March 2015

Wind industry will join celebrations at Renewable Energy Festival in Cape Town

The South African Wind Energy Association’s (SAWEA) Wind4Communities working group is taking a stand at the Word Wildlife Fund’s Renewable Energy Festival at Green Point Track (Corner of Granger Bay Blvd and Fritz Sonnenberg Rd) on Saturday 28 March.

The group consists of members of the wind industry dedicated to working with communities to create benefits and sustainable initiatives from funds generated by wind energy in South Africa.

“As well as providing much needed power to the grid, wind energy generated substantial funds for nearby communities. We are dedicated to working with these communities to ensure these resources are used in the most effective and efficient way, to make a real difference to people’s lives,” explains group chairperson Marion Thompson-Green.

“We are also keen to provide members of the public with information about wind energy in general, the many benefits it brings to the country and any questions they may have for us.”

SAWEA will also be inviting festival goers to join the international #iheartwind awareness campaign, where visitors will be encouraged to write their reasons why they love wind on a specially designed poster and have their photograph taken with their personal words.  More about the campaign here: https://www.sawea.org.za/media-room/press-releases/217-sawea-launches-2015-iheartwind-campaign.html

The stand will also provide facts and statistics on wind energy and detailed information on community benefits and initiatives relating to wind energy.

Other festival events include: music, food and craft stalls and a variety of talks and presentations related to renewable energy.

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Editor’s notes:

For further information or to interview Johan Van den Berg, please mail: admin@sawea.org.za or call +27 (0) 11 2140664.

More information on the festival is available here: www.renewableenergyfestival.com

About SAWEA
SAWEA is a non-profit, industry organisation representing the wind industry in South Africa. Its members include both national and international entities active in the entire wind energy supply chain. Its aim is to promote the sustainable use of commercial wind energy in South Africa; to contribute knowledge and human resources to the streamlining of the policy and regulatory framework for wind in SA; to facilitate synergy between the growth of the industry and the achievement of the broader socio-economic aims of Government (including training, job creation and localisation); to disseminate information; to act as a focal point for discussion between members, government, the media and the public.
For more information visit: www.sawea.org.za

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iheartwind Uploads

The South African Wind Energy Association (SAWEA) has launched an #iheartwind campaign, celebrating people’s love for wind energy across South Africa.

The campaign is based on the international hashtag #iheartwind which encourages people from around the globe to participate. Please join our South African campaign using these 4 easy steps:

  1. Print the #iheartwind poster here
  2. Write why you love wind power
  3. Take a photo of yourself with the sign – (you can even get creative and take your photo in front of a wind farm, or with the child that you hope to protect from pollution)
  4. Post it on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram with the hashtag #iheartwind and @_sawea
  5. Upload it to our dedicated page at https://sawea.org.za/iheartwind-posts by using the form below.
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Multibillion-rand renewable-energy boost for EC

The East London industrial development zone (IDZ) will develop a wind farm that will generate in excess of three-million kilowatt-hours a year of electricity, Eastern Cape Economic Development, Environmental Affairs and Tourism MEC Sakhumzi Somyo announced on Wednesday.

He said the IDZ, which was working with a local wind turbine manufacturer, would save R98-million in electricity costs over 20 years and would strengthen energy security for industries based at the IDZ.

The Eastern Cape had a sizeable renewable-energy footprint with independent power producers (IPPs) having secured licences for 12 wind farms and one solar farm.

Somyo pointed out that, not only did renewable energy provide security of supply for the province, but IPPs would invest R1.6-billion in enterprise and social development programmes, which would benefit local communities over the 20-year life of the projects.

Local content for these projects, which was to be procured from within the province, was projected at R7.5-billion and would stimulate the development of localised industries and the green economy, said Somyo.

He further noted that the R3.5-billion Dedisa peaking power plant at the Coega IDZ would come on line later this year. The plant would generate 342 MW of electricity through its open-cycle gas turbines.

Somyo added that the agroprocessing and ocean economy sectors were also expected to contribute to economic growth and job creation in the province.

Edited by: Chanel de Bruyn
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Wind industry to celebrate providing solutions to energy crisis at annual conference

The wind industry’s leading conference has announced dates for its annual conference in Cape Town.  The South African Wind Energy Association’s (SAWEA) ‘Windaba 2015’ will take place from 4-5 November at the Cape Town International Conference Centre.

The theme of this year’s conference is ‘Powering the Winds of Change’ and reflects the industry’s conviction that wind energy can fill South Africa’s current energy gap with low cost, clean electricity which can be brought on grid within a relatively short time frame.

“Our current energy crisis is causing us all to look harder for a solution to our power shortages,” comments SAWEA CEO Johan Van den Berg.”The Government and the public are realising that wind energy can bring more electricity to the grid quickly and cheaply. The Government’s renewable energy procurement programme (REIPPPP) has stimulated investment and created a thriving market for wind energy. Now we are in the position where we can rise to the challenge of helping to keep the lights on.”

A report from the Centre of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) earlier this year revealed that wind and solar photovoltaic (PV) power plants saved South Africa R500 million more than they cost in 2014. Electricity produced from these plants saved the power system R4.8 billion in diesel, coal and avoided load-shedding – as well as reducing the inconvenience and wider economical impact of blackouts. The cost of the renewable electricity was R4.3 billion.

“The government has set up a ‘war room’ to try to solve the current crisis and they asked us to submit figures demonstrating how quickly the wind industry can provide more wind farms and contribute more power to the grid. We had already concluded that renewable energy brings the only affordable, short to medium-term solution prop up our grid,” explains Mr James White (Vestas).

The inaugural conference attracts wind industry professional from all over the world, with more than 500 delegates attending in 2014. Another line-up of impressive speakers and government representatives is expected again this year.

 

-Ends-

Editor’s notes:

For further information or to interview Johan Van den Berg, please mail: admin@sawea.org.za or call +27 (0) 11 2140664.

WINDaba is the official wind industry event hosted by the South African Wind Energy Association (SAWEA) in partnership with GWEC. The annual conference and exhibition will take place from 4-5 November 2015, at the Cape Town International Convention Centre. For further information please visit www.windaba.co.za

CSIR report referenced: http://www.csir.co.za/docs/Financial%20benefits%20of%20Wind%20and%20PV%20in%202014-%20CSIR%20-%2021Jan2014_FINAL.pdf

About SAWEA

SAWEA is a non-profit, industry organisation representing the wind industry in South Africa. Its members include both national and international entities active in the entire wind energy supply chain. Its aim is to promote the sustainable use of commercial wind energy in South Africa; to contribute knowledge and human resources to the streamlining of the policy and regulatory framework for wind in SA; to facilitate synergy between the growth of the industry and the achievement of the broader socio-economic aims of Government (including training, job creation and localisation); to disseminate information; to act as a focal point for discussion between members, government, the media and the public.

For more information visit: www.sawea.org.za

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SAWEA launches local #iheartwind campaign

The South African Wind Energy Association (SAWEA) has launched an #iheartwind campaign, celebrating people’s love for wind energy across South Africa.

The campaign is based on the international hashtag #iheartwind which encourages people from around the globe to participate. Please join our South African campaign using these 4 easy steps:
 

  1. Print the #iheartwind poster here
  2. Write why you love wind power
  3. Take a photo of yourself with the sign – (you can even get creative and take your photo in front of a wind farm, or with the child that you hope to protect from pollution)
  4. Post it on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram with the hashtag #iheartwind and @_sawea
  5. Upload it to our dedicated page at https://sawea.org.za/iheartwind-posts by using the form below.

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New study forecasts doubling of renewables capacity by 2025

The global installed capacity of renewable energy could more than double to 3 203 GW in 2025 from 1 566 GW in 2012, new analysis by Frost & Sullivan shows.

The study, titled ‘Annual Renewable Energy Outlook 2014’, anticipates an average yearly growth rate of 5.7% and for solar photovoltaic (PV) technology to account for 33.4% of total renewable-energy capacity additions over the period.

Wind is expected to follow with 32.7% of new capacity additions, ahead of hydropower at 25.3%, while other renewable technologies will represent the remaining 8.6%.

Industry director Harald Thaler also expects emerging economies to play a larger role, as the weak economic climate in Western Europe affects support schemes.

More than 130 countries currently have supportive policies in place for renewables, which has translated into a dramatic rise in renewables investment in recent years.

In addition, a decline in the cost of renewable energy, as a result of technological innovation and economies of scale, has also enabled developing countries to adopt these technologies.

The cost of solar PV modules, for instance, have dropped by about 70% between 2008 and 2013, making solar more competitive with fossil-fired power and driving accelerated adoption rates.

Renewable-energy installations in 2013 saw the continued, gradual shift in market power to emerging economies, where economic growth and revised energy priorities will drive a sustained increase in the adoption of renewable energy,” Thaler says.

Edited by: Creamer Media Reporter

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Greenpeace ship returns to SA, highlights solutions to electricity crisis

Greenpeace’s iconic ship, the Rainbow Warrior, has arrived in Cape Town for a month long tour of the South African coastline, as part of a Greenpeace campaign to highlight its conviction that renewable-energy investments are the solution to the current electricity crisis.

The environment-friendly ship will dock at Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront from February 9 to 16.

Greenpeace Africa executive director Michael O’Brien Onyeka said welcoming the Rainbow Warrior to South Africa at a time when the country was threatened by stage 3 load shedding was really important for Greenpeace Africa.

“The country is in crisis, and it is clear that the solution to load shedding is not more investments in coal and nuclear, but [rather] in removing the barriers to renewable energy.

“The ship will be used to highlight how renewable energy puts power back into people’s hands, and is already delivering on time and on budget,” he said.

The new Rainbow Warrior is one of the most environment-friendly ships built to date and is at the cutting edge of clean technology. She replaces the Rainbow Warrior II, which retired on August 16, 2011, after "22 tireless years at the campaigning frontline" and the original Rainbow Warrior, which was bombed in 1985.

The original Rainbow Warrior is best known for helping to end nuclear testing in the Pacific, blocking coal ports and closing down destructive fishing operations.

Greenpeace Africa campaigns for a just transition away from coal and nuclear energy and towards a clean energy future based on renewable energy in South Africa,” said O’Brien Onyeka

“The return of the Rainbow Warrior is a true honour for Africa, and we are confident that this visit will empower Greenpeace Africa with the tireless spirit of the global organisation that is required to win major campaigns and build on the successes achieved so far on the continent,” he added.

“The Rainbow Warrior is an important campaign tool for Greenpeace globally, in order to expose environmental crimes and advocate for solutions for the many citizens that are suffering from environmental injustices. Having the Rainbow Warrior here today is a reminder to our leaders on the continent, that the time to act is now.

“We cannot, and we should not, destroy our legacy to our children,” said O’Brien Onyeka.

Edited by: Creamer Media Reporter
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“Zero cost” renewables the shortest term supply solution to ease energy crisis

Dear members

Please find below a media release that the South African Renewable Energy Council (SAREC) issued.

28 January 2015

“ZERO COST” RENEWABLES THE SHORTEST TERM SUPPLY SOLUTION TO EASE ENERGY CRISIS

The South African Renewable Energy Council welcomes the conclusions of a recent CSIR report showing that the net cost of South Africa’s renewable energy in 2014 was less than zero and reiterates that the industry is willing, ready and able to do much more to ease the country’s electricity shortage, now predicted to lead to load shedding for the next 3 – 5 years.

The Council points out that the value of renewable energy in a constrained electricity system is clear and has previously been pointed out by The University of Stellenbosch Centre for Renewable and Sustainable Energy Studies (http://www.crses.sun.ac.za).

The CSIR report “Financial benefits of renewables in South Africa in 2014”, released on 21 January 2015, demonstrates that the 1,600 MW of renewable energy installed by December 2014 has saved the country ZAR 5.3 billion in diesel, coal and avoided load shedding while costing the country only ZAR 4.5 billion in tariffs.

“The results of this study truly underline the economic value of renewable energy to the South African electricity consumer”, said Mike Levington, board member of SAREC who has been participating in recent discussions between government and business. “While Round 3 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (“REIPPPP”) has seen the prices for electricity from the major renewable technologies generally fall well below the likely cost for new Eskom power, the constrained grid and the very high costs for diesel/load shedding have meant that renewables built under Round 1 saved the country more in 2014 than they cost.”

The CSIR report noted that the country was saved ZAR 3.7 billion in diesel and coal fuel costs and a further ZAR 1.6 billion through the avoidance of 120 hours of load shedding.  Government’s far-sightedness in establishing REIPPPPP in 2011 is now yielding dividends in making a measureable contribution to easing Eskom supply problems and will contribute even more as the plants presently under construction come online on a continuous basis through 2015 and beyond. Moreover, it is expected that the preferred bidders for Round 4 will be announced soon, potentially putting another 1,100 MW of renewable energy into the pipeline to produce electricity. The CSIR report was done on conservative assumptions and did not factor in the job creation and socio-economic benefits of the REIPPPP programme, with more than ZAR 11 billion already pledged by the industry for investment into rural communities over the next twenty years.

Professor Wikus van Niekerk of Stellenbosch University is unequivocal in his response: “We are electricity constrained as a country and using far more peaking power for mid-merit generation than we should”, he asserted. “Renewable Energy, particularly wind and PV, are “fuel-savers” and could therefore make a significant contribution at this time, saving Eskom and the country money. There are however a number of barriers to particular for roof PV projects put in place by Eskom that need to be addressed to allow even Eskom-subsidised projects to connect to the grid.   A reasonable feed-in tariff for rooftop PV – lower than at the Eskom generation cost at Medupi and Kusile – could facilitate a number of roof to PV project to come online, still in this year.”

Pancho Ndebele, also of the SAREC Board, stresses that renewable energy is the most feasible supply option that can be deployed at scale within the timeframe of the severe electricity crunch. “A total of 6,000 MW of renewable energy projects were bid in Round 4 of REIPPPP”, he stressed. “These are projects that have done all feasibilities, received environmental and all other regulatory approvals and have been assessed by lending institutions as being financially sound. They are ready for implementation and will be funded by private capital at very affordable rates. Importantly, a number of these projects can be constructed and connected to the grid in a 14-24 months’ time frame. In light of the load shedding and fuel savings demonstrated in the CSIR study, these projects can take considerable pressure off diesel purchases and load shedding schedules. Other supply options, when large, tend to be ten or more years away, and if smaller tend to be still more than five years away. Renewable energy is a viable part of the solution to the present supply crisis. With about ZAR 1 billion per month being spent on diesel and load shedding costing the country ZAR 87/kWh, we should aggressively increase our renewables ambition.”

Carryn Bateman, who represents SESSA on the SAREC Board, adds that the present crisis is one to which SESSA members have a lot to contribute. “Rooftop Solar PV is perhaps the fastest supply side solution available”, she points out. “And it can be done at significant scale close to where the electricity is needed“. Her colleague James Green, who heads SESSA’s solar water heater division, agreed and said that solar water heaters had the potential to significantly alleviate the electricity crisis. “We can install about 50,000 high pressure units before year end”, he predicted, “saving the country a usage of 8 kW daily in each case, and also removing all peak from those electric geysers going solar. This a fast track for getting both GWh and peak off the grid, with payback to consumers in less than 5 years.

Proponents of wind energy are equally enthused. Mark Tanton, SAREC Board member representing SAWEA, stressed that for wind, 0.6 GW of wind installed saved the system real cash on a net basis, because the pure fuel savings value of wind was 0.23 R/kWh higher than the cost of the wind power produced. “If avoided load shedding is added, the value of wind power to the country is even more compelling”, he asserted.

Notes to Editors:

For more detail about SAREC, see www.sarec.org.za
For interview requests and more detail, call Marilize Stoltz at +27 (0) 11 214 0660
For the full CSIR media release, see http://ntww1.csir.co.za/plsql/ptl0002/PTL0002_PGE157_MEDIA_REL?MEDIA_RELEASE_NO=7526622

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DoE tests market for near-term power demand reduction offers

South Africa’s Department of Energy (DoE) has issued a formal appeal for companies and individuals to provide it with information on possible near-term solutions to reduce or shift electricity demand, as well as to immediately improve supply – the responses will guide the design of future procurement processes.

Government’s Independent Power Producer (IPP) Office released the request for information (RFI) in mid-December and responses need to be submitted by February 2.
 The RFI documentation notes that demand response and/or distributed generation strategies are “critical” to improving the reserves needed by the system operator to better employ available generating capacity and to allow for higher levels of power-station maintenance. The anticipated daily shortfall, the RFI adds, is likely to be between 3 000 MW and 5 000 MW until additional generation capacity is introduced.

Differing seasonal requirements are also highlighted, with savings targeted for between 9:00 and 21:00 in the summer months from September to April and between 17:00 and 20:00 from May to August.

The RFI follows the adoption by Cabinet in December of a five-point plan designed to stabilise the electricity supply sector, which has become increasingly prone to disruption, owing to a delay in Eskom’s build programme and a decline in the performance of the utility’s aging generation fleet.

The paid-for advertisement also acknowledges the depth of the electricity problem, describing it as a “crisis” – a stark deviation from the official stance adopted by Eskom, which has continually avoided using the word crisis to describe the state of the power system.

Included in the Cabinet-endorsed plan is a directive that private IPPs, cogeneration and demand-side solutions be harnessed with the support of various procurement programmes. Also emphasised is an ambition to manage demand “through specific interventions within residential dwellings, public and commercial buildings and municipalities through retrofitting energy efficient technologies”. The DoE believes that demand-side could free up 500 MW within six months.

This approach has been strongly supported by Business Leadership South Africa, which says big business stands ready to support the implementation of the five-point plan, including through the accelerated demand side management interventions.

The specific objective of the RFI is to gather information and test the market for innovative demand response and/or distributed generation solutions. The DoE notes that similar exercises proved useful ahead of the design of the renewable-energy procurement process, through which nearly 4 000 MW of capacity has been procured. In addition, market testing is helping guide the design of baseload and cogeneration procurement initiatives.

This RFI is particularly interested in companies and individuals with dispatchable demand response solutions, as well as in energy efficiency, load management and fuel switching proposals. In addition the RFI is also seeking information on distributed generation prospects, despite the fact that the regulations are not yet fully supportive of allowing individuals and businesses to feed excess capacity back into the grid.

“This RFI is intended to generate information to assist the department to assess the size, type and nature of the possible solutions available to enable it to develop appropriate strategies, as well as the options with solutions to implement such strategies,” the department explains.

Responses are being sought from independent demand-response aggregators, developers of innovative demand-side management projects and distributed generators, but the DoE stresses that the RFI will not be used as a basis for prequalification.

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