South Africa’s National Water Week kicks off on Monday, 20 March while globally World Water Day is celebrated on Wednesday, 22 March. In the informal settlement of Langrug in Franschhoek, an innovative wastewater treatment project is changing the lives of the community for the better while reversing the effects of water pollution in the Berg River. “The only way to stay healthy is to work hand in hand with each other and with Genius of Space, since they are trying to change our lives in the community,” says Vumile William Dlova, who is working as a flow agent in the Biomimicry Genius of Space project. He adds: “This system changed the community because our children are now playing in a clean, dry place with no dirty water running between houses. There are no more flies around. We are living in a healthy environment.” Although water and sanitation are generally available in Langrug informal settlement, these services are limited and have led to the disposal of wastewater and solid waste throughout the settlement, causing a health hazard and flowing into storm water drains and ultimately into the Berg River and polluting it. The Genius of Space system gives Langrug residents the opportunity to dispose of their grey water in disposal drums where it is filtered. The water then flows into a system of underground pipes into tree gardens were it gets treated. Some 500 Langrug residents are currently using the 27 disposal points in the settlement. During the upcoming African Utility Week in Cape Town in May, water conference delegates will attend a special site visit to the Genius of Space project at Langrug to see a successful project based on biomimicry principles in action. Biomimicry means the design and production of a system that is modelled on biological processes. Strong focus on all aspects of water As always, water management forms an important part of African Utility Week and this year the conference will focus on how private public . . .
Huawei, the well-known global information and telecommunication giant, has signed a platinum sponsorship with African Utility Week, the leading conference and trade exhibition for African power, energy and water professionals, taking place from 16-18 May 2017 in Cape Town. The company will also be the lead sponsor of the African Utility Week Industry Awards. Additionally, Huawei will host its 5th Huawei Power Summit, where Huawei will demonstrate its industry-leading solutions. This summit will be co-located at African Utility Week on 17 May from 14h00 – 18h00. The main theme for Huawei’s showcase this year is “Leading New ICT, The Road To Smart Grid” and will host its exhibition area in Auditorium 2. Mr. Jerry Ji (Xiang) is President of Energy Industry at Huawei’s Enterprise Business Group: “Huawei hopes that through Africa's most influential energy expo, we will better understand the needs of our customers and integrate Huawei's latest solutions and practices into smart grids to help the African power companies achieve safe, efficient operations and green sustainable development, and thus enriching lives in the era of energy intelligence.” “We have been honoured to have Huawei as a long-term partner with not only African Utility Week, but also our regional power shows on the continent,” says event director Evan Schiff, adding: “we are thrilled that they have chosen to expand their investment in the show, and we believe this is testament to the value we offer to our esteemed partners. We take our task of gathering the best in the industry to discuss the challenges, solutions and successes very seriously and as market leader, Huawei should be part of that conversation. We look forward to their contribution in May.” Real world doers share their expertise The 17th annual African Utility Week will gather over 7000 decision makers from more than 80 countries to source the latest solutions and meet over 300 suppliers. Along with multiple side events and . . .
Generating value and creating agility in the evolving business landscape of power and utilities With the firm’s goal to focus on ‘future proofing’ in an effort to prepare for both foreseeable and unforeseeable forces that are fundamentally changing the power and utilities industry, KPMG has taken up a diamond sponsorship opportunity at the 2017 African Utility Week. This is part of the firm’s strategy to execute their mastery from an advisory perspective. Apart from the wealth of knowledge that the firm has to offer to African Utility Week’s attendees, KPMG looks forward to exercising their commitment to helping organisations with robust, sustainable and flexible strategies, in addition to models that can adapt quickly in a dynamically unfolding future. When KPMG’s experts were asked about the biggest challenges currently engulfing the sector, the first issue that they outlined was that energy security remains elusive on the African continent. The International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that two out of three people in sub-Saharan Africa do not have access to electricity. This translates into 620 million people on the continent without electricity – and for those that have – the supply is unreliable and very expensive compared to world standards. “There is an emerging trend in the sector. Utility-scale developments are decreasing, while we see a lot more of community-sized generation projects. Businesses and communities are also showing interest in becoming less dependent on the national grids. In rural Africa, especially, the economics of expanding the national grids do not make sense, hence there is a significant trend towards mini-grids and other off-grid solutions,” says Ahmed Jaffer, Chairman of KPMG in South Africa and the Head of Power and Utilities. De Buys Scott, Senior Partner in Deal Advisory and Head of Infrastructure Advisory at KPMG in South Africa, adds that gravitating towards off-grid and smaller solutions in terms generation . . .
Nominations are open for top industry professionals and projects “I know the energy revolution is powering up and ready to take off. We should embrace energy trade with each other”. With these words Mr Kandeh Yumkella, UN Under-Secretary-General and Former Special Representative of the Secretary-General and CEO, Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All), accepted the Lifetime Achievement Award at last year’s African Utility Week Industry Awards. The fourth edition of the annual African Utility Week Industry Awards will once again honour pioneering utilities, projects and people in the energy and water industry on the continent on Wednesday, 17 May, during African Utility Week and Energy Revolution Africa at the CTICC in Cape Town. Award categories vary from the Power and Water Utility of the Year Awards, Young Energy Leader Award and Outstanding Woman of the Year: Power/Water and include exciting new categories to reflect the latest developments and evolution of the energy and water sectors. The new categories include: • Small-Scale Sustainable Energy Project (under 5MW) • Innovative Technology of the Year • Deal of the Year • ICT Excellence Award • Gas-to-Power Project of the Year Benchmark of excellence These prestigious industry awards will be presented during a gala dinner welcoming 800 of Africa’s most distinguished power and water industry professionals to recognise those that represent a benchmark of excellence for the industry. Entries for nominations for the awards close on 17 March and the public is invited to nominate themselves or colleagues and projects that have made outstanding contributions to the energy and water sectors. Johannesburg’s City Power, George Airport and Akon Lighting Africa were also amongst the exciting and pioneering power and water professionals, utilities and projects that were winners at last year’s sold-out awards gala evening, while Uganda’s NWSC won the coveted Water Utility of the Year Award for the third . . .
“Drought has exposed the poor, or lack of, water management” “The drought that has impacted many regions within South Africa for a considerable length of time now has exposed the poor, or lack of, water management (monitoring and control) ability of many water institutions, as well as the difficulties and inability of municipalities and their consumers to be able to reduce their consumption when required” says Steve Gillham, General Manager: Engineering and Scientific Services, Umgeni Water and advisory board member of African Utility Week, the leading annual conference and exhibition with a strong focus on water management, taking place in Cape Town in May. He adds: “there are many hard lessons being learnt by the affected water institutions that need to be shared and documented to improve the response for future drought events. Responses have come from national, provincial, water boards and municipalities to dry to address the situation. Certain initiatives have been more effective than others”. Water becoming scarce commodity It may come as a surprise to some that globally South Africa is classified as a water-stressed country, with annual rainfall of about 492 millimetres compared to other areas with around 985 millimetres. The Western Cape is in a situation where the threat of water shedding is looming and currently on high alert with level 3B water restrictions. “This vital resource needs our help!“ says Nicolette Pombo-van Zyl, editor of ESI-Africa, a leading power and water trade publication and session chair at African Utility Week, “and considering that water is increasingly becoming a scarce commodity, time has come for us to become extra mindful of our water usage as a way of life going forward, even after the restrictions are lifted in the future.” She explains: “the question to ask yourself is what your household and company are using potable water resources on. We were in a similar situation with electricity load shedding and rallied . . .
“Getting recognition in this competitive expo industry is immensely rewarding” Leading Cape Town-based trade exhibition and conference organiser Spintelligent has won four major awards at the *ROAR Organiser and Exhibitor Awards in Johannesburg which honour excellence in the exhibition and events industry on the continent. The awards were organised jointly by the Association of African Exhibition Organisers (AAXO) and the Exhibition & Event Association of Southern Africa (EXSA). *ROAR = Respect, Opportunities, Achievement, Recognition African Utility Week, Spintelligent’s flagship energy event for the last 17 years, was the joint winner in the Best Trade Exhibition 6001-12000 sqm category, sharing the honours with the World Travel Market. Agritech Expo Zambia won two awards: for Best Trade & Consumer Exhibition 12000+ sqm and for Distinction in Social Responsibility Award. The African Real Estate & Infrastructure Summit, which was a launch event for the company in 2016, won the Best Confex category. The DRC Mining Week was also a finalist in the Social Responsibility category. “It was a clean sweep for Spintelligent and I could not be prouder of our teams”, says an excited Spintelligent MD David Ashdown. “We work incredibly hard to produce successful, relevant and innovative events for our clients in exciting industries such as energy, agriculture and mining. To also get recognition from our peers in this competitive expo industry is immensely rewarding as it inspires us to work even harder and to take things up a notch every year.” He adds: “the AAXO ROAR Awards honoured both long-standing events such as African Utility Week, to a more recent project such as Agritech Expo as well as a launch show, African Real Estate & Infrastructure Summit, which is part of our new property portfolio. It shows that we are still on the right track, while also receiving the nod of approval for our newer initiatives.” ROAR Awards - Best Trade . . .
African Utility Week to gather 7000+ power professionals in Cape Town “Youth unemployment on the continent is a major epidemic and internship opportunities are an amazing solution to help maximize human capital development on the continent” says Daniel Antwi, co-founder of the Africa Internship Academy (AIA) that will launch its Young Energy and Power Professionals (YEPP) at this year’s African Utility Week in Cape Town in May. Says Daniel: “quite a number of employers have argued that skills constraint has been a major contributing factor to youth unemployment. Again, many young graduates find it very difficult to move out and become job makers in the market. Therefore, Africa Internship Academy stands to facilitate successful transition from academia to industry by ensuring that the skills of youth are honed early enough to match the labour market demands.” Africa Internship Academy has already begun its monthly gatherings in Ghana and is looking to roll out more offices in many African cities by end of the first half of 2017. “So far, all our fellows have secured amazing internship opportunities from great organisations in Africa,” Daniel states, “and Ecobank Ghana requested to have all fellows in Ghana to intern with them, if possible.” He adds: “also, together with the organisers of African Utility Week, we will be launching the Young Energy and Power Professionals Network (YEPP) which will be a network of ambitious graduates who wish to contribute to solving African’s power and energy issues.” Young people in the utility sector YEPP will bring together graduates who want to learn from each other, access thought leadership, conduct research to broaden their understanding of power and energy issues, raise funding for future solutions and further their career ambitions. “There is a lot of room for young people in the utility sector as long as they get the right skills to navigate” says AIA’s Daniel. According to Daniel, internships are a win-win . . .
“The power and energy landscape in Africa is undergoing significant change” says Evan Schiff, African Utility Week event director, adding that current trends include “the availability of private investment for power and energy projects, the fast development of energy storage, renewable energy is becoming cheaper, gas that is an increasingly attractive mode of power generation in Africa, and that in the next 10 years, nuclear will become an increasingly important mode of base-load power generation.” The investment, trade and development opportunities in the sub-Saharan Africa’s electricity sector are estimated at $835 billion of capital investment, $490 billion for generation capacity and $345 billion for infrastructure. Real world doers share their expertise The 17th annual African Utility Week is the leading conference and trade exhibition for African power, energy and water professionals and takes place from 16-18 May 2017 at the CTICC in Cape Town. The event will gather over 7000 decision makers from more than 40 countries to source the latest solutions and meet over 300 suppliers. Along with multiple side events and numerous networking functions the event also boasts a seven track conference with over 300 expert speakers. The conference programme will once again address the latest challenges, developments and opportunities in the power and water sectors: ranging from generation, T&D, metering, technology and water. These include two exclusive plenary keynote sessions featuring the most sought-after international speakers. Says Evan: “we are known for consistently gathering a group of industry elite real world doers who share their expertise from grid to socket, best practices for effective power and water supply. Once again, we will not disappoint.” KPMG is diamond sponsor Already leading global advisory firm KPMG has confirmed that it is returning to African Utility Week, this time as its exclusive diamond sponsorship. “KPMG’s commitment . . .
“The first African Real Estate & Infrastructure Summit in Cape Town provided an innovative space for leading built environment professionals to engage with experts, projects, investors and practitioners from all over the continent. We are confident that the summit will grow to become the leading meeting point of the real estate and infrastructure industries in Africa." This is according to Tim Harris, CEO of Wesgro, who was a speaker and session facilitator at the summit. More than 300 sector experts gathered for the inaugural two-day summit earlier this month with interactive sessions that focused on key case studies of visionary city planning, investment opportunities in the commercial and residential real estate sectors across the continent, the African city of the future and the challenges of urbanisation. Innovative development projects from Cape Town, Johannesburg, Addis Ababa, Kigali, Lusaka, Kampala and the Taparura project in Tunisia were showcased. A key finding of the conference was that Africa’s cities are facing an urban ‘polycrisis’ and that there is a need for a new urban agenda and an opportunity for innovative solutions to address urbanisation challenges. Expert speaker highlights at the African Real Estate & Infrastructure Summit included: • “Africa is on the brink of great change. It is the fastest urbanising region in the world, with around 400 million people expected to migrate from rural areas to cities by 2050. As more and more people move to our cities in search of a better life, it is critical that we provide effective and sustainable infrastructure to meet their needs.” - Alderman Ian Neilson, City of Cape Town’s Executive Deputy Mayor • “New forms of urban planning in African cities seem to be dedicated to transforming them into replicas of Dubai, Shanghai and Singapore. The main challenge of the real estate sector on the continent currently is to find approaches to real estate development which are not only for the . . .
Cape Town Summit to gather developers, investors and planners “The Voortrekker Road Corridor offers a unique opportunity to invest in the urban core of Cape Town in one of its most important transit-oriented development corridors, taking advantage of the central location and extensive public transport infrastructure” – this is according to Councillor Johan van der Merwe, the City of Cape Town’s Mayoral Committee Member for Energy, Environmental and Spatial Planning. The City of Cape Town will present its Voortrekker Road Corridor: Strategy and Investment Plan at the upcoming African Real Estate & Infrastructure Summit at the Mother City’s CTICC from 2-3 November. The presentation, which is open to industry professionals, forms part of an exciting line-up of high-level representatives from leading African cities, including Cape Town, Johannesburg, Nairobi, Dar es Salaam, Lusaka and Kampala, who will showcase the investment and development opportunities offered by their cities’ Urban Development Plans or specific major infrastructure projects. “The City has spent in excess of R300-million on infrastructure investments” says Councillor van der Merwe, “which are directly serving the corridor and significantly more on bulk infrastructure that contributes towards the corridor. One of the key infrastructure investments that we are making is providing financing to PRASA to undertake a study to develop a plan of improvements/upgrades to this important rail corridor.” He foresees the main challenges to be “urban management, which includes crime, grime and maintenance, which is a key issue within the corridor. Solving this challenge is key to attracting investors to the area. We see the solution to this challenge emanating from the continuation and further development of partnerships between the City, the Greater Tygerberg Partnership, city improvement districts, land owners, business operators, civic organisations and residents. In addition to this partnership . . .