Why wage war for a slice of SA’s electricity pie?

  It’s unfortunate that titles such as “It’s war: Nuclear versus renewables” and “Renewable energy is being crushed in the coal and nuclear grinder” are used in articles about the energy sector. I have never, in my 15 years working in the energy sector, heard the coal or nuclear industry proponents argue that renewable energy […]

Earthing and lightning protection association launched

  The Earthing and Lightning Protection Association (ELPA) was launched on 19 June 2017 to regulate the lightning protection industry, establish a uniform interpretation of the codes of practice, and to protect the rights of the end-user. In his keynote address at the launch on the Wits University Johannesburg campus, Prof. Ian Jandrell, dean of […]

SAREC: Failure by DoE to solve PPA saga disappointing

  The South African Renewable Energy Council (SAREC) is deeply disappointed that the Department of Energy (DoE) and Eskom failed to provide any certainty for investors during the recent update to parliament on Eskom’s failure to sign Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) with Independent Power Producers (IPPs). The inter-governmental task team has instead proposed further delays […]

Eskom’s revolving door, endless scandals cloud SA’s energy future

  Eskom’s revolving door and constant scandals have not only crippled the state power utility, but hampered any meaningful debate on what energy technologies could shape South Africa’s economy. On Monday night embattled Eskom chairperson Ben Ngubane announced his exit, the latest in shock to hit the tumultuous state utility. While Eskom and South Africa’s […]

Sociology and technological totalitarianism

  My encounter with sociology goes back several months when a statement made in the media that we needed more engineers in society to uplift standards, among others, was met with horror by two sociology professors, who seemed to regard engineers  as inhuman creatures only interested in technology. It includes a recent encounter with a […]

Resistance to hydropower is evaporating as science takes centre stage

  Big dams have a bad reputation. They’re often associated with social disruption and environmental damage. That perception is now shifting. The challenges of climate, urbanisation and economic growth in countries and communities already burdened by poverty and underdevelopment is leading to a radical change in attitudes. Dams and related water infrastructures are once again […]