies listed on the SANAS website at 2) Register with SANEDI for energy-efficiency tax allowance claims at www., supplying your and the SANAS-accredited M&V body’s details. 3) Task the M&V professional to compile an M&V plan and baseline report in accordance with SANS 50 010 for energy-efficiency savings. 4) Submit the M&V professional’s M&V plan and baseline report to SANEDI at the beginning of the financial year for which you want to claim the tax incentive. 5) SANEDI will furnish you with the approval for continuance. 6) On the successful completion of the tax incentive approval process, SANEDI will issue a formal energy savings certificate. 7) Submit the certificate to the South African Revenue Service (SARS) together with the claim for a tax allowance as part of the customary tax returns. *These steps may change when the regulation has been formalised by the Department of Energy. For more information, visit and za, to which full thanks and acknowledgement is given.


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Increased profitability through

greener production The global community is moving rapidly towards clean energy and a greener worldview. With climate change impacts already visible, the green leaders of tomorrow are the front-runners in accepting responsibility for the environment and its health. The National Cleaner Production Centre in South Africa (NCPC-SA) was launched at the World Summit for Sustainable Development in 2002 to assist SA companies in their efforts to enhance their environmental performance and increase their profitability. Fully funded by National Treasury through the Department of Trade and Industry, the NCPC-SA is a member of UNIDO and UNEP’s global resource efficiency and cleaner production (RECP) network, and is governed by an executive committee consisting of representatives from business and government. The NCPC-SA focuses on seven industrial sectors identified in the Industrial Policy Action Plan for 2010 – 2013 (IPAP2) as key to job creation, economic growth and market competitiveness. These are agro-processing; automotives; chemicals; fibres, textiles and clothing; pulp and paper; tourism, and metals fabrication, and capital and and transport equipment. Utilising the RECP methodology, the Centre aims to enhance the sustainability of businesses in these sectors by assisting them in identifying opportunities to increase water, materials and energy efficiency in their plants, thereby also contributing to economic growth and job creation in the country. The Centre also facilitates the Industrial Energy Efficiency (IEE) Improvement Project in SA.

Recent appointments The IEE Project now functions at full strength in terms of staff numbers, with current Pretoria-based staff recently joined by project managers Hemant Grover and Kenosi Mokolobate, training expert Wynand van der Merwe, and information specialist More Manda. The Project also opened an office in Durban, where Johlene Nayaradu was appointed as project manager for the Kwazulu-Natal region, assisted by project coordinator Bianca Latchman. Brent Goliath joined the Cape Town office as project coordinator. “Getting such highly specialised people on board will help us to achieve our objectives,” says Gerswynn McKuur, national manager of the IEE project. Project objectives The Project follows a holistic approach and focuses on four areas that are key to improving energy efficiency in industry: Providing the framework In order to create an enabling environment for industry to implement energy efficiency measures and for government to monitor the impact, a comprehensive policy framework is needed. The Project is assisting the DoE in the review of the National Energy Efficiency Strategy, which will guide energy efficiency practices in the country. Both national and international consultants were contracted to assist in the process, and workshops were held with stakeholders from government, the private sector and industry. The reviewed draft strategy is currently with the Department.

Moving towards a more energy efficient industry Introducing and implementing the standards As reported in 25 Degrees earlier this year, the IEE Project was introduced in SA in 2010 as a joint initiative between the Departments of Energy and Trade and Industry, UNIDO, the Swiss Secretariat for Economic Affairs and the UK Association of International Donors. The objectives of the Project are to contribute to the sustainable transformation of industrial energy usage in industrial energy usage practice in SA, reduce carbon-dioxide emissions, and demonstrate the impact of energy efficiency as a means of increasing sustainability.

The Project supports the objectives of the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) by facilitating the use of standards by industry as tools to achieve greater energy efficiency. The newly published ISO 50001 Energy Management Standard has already been adopted as a South African national standard, and aims to support companies in the following: • Developing a policy for more efficient use of energy. • Setting targets and objectives to meet the policy. • Using data to ensure a better understanding and decision-making concerning energy use and consumption. • Measuring results. • Reviewing the effectiveness of the policy. • Continually improving energy management. The SABS has also released SANS 50010, the national standard for the measurement and verification of energy savings. This specification will enable companies to provide proof of energy savings in order to qualify for government’s energy efficiency incentives. The Project plays an active role in creating awareness of these important initiatives.


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facilitated by the UNIDO and its environment programme. The main objective of the network is to create a platform within the UN to facilitate RECP awareness creation and capacity building at an international level, and enable knowledge management and benchmarking on corporate governance among NCPCs worldwide. It also facilitates business opportunities between member countries and mobilises funding for RECP projects in member countries with limited financial resources; as well as multi-country projects within the different continents. Cleantech competition Skills development The IEE Project also has a strong focus on the training of energy experts. It facilitates regular training workshops on energy management systems (EnMS) and energy systems optimisation (ESO) in Gauteng, KwazuluNatal and the Western Cape. The training and workshops are presented by UNIDO-appointed international experts at introductory, technical user and expert level. EnMS training ensures a holistic approach, while ESO workshops focus on steam, compressed air, pumps, motors, process heating and fans. McKuur says some 900 delegates have attended the workshops since August 2010,.including four groups of expert-level trainees in the areas of EnMS, steam, compressed air, and pumps respectively. The Project will also soon start with the training of auditors to certify companies to ISO 5000. Demonstration projects/showcasing results Opportunities exist for companies to become involved by showcasing or demonstrating the impact of energy savings resulting from recommendations made by the Project. Seven medium to large companies in South Africa are currently pioneering the implementation of an energy management system, and further opportunities ranging from allowing three-day energy audits as a starting block towards energy efficiency, to becoming demonstration plants where the measurable and verifiable impacts of energy efficiency interventions can be reported and showcased. Demonstration plants will be guided throughout the project roll-out and will benefit from the availability of expert consultancy and assistance in EnMS or ESO, a tailor-made EnMS aligned with ISO 50001 and an energy system assessment. Participating companies may also nominate a number of suitable candidates to attend training workshops offered by the Project. Taking climate change strategies to the next level Ndivhuho Raphulu, chief executive officer of the NCPC-SA, believes it is important for industry to have a clear map when exploring their impact on the environment and the effects climate change will have on their businesses. The NCPC-SA offers subsidized services to assist companies in this process. Gaps identified by means of the RECP methodology can be turned into opportunities to reduce their carbon footprint and increase their profitability. “Taking a green approach and investing in resource efficiency and cleaner practices will ultimately give a business a competitive edge in the market,” he says. Raphulu was recently elected as the representative of Sub-Saharan Africa on the executive committee of RECPnet, a global network of NCPCs

In the context of the upcoming COP17 to be held in Durban, UNIDO took hands with the dti and the DEA to implement a GEF-funded “Greening of COP17” project. One of the key components of the project is the launch of the Clean Technology Innovation (Cleantech) competition. This project aims to give green entrepreneurs and SMEs the opportunity to come up with innovative ideas and concepts in energy-efficiency, renewable energy and green buildings. Hosted by the NCPC-SA at the CSIR, the objectives of the competition are to raise awareness and change mindsets about clean technology in the country, whilst at the same time creating opportunities for SMEs and entrepreneurs to find solutions for some of the most critical environmental and economic issues of our day. Entries are expected to lead to job creation and the delivery of improved products or the introduction of new services, thus contributing to initiatives to stimulate the green economy in the country. Innovations can be entered either as a breakthrough green innovation or as an innovative green adaptation of an existing idea in the various categories of the competition. A panel of experts will select semi-finalists in each category, who will receive training and mentorship by local and international industry leaders and have the opportunity to participate in networking events. A maximum of five finalists per category will then be selected. All finalists will receive further top-level training and mentorship, and will showcase their ideas to high-level delegations, potential investors and the media at COP17. They will also be awarded a package of grants and free business support services provided by South African and international private sector partners. The competition will culminate in the announcement of a winner in each track at a special gala event during COP17. The intention is for the Cleantech competition to become a legacy project of COP17, with the support of local and international partners. The NCPC-SA will be contributing to displays at two exhibition stands during COP 17, one at the Department of Trade and Industry’s stand, displaying its the IEE Project and another displaying its RECP services and case studies on the CSIR stand. The winners of the Cleantech competition will also be announced at a side event at COP17. NCPC-SA Tel: +27 12 841 4168/+27 21 658 3983/+27 31 242 2365 E-mail: Websites:; Vol 6 NR 6 2011

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SA Astronomical Observatory stars in energy conservation By Gareth Griffiths, Bsc (SAFREA) A major consideration in the design and ongoing operation of a large observatory such as the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) in Sutherland, where the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) is located, is the comfort of the observer and resident technical maintenance and support staff. Since its commissioning in 2005, the SALT facility has attracted a large number of scientists and observers from around the globe. Data collected by SALT is collated on site and sent via high-speed data transfer to the SAAO Centre in Observatory, Cape Town, where it is further analysed and distributed globally. As the biggest single optical telescope in the Southern Hemisphere, SALT offers unique data to scientists and is able to probe events in the universe way beyond the range of other Southern Hemisphere optical telescopes and also objects out of the range of Northern Hemisphere devices. Using its various science instruments, the telescope probes various objects up to 6-million times too faint to be discerned by the human eye. SALT is a significant scientific project for South Africa and is a similar, but improved version of the HET facility at the University of Texas’ McDonald Observatory near Fort Davis, Texas. SALT is an international project funded by the SA government in collaboration with 12 international partners from 7 countries.

Light is reflected off the special spherical mirror and recorded by the specially designed digital camera, other science instruments, as well as by a sophisticated spectrograph. Hence the provision of modern and comfortable accommodation, recreational and administrative facilities are of prime importance – in enabling both researcher teams as well as technical support teams to live and conduct their work in an extreme climate. Sutherland is alleged to be the coldest town in South Africa. This claim may be challenged by other places such as the Molteno district in the Eastern Cape, but the clear nights of Sutherland often experience temperatures way below zero – perfect for observing the universe but not very friendly to humans. To maximise optical performance, the entire SALT telescope chamber is cooled down to the anticipated temperature at civil twilight from 12 noon (sun at 18 degrees below the horizon) when the dome is opened. Creating comfortable living conditions in an area where cosy fires are forbidden due to smoke particulate emission means heavy reliance on national grid power, backed up by emergency clean-burning fuel-oil generators on site. The observatory is a direct consumer of Eskom power, which is charged at the Ruraflex rate. This means peak rates of close to R3 per kWh dropping to 40c/kWh during off-peak low-demand seasons. Heating in the accommodation blocks, houses and other spaces such as offices and the recreation centre is by large electrical heating panels that consume approximately 25 kWh each per day in the peak-demand season, contributing substantially towards an overall site energy consumption of 145 000 kWh per month in the season. Keith Browne, SALT’s electrical engineer and member of the SAAO Energy-Saving Committee, rose to the challenge of reducing power consumption at the SAAO complex. With power bills of R155 000 per month during the winter, it became a necessity to control budgets and also meet the national energy-saving imperative. Upon inspection of the relevant areas, Browne found that the loss of heat from the main buildings was unnecessarily high owing to the loss of energy from the roof. One of the most visible causes of the problem was the drop in efficiency of glass-fibre based insulation that was installed in the older residences at the time of construction, approximately 30 years ago. “Typically, products that contain dense fibre materials bonded together by resin tend to degrade and collapse over a period of time. They trap dust


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Insulation Depth/Thickness

Reduced Summer Reduced Winter

Blown in


R-Value Heat Flow %

Heat Flow %




























© Gareth Griffiths

TIASA LEVELS OF INSULATION (In accordance with SANS 204-2: Energy efficiency in buildings) THERMAL CONDUCTIVITY = 038 W/M.K

and other particles entering through leaks in the roof space, typical of most SA roofs, therefore compressing further and losing R-value – that should prevent the loss of heat from a building,” explains Richard Ellis, a Cape Town-based expert in thermal efficiency. “During summer, when rooftop temperatures can easily reach +50ºC, the reverse occurs, meaning heat enters the building and power-hungry air-conditioner units have to be cranked up to cool the building,” he says. Removing layers of degraded glass-fibre insulation is a tough job, however, it is undertaken by adequately trained personnel with personal safety equipment and an approved plan for disposal. “Such fibres are notoriously difficult to handle and should not be touched with the unprotected hand,” he adds. “Operators also wear respirators to protect their airways from loose fibres.” Ellis is an approved installer of cellulose-based loose-fill thermal roof insulation, Eco-Insulation. Founded in 2005 by Cecil Homan, the company has achieved great acceptance in the professional and domestic market as a no-nonsense supplier of a green product that achieves excellent energyconserving results and supports the sustainable building imperative. It was honoured by the Southern African Energy-Efficiency Association with their Company of the Year Excellence Award in 2008.

The cellulose product was ultimately chosen after going to tender and installed by Ellis and his team. It was chosen due to its superior insulating characteristics, ease of installation at 100% coverage and costeffectiveness. Having SABS approval and being fire-rated in line with the national building standards was also non-negotiable. Subsequently Eco-Insulation was installed by Ellis’ team over a two-week period in the SALT workshops (a notoriously climate-exposed location), in all accommodation areas, the office area and also in parts of the recreation centre. “Best estimates show that the energy saving is significant – close to 180 000 kWh per annum,” says Browne. “We will be running observations over the ensuing months to get a more accurate picture, but this installation will save the SAAO thousands of rands over the years – payback will be over two years. What’s more, it is considerably more comfortable and warmer indoors this winter.” Eco-Insulation’s founder, Cecil Homan, is delighted with the project. “Eco-Insulation has clearly demonstrated its prowess in the realm of industrial and scientific infrastructure – or should I say the cosmos?” Further info:;

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President Zuma opens new SABS test laboratories The president of South Africa, Dr Jacob Zuma, together with the Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies, recently opened a new state-of-the-art South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) laboratory complex that provides testing, inspection and certification services for chemicals, pharmaceuticals, textiles, clothing and footwear products. The new laboratories will support South African manufacturers to meet local and international quality and safety requirements. 2

Developed to meet the needs of the South African industry, the 13 608m building, comprising nine laboratories, has been designed to achieve a Green Star rating from the South African Green Building Council. Each of the nine laboratories is custom-designed for optimum workflow processes and streamlined efficiency, based on their unique requirements and testing regimes. “These new laboratories are a tremendous boost for our testing and product certification capabilities and exactly what we need to keep up with the needs of our economy. It will support our export sector and enhance requisite testing in the manufacturing sector,” said the SABS chief executive officer, Dr Bonakele Mehlomakulu. The major challenge the SABS has been facing is the impact of ageing and less optimal laboratory infrastructure. As part of a renewal drive of the SABS, the organisation – with the support of the Department of Trade and Industry – commissioned the construction of the new laboratories in January 2010. The new test laboratories will allow the SABS to service its customers more productively and efficiently, focusing firmly on continuing to deliver precise and correct test results within accepted turnaround times. “Our R165-million investment in these new laboratories underlines our absolute commitment to being the trusted supplier of choice in testing, verification and certification services,” added Dr Mehlomakulu. Notably, the new facility puts the organisation in a stronger position to support industry development and facilitate economic growth through supporting its customers to become more competitive in their respective market sectors. This also includes support for growth of the emerging small, medium and micro enterprise (SMME) sector that needs quality-assurance service to supply to larger corporations and government. SABS Nhlanhla Nyide Tel: +27 12 428 6135 E-mail: Website:


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New appointment at DNV

Underlining the importance that South Africa offers to companies involved in climate and environmental systems, Det Norske Veritas (DNV) Climate Change and Environmental Services has recently added to their local presence in Africa by employing Grant Little to be based permanently in their Durban office as business developer manager.

Grant Little joins DNV after returning from Abu Dhabi in the Middle East, where he had been involved in developing projects in the international carbon market. Little is well-known amongst his industry peers and has been active in the greenhouse gas and sustainability field for over a decade. He said: “I am really excited about returning to South Africa to assist in developing this exploding market. Responding to climate change is critical for our generation and having expertise available close at hand can facilitate this.” DNV looks forward to engage with clients who are responding responsibly to the changing climate. People can contact Grant Little via e-mail at or telephonically on +27 71 333 7546. Moreover, clients can also contact DNV at

Energy project launched by mayor The KwaDabeka Community Residential Units (CRU) Energy-Efficiency and Hot Water Pilot Project was officially launched this week by eThekwini Municipality mayor, councillor James Nxumalo, with community leaders and councillors on hand to celebrate the occasion. The launch formed part of the eThekwini Municipality’s COP17 greening project plan. Following a building mapping exercise earlier in the year, it was found that community residential units (formerly known as hostels), constituted the highest percentage of electricity usage of all the building categories managed by the eThekwini Municipality. The aim of the pilot project is to investigate energy-efficiency lighting and hot water solutions as a possible intervention to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions in these buildings. Industrial-sized solar water heaters have been installed on one floor of the KwaDabeka CRU, as well as energy-efficient room, passage

and flood lighting, in the first phase of the project. The project aims to determine the viability of an energy-efficient solution to hot water and lighting in high-density residential environments and is being assessed according to cost-effectiveness, social acceptance and the supply of hot water. A survey conducted among residents after the installation found that many of the residents were “happy to have hot water and were satisfied that they had more time available in the morning now that they had hot water flowing from their showers and sinks”. “The main aim of the KwaDabeka CRU Hot Water Pilot Project is to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions associated with the heating of residential water,” says the head of the energy office, Derek Morgan. “In addition, we hope that the living conditions in the city’s CRU’s will be improved for residents and that the community will become more aware of energy-efficiency and renewable energy options.” Similar energy-efficient projects, using these and other technologies, will be rolled out in other CRU’s based on the learnings from the KwaDabeka Project.

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are made from rubber instead of glass to ensure they are hardy and durable enough to survive long journeys across the continent. The classroom can comfortably accommodate 21 pupils, and includes several layers of insulation and a ventilation system to ensure a temperate environment is maintained. Each classroom is fitted with a 125cm electronic E-board and different Samsung Notebooks and Netbooks, including the world-first solar-powered Netbooks and Galaxy Tablets for student and teacher interface, all of which are optimised for use in a solar-powered environment. “The amount of power generated by the schools each day means they can be used beyond the traditional school day as an adult education centre in the afternoons or a community centre over weekends,” adds Park. “Our goal was to create an environment that would facilitate learning for whole

Solar-powered internet schools launched An innovative solar-powered Internet school model has been launched by Samsung South Africa at its Engineering Academy in Boksburg recently. Claimed to be a world first, the exclusively solar-powered, mobile and completely independent classroom is aimed at increasing accessibility to education and connectivity across Africa. It is designed particularly for use in remote rural areas with limited or no access to electricity. The solar-powered Internet schools model addresses one of Africa’s largest economic challenges – electrification. On average, less than 25% of rural areas on the continent benefit from electricity, resulting in isolated communities with limited access to education and connectivity – both of which are key to fast-tracking a nation’s development. The initiative is exemplary of Samsung’s investment in CSR on the continent: a keen focus on education and harnessing the company’s legacy of innovation to respond to the felt needs of people on the continent. The launch follows the roll-out of Samsung Africa’s “Built for Africa” product range and the Samsung Electronics Engineering Academy earlier this year. “We have set an ambitious goal for ourselves in Africa: to positively impact 5-million lives by 2015,” says KK Park, president and chief executive officer of Samsung Electronics Africa. “We believe that this can most effectively be achieved if we connect our CSR initiatives with our history and core business. “With the goal to grow our business on the continent, we also know that we have to sustain our level of innovation. This can only be achieved if we invest in education to facilitate African thought-leadership and to ensure we have access to a large workforce of skilled engineers in the future. The solar-powered Internet school is a great example of this strategy at play,” he says. Each solar-powered Internet school is built in a 12-metre long shipping container, making it easily transportable via truck to remote areas. The schools are built for energy-scarce environments, harsh weather conditions and transportation over long distances. Fold-away solar panels provide enough energy to power the classroom’s equipment for up to nine hours a day, and for one and a half days without any sunlight at all. The solar panels


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communities in remote areas that otherwise have no access to education tools or Internet connectivity.” The school is also equipped with an energy-efficient refrigerator, a file server, router, uninterrupted power supply (UPS), a video camera and a world-first Wi-Fi camera, all of which are designed to communicate via 3G. This allows a central location (such as the Department of Education) to monitor classes and deliver curriculum-based content directly to both the pupils’ and educators’ Notebooks. The server contains the complete South African school curriculum spanning from grade 0 to grade 12, allowing the school to teach any school-going subject or grade. In the unlikely event of a complete power outage, teachers can continue their lessons using a regular built-in whiteboard and chalkboard. Samsung LED lighting ensures reduced power consumption, while remote solar power diagnostics are in place in the event of a power supply complication. With 21 students and one teacher, as well as other members of the community making use of the classroom daily, Samsung has installed its environmentally-friendly Virus Doctor air-purification system to ward off the spread of germs within the classroom. The Samsung Super Plasma ion (SPi) technology emits active hydrogen and oxygen ions into the air, inhibiting infection by airborne viruses and destroying airborne bacteria, fungi and allergens. The solar-powered Internet school prototype is currently being piloted at the Samsung Electronics Engineering Academy in Boksburg. It will then be sent to Qunu in the Eastern Cape to undergo further testing as a functioning learning and teaching environment, with the aim to scale up production of the schools thereafter. Samsung Tel: +27 11 549 7995 E-mail: Website:


november 9th Maghreb Mediterranean oil & gas week Date: 28 – 30 November 2011 Location: Marrakech, Morocco Contact: Rue Limekhaya Tel: +27 21 700 3500 • Fax: +27 86 551 8811 E-mail: Website: The West African Power Industry Convention Date: 28 November – 1 December 2011 Location: Abuja, Nigeria Tel: +27 21 700 3500 • Fax: +27 21 700 3501 Contact: Spintelligent E-mail: Website: Exploring and Developing Unconventional Gas Resources Date: 28 November – 1 December 2011

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa, Contact: Eugene Azucena Tel: +65 6557 9185 E-mail: Website: China Sourcing Fair: Solar & Energy Saving Products Date: 30 November – 2 December 2011 Location: Johannesburg, South Africa Website: december Service Contracts in the Oil & Gas Industry Date: 05 – 08 December 2011 Location: Johannesburg, South Africa E-mail: Website:

january Making Africa a major focus for climate finance into the post-Kyoto era Date: 24 – 25 January 2012 Location: Johannesburg, South Africa Tel: +27 11 780 5000 Fax: +27 11 780 5002 february CSP Today South Africa 2012 Date: 7 to 8 February 2012 Location: Johannesburg, South Africa Contact: Heidi Hafes Tel: +44 207 375 7206 E-mail: Website:

cop17 events 17th Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC & 7th meeting of the parties to the Kyoto protocol Date: 28 November – 9 December 2011 Location: Durban, South Africa Contact: UNFCCC E-mail: Website:

cop17 week events NGO Summit Date: 28 November – 3 December 2011 Location: University of Kwazulu-Natal, Durban Department: C17 NGO Coalition Global Day of Action for Climate Change – March Date: 3 – 5 December 2011 Location: Durban Department: C17 NGO Coalition Water Roundtable Date: 1 December 2011 Location: Conference (COP17), Durban Department: NBI

Evening Gala Event Date: 2 December 2011 Location: Conference (COP17), Durban Department: UNEP and Climate Action Oceans Day at UNFCCC COP 17 Date: 3 December 2011 Location: Durban, South Africa World Climate Summit Date: 3 – 4 December 2011 Location: Elangeni Hotel, Durban Department: World Climate Summit Forest Day 5 Date: 4 December 2011 Location: Durban, South Africa Mountain Day at UNFCCC COP 17 Date: 4 December 2011 Location: Durban, South Africa World Economic Forum COP17 Green Partnerships Dialoque Date: 4 – 5 December 2011 Location: COP17 CCR expo, Durban Department: DIRCO / DEA

World Business Council for Sustainable Development Date: 5 December 2011 Location: Elangeni Hotel and Nedcor Centre, Durban Department: WBCSD Durban Trade and Climate Change Symposium Date: 5 – 6 December 2011 Location: Durban, South Africa Mayor’s World Summit on Climate Change Date: 4 – 6 December 2011 Location: Durban Department: SALGA, COGTA, SA Cities Network Gala Dineer Mayor’s World Summit on Climate Change Date: 4 – 6 December 2011 Location: Durban City Hall, Durban Department: Ethekwini

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25 Degrees in Africa  
25 Degrees in Africa  

Africa's Independent Energy Publication