“Whether you want to call it load-shedding, a blackout, load-shifting or load sharing, remember that this affects everyone. We are in this together so join your neighbourhood Whatsapp or Facebook group to stay informed.” So says Nicolette Pombo-van Zyl, editor ESI Africa, a leading energy industry journal.
Off the grid
“It is not really viable at this stage for the average suburban household to go completely off the grid to avoid the effects of load-shedding” says Mrs Pombo-van Zyl, adding “but, it is possible to develop a back-up plan for when the grid goes down. The ideal option is solar PV but this requires an investment, which will eventually pay off in the long run. One could just invest in a solar water heater system or take the route of rooftop solar with a battery storage unit.”
“Back-up generators are also an option, especially for businesses although they can be noisy and cumbersome to set up and prove dangerous for people not familiar with this type of equipment. Another off-grid option is to change to gas for cooking and lighting.”
She continues: “some people may think that they are experiencing load-shedding when in actual fact their main has tripped. Invest in battery-operated torches and lighting and regularly check the batteries. Ensure that your mobile phones are charged. Also be more vigilant when driving as a lot of traffic lights are affected.”
ESI Africa at African Utility Week
The potential of renewable energy sources such as solar, storage solutions and mini-grid generation projects are some of the exciting focus areas at African Utility Week and POWERGEN Africa taking place from 14-16 May in Cape Town. The South African Minister of Energy, Honourable Jeff Radebe, is heading up a stellar line up of expert speakers and will once again deliver the opening ministerial address on 14 May. The 19th edition of this flagship conference and exhibition is expected to attract more than 10 000 energy and water professionals this year.
ESI Africa is the longstanding host publication of the event and also has an onsite studio on the expo floor to interview dozens of experts for its online portal. Says ESI Africa’s editor Nicolette Pombo-van Zyl: “this annual event is marked in my diary as a ‘must-attend’ to meet with industry stalwarts and the up-and-coming young leaders. I’m keenly looking forward to three intense days of on-point conversations around what’s happening in the industry, what to expect in the coming year, and the solutions driving development. Also, as a moderator for one of the conference sessions, I’m excited by the prospect of debating risks and opportunities in a way that could very well deliver a primed solution to the attending delegates who have travelled from far and wide.”
She continues: “it’s going to be another superb year for the ESI Africa team as our bumper issue of the journal is being distributed in the delegate bags and VIP areas. As the official host publication, ESI Africa is the only media house with an onsite studio where on-camera interviews will be conducted over the three days of African Utility Week & POWERGEN Africa. Another activity is our sought-after roving camera team who will be visiting expo booths that have pre-booked an interview with us.”
The ESI Africa television studio is strategically positioned on the exhibition floor for easy access, says Nicolette: “this is where our team of editors will conduct professional on-camera interviews with conference speakers, VIP guests, and profiled attendees to reap their industry knowledge for our readers’ benefit.
“You can also rely on the editorial team to keep you posted on what’s happening as they will be reporting live from the conference sessions using the ESI Africa social media channels and website. We’re interested in connecting with as many people as possible, so look out for the team at the networking sessions, awards gala, and knowledge hubs.”
African Utility Week and POWERGEN Africa is the flagship energy event organised by Spintelligent, a multi-award-winning Cape Town-based exhibition and conference producer across the continent in the energy, infrastructure, mining and agriculture sectors. Other well-known events by Spintelligent include Future Energy East Africa, Future Energy Nigeria, the Utility CEO Forums, Agritech Expo Zambia, Nigeria Mining Week and DRC Mining Week. Spintelligent is part of the UK-based Clarion Events Group and African Utility Week and POWERGEN Africa form part of Clarion Energy, which runs over 40 events that cover the oil, gas, power and energy sectors, making it one of Clarion Events’ largest portfolios.
Dates for African Utility Week and POWERGEN Africa:
Conference and expo: 14-16 May 2019
Site visits: 17 May 2019
Location: CTICC, Cape Town, South Africa