By participating in B2B meetings at the renowned South African international trade fair, SMEs in the water & power utility sector can benefit from EU support. This opportunity will help them expand their businesses abroad. The next Business Beyond Borders business connections event will take place in Cape Town (South Africa) at African Utility Week (AUW), a leading water and power utility trade fair, in May 2017. Business Beyond Borders (BBB) is a European Commission initiative to help EU businesses, in particular Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and Clusters, operate internationally with the ultimate goal of increasing economic growth within and outside Europe. A series of business connections events are being organised to bring together SMEs and representatives from relevant clusters, with potential trading partners from Europe and abroad with the aim of assisting businesses to access new international markets. After a first successful business connections session at the Genera fair, which took place in the beginning of March in Madrid, BBB turns its attention to the biggest trade fair on the African continent. Hosting thousands of visitors each other, AUW is known for a strong representation of EU companies at the event, hosting national pavilions for Denmark, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Belgium and Czech Republic. Welcoming the upcoming BBB event, Commissioner Karmenu Vella said “By helping EU green SMEs operate internationally and by promoting green partnerships in target sectors, this Business Beyond Borders (BBB) business connections event at African Utility Week will help preserve our natural resources, promote clean energy and drive growth through a circular economy.” Thanks to the large network of partners and support entities, a unique package is being made available to businesses across the world in the water and power utility sector wishing to take part in AUW as members of the Business Beyond Borders delegation: . . .
A new World Bank study presents a sobering assessment of the financial health of electricity utilities in Sub-Saharan Africa, and suggests how utilities can be profitable while extending affordable services for the poor. “A central but under-reported issue on the movement to reach universal access is the financial health of electricity utilities. Less than half of utilities cover operating expenditures while several countries lose in excess of US$0.25 per kWh sold. In this context, it will be difficult for utilities to maintain existing assets, let alone facilitate the expansion needed to reach universal access goals,” said Lucio Monari, Director, Energy and Extractive Global Practice at the World Bank. Mr Monari will address the Utility CEO Forum at the upcoming African Utility Week in Cape Town from 16-18 May and present results of a recent World Bank study: “Making Power Affordable for Africa and Viable for Its Utilities”. The study looked at utility financial statements and power tariffs in more than 40 countries, and spending data in household surveys for 22 countries. “It remains surprisingly difficult to get basic bread-and-butter data such as tariff schedules, operational performance data, and financial statements. We focused heavily on raw data collection directly from Sub-Saharan utilities. This study’s strength is that it distils lessons from dozens of countries. We hope it will help make Africa’s power sector financially sustainable and advance the goal of universal access to electricity,” Mr Monari explained. Key messages from the report suggest several ways of recovering the cost of supply and making electricity affordable: One third of countries may become financially viable through improving operational efficiency. It is almost certain that increasing tariffs will be needed in the remaining two-thirds of the countries studied. Individual meters in poor households can help utilities target cross-subsidies better. Installing . . .
The award-winning African Utility Week has welcomed back a longstanding supporter, the global energy giant Shell, who will be a platinum sponsor again at the conference and exhibition from 16-18 May in Cape Town. 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 numerous networking functions the event also boasts a five track conference with over 300 expert speakers. The conference programme will address the latest challenges, developments and opportunities in the power and water sectors: ranging from generation, T&D, metering, technology and water. “Choosing the right oil is essential” “We are delighted to return for the third time as a platinum sponsor for African Utility Week,” says Tendani Ndwamise, Shell Lubes Direct Sector B2B Marketer at Shell South Africa. She continues: “in addition to hosting a booth with experts from our global and local business, we are proud to announce Dr. Peter Smith as a speaker for the event. He has over thirty years’ experience in the development of lubricants for use in the sector and will talk about how choosing the right oil is essential in meeting the challenges of the industry, both now and in the future.” According to Tendani the main challenges currently in the industry are: ”providing sustainable power supply to the population, with aging infrastructure. This in turn leads to the challenge of lowering costs to produce, distribute and transmit power for our customers. Shell aims to help its customers with sustainable lower total cost of ownership of their assets, through Shell’s sector expertise and industry knowledge in addition to our technology-leading products.” She adds: “In the last five years, Shell has launched two new ranges of products for the power sector – Shell Diala S4 for use in transformers and Shell Turbo S4, our premium turbine oil range. . . .
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 . . .
An estimated 600 million people in Africa live without access to electricity, the majority of which are in remote communities; requiring major capital expenditure and time to get connected to the grid. The role of the private sector is more and more important in reaching the goal of giving people access to basic energy services. This is why Energy Revolution Africa 2017 has identified mini grids and new technologies as integral topics in their programme for the co-located event at African Utility Week at the CTICC from 16 to 18 May. Energy Revolution Africa 2017 will bring insights from private and public sector experts involved in mini grid projects across Africa as part of the three-day strategic programme focused on renewable energy and community scale projects. Andrew Tonto Barfour, project coordinator for Ghana’s Ministry of Power, Benon Bena, head of off-grid renewable energy at the Rural Electrification Agency of Uganda and Faruk Yusuf Yabo, Deputy Director of the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing are among the speakers who will discuss mini and micro grid projects that are currently underway and that are anticipated for the future. This will include discussions about the development of mini grids through public and private partnerships, including communities, and how government policy is accelerating this development. On Wednesday, 17 May, the focus will be on how businesses, governments, communities and households can benefit from an investment in energy efficiency. A case study of South Africa’s National Business Initiative around tax incentives for energy efficiency will be presented by: Karel Steyn, Senior Consultant on Energy Performance Verification at Eskom Barry Bredenkamp, General Manager, Energy Efficiency and Corporate Communications at the South African National Energy Development Institute (SANEDI). Other speakers and topics on the programme for 17 May include: Werner van Antwerpen of Growthpoint . . .
Energy Revolution Africa 2017 is hosted for the first time in Africa as a co-located event of African Utility Week. With a focus on community scale projects, it will provide a dynamic meeting place for solution providers, consultants, renewable energy producers and the African and global energy minds of the future. The programme includes a three-day Energy Revolution Africa strategic programme as part of the sessions, three days of focused Continuing Professional Development (CPD) accredited technology workshops and case studies, freely available on the exhibition floor, real-life project experience and exhibitions by over 60 service and solution providers. CLICK HERE to submit your press release to MyPR.co.za. . . .
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 . . .