Roll-out of 100000 solar water heaters resumes

Posted by: Yes Solar Cape (Cape Town, South Africa) – 15 September 2010

Three ground-breaking renewable energy projects earmarked for Nelson Mandela Bay with a combined investment value of more than R1-billion are on track, with at least one to start being implemented before the end of the year, top project officials have revealed.

Solar hot water. Evacuated tube installation.

They include the resumed roll- out of up to 100000 solar water heaters (high-pressure solar-powered geysers) to residents after the R900-million project was put on ice in June, as well as a proposed wind farm at Van Stadens consisting of up to 15 giant wind turbines, and methane gas harvesting facilities at the Arlington or Koedoeskloof waste disposal sites.

Because the three projects are being funded by ETA Energy Ltd – a subsidiary of parastatal the Central Energy Fund (CEF) – they are on track and unaffected by the Bay municipality’s cash-flow problems which has seen many infrastructure projects halted.

The three projects will see the metro catapulted to the forefront of attempts by cities around the country to minimise their dependence on energy provider Eskom and its steep annual price increases by “going green”. Continue reading

Pigs power Limpopo farm

Posted by: Yes Solar Cape (Cape Town, South Africa) – 29 August 2010

Miss Piggy is not the only porker that can make money from hot air. Limpopo farmer Willie Humphries, 34, is using the waste from his 17000 pigs to create methane gas, which is then converted into electricity.

His family farm – Humphries Boerdery outside Bela-Bela – uses at least 30kW of electricity daily from a hi-tech generator, housed in a 6m-long shipping container, that converts the biogas into electricity.

Electricity generated from pig effluent, including pig urine, is used to run all his farming operations – including the electrical motors that process food for the 26 pig pens – as well as the heating and temperature control in the grower houses, the boreholes and for domestic use in the farmhouse.

The project has also been brought to the attention of the Department of Energy in the hope of securing finance to provide households from a nearby informal settlement with power and gas for cooking.

At least 9000 tons of pig effluent at the 520ha farm is stored in a biodigester – a 60m x 60m storage tank that is almost 5m deep. The air-tight tank is sealed with thick plastic to prevent leakage into the groundwater. Continue reading

MTN to migrate to cleaner sources of energy

Posted by: Yes Solar Cape (Cape Town, South Africa) – 12 August 2010

MTN is spending R22m to reduce carbon emissions at its headquarters by building a power plant fuelled by methane gas.

The “tri-generation” plant will produce 2MW of electricity and use an estimated 800 kilowatts of waste heat to air-condition the company’s buildings in SA, MTN said. MTN is applying to earn carbon credits from the project from the United Nation’s CDM programme.

MTN says it wants to migrate to alternative, cleaner sources of energy to “address environmental and commercial costs over the longer term.”

The company is currently looking at using solar, wind and hydrogen fuel cells to power its base transceiver stations in several African countries including Sudan, Cameroon, Ivory Coast and Swaziland.

Generating its own energy also protects MTN from an unreliable electricity supply enabling it to roll out its services to areas off the grid, the firm said.

Source: Money Web