Projects and energy weekly snippets

Weekly projects and energy updates in South Africa

Legal and policy certainty required if gas economy is to be realised

Speaking at the Africa Liquefied Petroleum Gas Summit, held in Johannesburg last month, he [South African Oil and Gas Alliance CEO Niall Kramer] suggested that the MPRDA, when passed, would be a key enabler for the economy, stating that South Africa is a “frontier market”, as it had not started any gas exploration of scale.

Kramer, however, asserted that the Act should be commercially viable and attractive to the gas industry.

“This year is a critical year for South Africa to progress in establishing a gas economy,” he said, noting that he would like to see LNG being imported through the allocated three ports – Richards Bay, Coega and Saldanha.

“That, in one sense, would start a gas economy of large scale.”

Engineering News, 4 August 2017 

As batteries make power play, South Africa mulls market participation

Today, the chase is on to produce safe, cheap batteries with a longer life cycle, increased storage capacity, a wider optimal temperature operating range and higher power output.

Rechargeable batteries power portable hand-held devices and electric vehicles (EVs), and are also used in stationary energy applications, such as storing power from renewable-energy sources like solar farms.

In short, electrical energy storage is the new oil, the new wave of opportunity in the energy sector.

While South Africa does not have oil, it does have many of the raw materials required for batteries. Is the country, however, ready, willing and able to cash in on the new energy revolution?

Engineering News, 4 August 2017 

Zambia’s offgrid homes to be equipped with pay-to-own solar home systems

In partnership with the Swedish Embassy in Zambia, which committed nearly US$3 million to the project up to 2020, Fenix is taking its first step in expanding its flagship product, ReadyPay Power, across Africa, after successful deployment in Uganda.

ReadyPay Power, which is also supported by aid of US$750 000 from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), provides offgrid customers access to affordable, expandable solar home systems to power households and small businesses.

In a deal with MTN, Fenix customers with the installed system will make instalments of around US$0.20 a day through MTN Mobile Money until they have paid for the system in full.

“Approximately 15 million Zambians live without access to the electrical grid, representing 80% of the total population and 95% of rural residents,” explained Fenix International CEO Lyndsay Handler.

Engineering News, 2 August 2017

DBSA committed to funding infrastructure projects throughout SADC

“There has, however, been a lot of progress regarding energy in the region,” he said [Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) strategy group executive Mohan Vivekanandan], addressing delegates on Tuesday at the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Industrialisation Week, in Johannesburg.

“The SADC region has moved from a deficit [of power capacity] to a surplus, with the latest figures from the Southern African Power Pool showing that there is 1000 MW of excess capacity as a region,” he said.

The challenge now, he noted, was strengthening the interconnectivity of the transmission grid.

“The DBSA is working closely with SADC counterparts on the area’s infrastructure agenda. According to the SADC master plan, the region has to invest ZAR33 billion a year to develop the energy and transport sectors,” he said.

Engineering News, 1 August 2017 

Collaboration key to developing gas projects in SADC region

Speaking at the SADC Industrialisation Week in Johannesburg, Gauteng, on Tuesday, Thyse [Sasol group regulatory services VP Johan Thyse] pointed out that the Mozambique and South African governments, together with Sasol, have, to date, invested ZAR24 billion in the ongoing pipeline project, or Loop Line 2, which involves expanding the capacity of the existing 865 km gas pipeline from the central processing facility (CPF) at Temane, in Mozambique, to Secunda, in South Africa.

The project will comprise the installation of a pipeline – parallel to the existing pipeline – from scraper station 1 (STS1), which is about 128 km from the CPF, over 127 km, where it will reconnect to the main pipeline at scraper station 2.

The pipeline will initially transport gas to South Africa, but will also be able to serve additional markets in Mozambique and South Africa as gas becomes available.

Loop Line 2 will increase the pipeline’s available yearly gas transportation capacity from 169.4-billion standard cubic feet (bscf) to 191 bscf.

Loop Line 1, which runs from CPF to STS1, was commissioned in December 2014.

Engineering News, 1 August 2017 

The above reflects a summary of certain news articles published during the preceding week. It is not an expression of opinion in respect of each matter, nor may it be considered as a disclosure of advice by any employee of Hogan Lovells.

For more information contact Charles MaraisPhilip van Rensburg or Mzimasi Mabokwe.

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