#10Best Blog Posts for the year

Leads 2 Business : #10BEST

 

So its roundup time. End of year contemplation combined with a healthy amount of mayhem. But as we close off and tie up all the loose ends in a pretty bow, I wanted to present you with a neat package of all the best the year has had to offer. Well, strictly speaking, the 10 best blog posts we have had to date (which trickles just over a year) voted by your foot traffic.

 

Without further ado…

 

  1. Wanting to save resources? Here are some top tips – “Ways to reduce your Carbon Footprint
  2. Looking for a means to getting your tender on in a better manner?  Look no further than “Is there Value in attending Tendering Workshops?
  3. Keeping our country pristine is not easy.  But being able to do something about our resources is priceless. The follow up to a popular post with local news “Too close to Home! What the frack!”
  4. You have heard about the growth of … well almost everything… in Africa. Get some fact here “Developing Africa….is Africa the new China?
  5. Covering industry exhibitions as we visited a popular “Cape Construction Expo
  6. Our campaign to create awareness of the desperate plight of our black rhino in Southern Africa – “Heart of a Ranger
  7. The story of our team trip to Timbavati Private Nature Reserve to film the Heart of a Ranger video – “Rhino dreaming in Timbavati
  8. Taking a look at our country and it’s colourful journey is Sherina Swart with “South Africa … just how far have we come?”
  9. Looking around us and following the trends “Trends in Africa
  10. Some inspiration from history with our witty Claire Donaldson’s “Ancient Inspiration for Modern Motivation

 

 

Now that you have had your fill of a good combination of facts and humour, I would also like to take this opportunity to wish you well for a fantastic festive season and peaceful New Year. Our offices will be closing on the 15th December and re-opening on the 6 January 2016.

 

Until then, have a wonderful break and hopefully rest.

 

 

 

 

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About Carmen Barends

Social Media adventurer exploring new frontiers and learning how to survive. Tongue in cheek and mischief are the order of any good day topped with a sprinkling of laughter.

Highlights of 2015

 

Leads 2 Business : Highlight reel

 

It is always inspiring to learn about developments that are taking place in our country, especially those developments that aim to uplift communities by providing necessary infrastructure, and that have the community’s best interests at heart. Also many projects are using innovative technologies in construction which will help to reduce negative impacts on the environment, which is something of great importance. There are also other large and exciting developments to look forward to, some of which will change landscapes forever. Many developments have progressed throughout 2015. Some highlights, which cover developments across all nine provinces over 11 months of the year, are mentioned below:

 

January

 

February

  • In February, The Green Point Athletics Stadium was officially opened, after a two year delay. The stadium boasts state-of-the-art facilities, such as a cobalt blue tartan track.

 

March

  • March contained an abundance of positive construction news, completing the first quarter of 2015 on an exceptionally high note.
  • The Youth in Construction Expo took place at the Sci-Bono Discovery Centre in Johannesburg from 2 – 6 March 2015. The focus of this Expo is to provide high-school learners with information on the many different career choices that are available in the construction industry.
  • Also in the first week of March, the Steyn City development was launched. Steyn City is a huge mixed-use development and is the largest construction project to take place in Gauteng in many years, after Waterfall in Midrand.
  • The Coega Development Corporation made an announcement early in March that a notice for an Environmental Impact Assessment would be issued for the possible development of a cargo airport and an aeronautical or aerospace industrial cluster in the Coega Industrial Development Zone.
  • A sod turning ceremony took place towards the end of March 2015, for Phase 1 (Roosendaal) of the massive Delft integrated housing project. The four phases of the development are: Roosendaal; The Hague (Phase 1); Eindhoven and The Hague (Phase 2). This development will improve the living conditions of many of the area’s residents.
  • The KwaDukuza Municipality approved the site development plans for the Ballito Junction mega mall (PPA’s 14139 and 14140) . The existing shopping centre will be expanded to more than six times its current size.
  • After much anticipation, Unit 6 at Medupi power station in Limpopo finally began to produce power, marking new beginnings.

 

April

  • The Robert Clarke Water Treatment Plant at Matla Coal Mine in Mpumalanga was launched in April, and is designed to alleviate water storage constraints, make sure mineworkers are safe and protect natural water resources.

May

  • On the technological front, students from New York have developed the M-App. M-App is “a real-time tool that monitors and evaluates road construction projects to maximize service delivery and root out corruption”.
  • An announcement was made in May that an International Convention Centre will be built in Rustenburg.

 

June

  • The V&A Waterfront was named the preferred bidder for the new luxury cruise terminal in Cape Town.
  • Thavhani Property Investments and the Thulamela Municipality announced the transfer of the land on which the Thavhani Mall (PPA’s 13674 and 13675 ) will be constructed.

 

July

  • Construction of Phase 2 of Central Square in Sandton (PPA’s 10792, 10793 and 10794) commenced in July, and will comprise a 12-storey apartment block.

 

August

  • A launch and ribbon cutting ceremony took place in August, for the construction of Sizabantu Piping System Manufacturing Plant. The SPS Manufacturing Plant is the first plant to be built as part the RBIDZ’s Phase 1A.
  • A sod turning ceremony, to mark the official commencement of the Thavhani Mall in Limpopo, took place in August.
  • A Tender for the design and construction of a solar-powered plant was issued by Telkom. The proposed solar plant will form part of Telkom’s Centralised Energy Centre Project at Telkom Park in Pretoria, and will eventually allow Telkom to be electrically fully self-reliant.
  • A briefing session took place in August for a Tender that was issued by Transnet National Ports Authority, for a cruise terminal facility at A and B Berths in the Port of Durban.
  • Construction commenced on the Botshabelo Shopping Centre in the Free State.

 

September

  • This is not exactly a highlight in terms of construction in particular, but definitely in terms of educating people about the natural environment in which construction takes place in. With the start of a very warm Spring season and the location of some construction in close proximity to forest areas, a very large African Rock Python, measuring 3.8 metres in length and weighing in at 31 kilograms, was found at a construction site at Izinga Park in Umhlanga in September! Thankfully, the snake was not harmed, but instead a snake removal company was called in to remove and relocate the reptile. Applause for all involved!

 

October

  • Sanral received awards for both the Umgeni Road Interchange and the Candella Road Project. The Candella Road Project forms part of Sanral’s “green roads” initiative. This initiative aims to reduce the impact that road construction has on the environment. The innovative design of the Candella Road Project also increases skid resistance. The bridges in the Umgeni Road project were built using an innovation construction method, known as incremental launch.
  • During the month of October, it was announced that there are plans to revamp the former Victoria Embankment, to be ready for the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
    Another announcement made in October, was that of the major R1.1 billion revamp on the cards for The Pavilion shopping Centre in Westville (PPA’s 16674, 16675 and 17164) , near Durban.

 

November

  • During this month of November, it has been reported that the VW PeoplePavilion, a multi-purpose complex for Volkswagen which is located in Uitenhage and was completed in 2013, received an award from the Eastern Cape Institute of Architects. The building was recognized as one of the leading architectural buildings in the Eastern Cape.

 

December

  • December is fast approaching, and with the builders’ shutdown period looming, many developments are nearing completion. I am sure that there will be many positive news stories reporting on the completion of exciting new developments.

 

 

I hope you enjoy many of the new or upgraded facilities that may be opening in your area during the festive season!

Here’s to all the new and exciting developments that will be taking place in the year ahead. Bring on 2016!

 

 

 

 

Sources:
http://www.timeslive.co.za/local/2015/01/08/construction-starts-on-new-gauteng-city
http://www.bdlive.co.za/business/trade/2015/01/26/transnet-ports-announces-r9.65bn-in-infrastructure-projects-at-saldanha
http://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/western-cape/green-point-athletics-stadium-opens-1.1820739#.Vj8SLDaheUk
http://connect.citizen.co.za/2020/construction-made-cool/
http://www.sacommercialpropnews.co.za/south-africa-provincial-news/eastern-cape-commercial-property/7180-coega-plan-under-way-for-cargo-airport.html
http://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/western-cape/sod-turned-for-new-cape-housing-project-1.1839617#.Vj8UPzaheUk
http://www.sacommercialpropnews.co.za/business-specialties/property-construction-development/7162-steyn-city-raises-mixed-use-development-to-new-heights.html

Medupi power station finally starts to produce electricity


http://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/western-cape/work-begins-on-new-myciti-routes-1.1839325#.Vj8UbTaheUk

Ballito Junction R1.4 bn mega mall gets green light from KDM


http://www.miningweekly.com/article/exxaro-unveils-r250m-water-treatment-plant-at-matla-coal-mine-2015-04-09
http://www.iol.co.za/news/politics/r4-6bn-for-nelson-mandela-bay-housing-1.1852542#.Vj8WFzaheUk

Anti-corruption app takes aim at crooked construction thieves


http://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/north-west/r683m-icc-planned-for-rustenburg-1.1863607#.Vj8X-zaheUk
http://www.eprop.co.za/commercial-property-news/item/18886-land-transfer-brings-thulamela-s-new-r950m-thavhani-mall-development-a-step-closer.html
http://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/gauteng/n14-highway-set-for-r295m-upgrade-1.1885723#.Vj8bOzaheUk
http://www.iol.co.za/business/news/next-phase-of-sandton-development-begins-1.1889295#.Vj8bUzaheUk
http://pressoffice.mgafrica.com/richardsbayindustrialdevelopmentzone/PressRelease.php?StoryID=260285
http://www.eprop.co.za/commercial-property-news/item/19059-sod-turning-ceremony-marks-the-start-of-construction-on-limpopo-s-new-r1bn-thavhani-mall.html

Telkom to build a 3MW solar plant in Pretoria


http://traveller24.news24.com/Explore/SAHolidayGuide/Durban-a-step-closer-to-its-new-cruise-terminal-20150814
http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/31kg-python-found-at-KZN-construction-site-20150917
http://www.iol.co.za/travel/south-africa/kwazulu-natal/kzn-eyes-another-tourist-paradise-1.1929556#.Vj9mJGaheUk
http://pressoffice.mg.co.za/sanral/PressRelease.php?StoryID=262171
http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/Local/UD-News/VW-PeoplePavilion-wins-architectural-award-20151104

Two new massive solar plants for SA

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About Bianca Warwick

I had the privilege of joining the Leads 2 Business content team in January 2012. I work in the exciting Projects department, following the progress of construction developments in KwaZulu-Natal and the Free State.

Too close to home! What the Frack!

So here I am again, it is almost exactly a year since my last Fracking blog entitled “What the Frack”. Although I left the blog wide open for a follow up, I was secretly hoping we would never get there….. and I never imagined it would be involving a town I spent so much of my teenage years in.

For those of you who are not familiar as to what exactly fracking is, I urge you to take a look at my last blog and get all the facts so you can make an informed decision as to which side of the fence you sit.
To give you a brief catch up on where the process is so far, I thought it would only be fair to start with a background on the “who & where”, as this is what will be affected first and fore most.

Matatiele / Matat is located in the Eastern Cape, though it didn’t start there….No it didn’t move! Lol! However In 2005, the municipality was moved from the KwaZulu-Natal province to the Eastern Cape.
Matat is located at the foothills of the magnificent Drakensberg and borders Lesotho.

 

DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

Now, the proposed area for this Fracking is not some arid land in the middle of nowhere. It is a community, a community who is facing the terrifying prospect of being fracked in the future.

And while the affected area itself seems small to outside folk, it is not! It is host to towns folk, farming folk and a large rural community. It is large in heritage, culture and beauty. It’s primary economic activity is derived from cattle farming, but has a healthy agricultural industry too. This area stands to lose a lot as it is now under threat by an international company proposing exploration with the possibility of having hydraulic fracturing ripping through 120 000 ha of land including a total of 240 farms!Matat2

Matat5 Matat4 Matat3

 

 

However people are not sitting back. It has been amazing to do the research for this blog, finding such a large outcry from an array of environmental groups and community members. I came across this response to the bid and I found it to be powerful and inspiring and absolutely made me want to be part of the solution. Take a look. Their concerns are for good reason – some of the very worrying factors surrounding their concerns is the impact on the land and its water. A lot of people don’t know this, but Matat suffers from stressed water supply in the winter months and their water supplies over 1 million downstream users. So the concern of contamination or depletion is a very real one.

There are health concerns too, both for human and herds alike, so while fracking may mean money for our economy at large, what does it mean for our local farmers and their families and the farm worker’s family? The farms themselves will undergo changes resulting in loss, if exploration to this land goes forward, there will be 10 core boreholes drilled, the land will then be home to water borehole rigs, water tanks, pumps, trailers, farm trucks, compressors, caravans etc.all brought on by new access roads tearing through the land, each operation area will be +-1000m2.

 

FA_delete_natural-gas-rig-pennsylvania-photo

 

 

And…. here is the kicker! Very little local jobs!!! Yes the bulk of the work force will be contracted out! So who is really benefiting here?

Now in no way have I covered the severity of the situation, but I thought before I get ahead of myself I should go through the process and what we know for sure thus far, so here are some points to date.

  • The Parent company looking to explore the possibility of fracking in the Eastern Cape is Rhino Resources, their local subsidiary is called Rhino Oil and Gas Exploration South Africa (Pty) Ltd.
  • Rhino Oil and Gas Exploration South Africa (Pty) Ltd have logged an application for exploration rights with Petroleum Agency South Africa.
  • The Proposed exploration time is for a total of 3 years.
  • PASA has to approve the application before any exploration can take place in terms of the Environmental Management act, 107 of 1998.
  • SLR Consulting (Africa) (Pty) Ltd (SLR) has been appointed by Rhino Oil and Gas Exploration South Africa (Pty) Ltd to undertake the environmental assessment process.
  • A draft scoping report made available to IAP (Interested and affected parties)
  • Interested and affected parties had until the 10 October 2015 to submit their concerns.

So What’s Next?

  • From January to June 2016 the EIA and EMP (Environmental Management Programme) will take place and once again be made available to the IAPs.
  • Public meetings will be held and then all the reports and concerns will be sent on to the decision makers, PASA.

I have attached the initial report SLR Consulting has done and what I found interesting and hopeful was what they said in their motivation for the exploration project, and I quote:

“Petroleum products remain a vital source of energy. Natural gas comprises mostly methane and is a relatively clean, environmentally friendly form of energy. It can be used to generate electricity or provide heat for domestic and industrial purposes. Once extracted, gas can be easily contained, transported and safely used in many applications. The type of downstream use is entirely dependent on the commercial scale of the resource.”

Now I’m not sure if I’m reading too much into this but their motivation was 4 and a bit lines long, where the list of Potential Environmental Impacts spreads down the whole page, with concerns arranging from, Farm Safety, Farm Infrastructure, Biodiversity, Surface and Ground Water, Air, Noise and that is just to mention a few. Please go take a look at the full report.

I know for sure which side of the fence I sit on and it’s the side where we look after the beautiful country we have, and yes, I know our Country is in economic trouble, but after all is said and done…. we can’t drink money!
Now while my blog has been centered around the possible fracking in Matatiele, don’t for one minute think you are safe.

It will seem that KZN Midlands has been deemed a very desirable fracking ground!

 

frack water02

The fracking belt in KZN:

  • Lies against the Drakensberg (among other areas) – the birthplace of our rivers
  • Crosses three major rivers – the Tugela, the uMngeni and the uMkomaas. The Greater uMngeni River Catchment is of strategic significance to South Africa as it supports the third largest economic hub in the country, namely the City of Durban, through the supply of water necessary to deliver water and sanitation services for social and economic needs.
  • Below are two maps which reflect a little more detail in terms of the Rhino Gas Exploration area affected HDLA (HowickLand Owners Association) & NRLA (Nottingham Road Land Owners Association) areas. Whilst not reflected on the map, the Hilton College area, Umgeni Valley, Karkloof, Mt Gilboa, Rietvlei and Mt West areas will also be included.

 

Rhino 291 ER_South west boundary Rhino 291 ER_South west boundary2

 

 

49_1_InfoGraphic_TWv1-1

The USA has already started cancelling fracking projects as water supplies in the areas dwindle! Can KZN really afford to spare the water we have? I say this as we go through one of our driest spells, as we speak, restrictions already imposed in some areas!

As we speak, currently, 19 percent of the rural population lacks access to a reliable water supply and 33 percent do not have basic sanitation services. While rural citizens suffer the most, over 26 percent of all schools (urban or rural), and 45 percent of clinics, have no water access either.

Just a thought….Should getting fresh drinking water to every person in our country not be government priority before we start exploiting the water we have?

Risks and Concerns of Fracking
Contamination of groundwater
Methane pollution and its impact on climate change
Air pollution impacts
Exposure to toxic chemicals
Blow-outs due to gas explosion
Waste disposal
Large volume water use in water-deficient regions
Fracking-induced earthquakes
Workplace safety
Infrastructure degradation

 

 

More needs to be done, our Government needs to know that it is no longer OK for them to leave our Country vulnerable to International land Vultures!
We need to feel protected, we will not sit by and not be heard!

So If you to feel the same, then head over and sign the PETITION and show your support, not only to a small community you may have never heard of but to our Country in general.
Say No to Fracking;)!!!

stopfracking2

frackig kzn

 

I hope you have enjoyed my blog today, but more importantly I hope I have inspired some of you to do something about the impending problem we face with these proposals to frack our beautiful country.

And while you are signing the petition, please can you take a look at these worthy causes and show them your support too as they stand up against fracking in our country.
https://www.facebook.com/happyearthforum?ref=nf
http://www.wessa.org.za/what-we-do/environmental-governance.htm
https://mpophomeniconservationgroup.wordpress.com/mnandi/
http://enviros.co.za/
https://midlandsconservanciesforum.wordpress.com/tag/fracking/

https://www.facebook.com/CentreEnvironmentalRights

http://www.midlandsconservancies.org.za/prpagefracking.php

 

Sources:
http://www.iol.co.za/business/news/new-oil-exploration-bid-sparks-fear-1.1920822#.ViT0MCsYHtJ
http://www.moneyweb.co.za/news-fast-news/rhino-oil-seeks-approval-for-pre-fracking-tests/
Fracking – In the Midlands?
http://12.000.scripts.mit.edu/mission2017/case-studies/water-access-in-south-africa/

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About Sherina Shawe

"You have to do everything you can, you have to work your hardest, and if you do, if you stay positive, you have a shot at a silver lining." from: Silver Linings Playbook.

Hydroelectric Plants

Hydroelectricity is the term referring to electricity generated by hydropower; the production of electrical power through the use of the gravitational force of falling or flowing water. It is the most widely used form of renewable energy, accounting for 16 percent of global electricity generation – 3,427 terawatt hours of electricity production in 2010, and is expected to increase about 3.1% each year for the next 25 years. Hydropower is produced in 150 countries, with the Asia – Pacific region generating 32 percent of global hydropower in 2010.
It is also a flexible source of electricity since the amount produced by the station can be changed up or down very quickly to adapt to changing energy demands. However, damming interrupts the flow of rivers and can harm local ecosystems, and building large dams and reservoirs often involves displacing people and wildlife. [tweetthis]Once a hydroelectric complex is constructed, the project produces no direct waste, and has a considerably lower output level of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2) than fossil fuel powered energy plants.[/tweetthis]

 

Leads 2 Business : Hydroelectric

 

Generating methods

Conventional (dams)
Most hydroelectric power comes from the potential energy of dammed water driving a water turbine and generator. The power extracted from the water depends on the volume and on the difference in height between the source and the water’s outflow. This height difference is called the head. A large pipe (the “penstock”) delivers water from the reservoir to the turbine.

 

Pumped-storage
This method produces electricity to supply high peak demands by moving water between reservoirs at different elevations. At times of low electrical demand, the excess generation capacity is used to pump water into the higher reservoir. When the demand becomes greater, water is released back into the lower reservoir through a turbine. Pumped-storage schemes currently provide the most commercially important means of large-scale grid energy storage and improve the daily capacity factor of the generation system. Pumped storage is not an energy source, and appears as a negative number in listings.

 

Run-of-the-river
Run-of-the-river hydroelectric stations are those with small or no reservoir capacity, so that only the water coming from upstream is available for generation at that moment, and any oversupply must pass unused. A constant supply of water from a lake or existing reservoir upstream is a significant advantage in choosing sites for run-of-the-river. In the United States, run of the river hydropower could potentially provide 60,000 megawatts (80,000,000 hp) (about 13.7% of total use in 2011 if continuously available).

 

Tide
A tidal power station makes use of the daily rise and fall of ocean water due to tides; such sources are highly predictable, and if conditions permit construction of reservoirs, can also be dispatchable to generate power during high demand periods. Less common types of hydro schemes use water’s kinetic energy or undammed sources such as undershot waterwheels. Tidal power is viable in a relatively small number of locations around the world. [tweetthis]In Great Britain, there are eight sites that could be developed, which have the potential to generate 20% of the electricity used in 2012.[/tweetthis]

 

Advantages and disadvantages

Advantages

Flexibility
Hydropower is a flexible source of electricity since stations can be ramped up and down very quickly to adapt to changing energy demands. Hydro turbines have a start-up time of the order of a few minutes. It takes around 60 to 90 seconds to bring a unit from cold start-up to full load; this is much shorter than for gas turbines or steam plants. Power generation can also be decreased quickly when there is a surplus power generation. Hence the limited capacity of hydropower units is not generally used to produce base power except for vacating the flood pool or meeting downstream needs. Instead, it serves as backup for non-hydro generators.

Low power costs
The major advantage of hydroelectricity is elimination of the cost of fuel. The cost of operating a hydroelectric station is nearly immune to increases in the cost of fossil fuels such as oils, natural gas or coal, and no imports are needed.
Hydroelectric stations have long economic lives, with some plants still in service after 50–100 years. Operating labor cost is also usually low, as plants are automated and have few personnel on site during normal operation.
Where a dam serves multiple purposes, a hydroelectric station may be added with relatively low construction cost, providing a useful revenue stream to offset the costs of dam operation. Additionally, some data shows that in most countries large hydropower dams will be too costly and take too long to build to deliver a positive risk adjusted return, unless appropriate risk management measures are put in place.

Suitability for industrial applications
While many hydroelectric projects supply public electricity networks, some are created to serve specific industrial enterprises. Dedicated hydroelectric projects are often built to provide the substantial amounts of electricity needed for aluminium electrolytic plants, for example.

Suitability for Agricultural applications

Dozens of hydroelectric projects – ranging from less than one kilowatt (1kW) to several dozen megawatts (MW) – are being actively pursued by individual farmers, hospitality operators and agricultural co-operatives in all nine provinces. Small hydroelectric projects tapping into existing Department of Water Affairs and other infrastructure are having a profound impact on the profitability and sustainability of individual farmers, farming communities and agri-businesses.

Reduced CO2 emissions
Since hydroelectric dams do not burn fossil fuels, they do not directly produce carbon dioxide. While some carbon dioxide is produced during manufacture and construction of the project, this is a tiny fraction of the operating emissions of equivalent fossil-fuel electricity generation. According to studies, hydroelectricity produces the least amount of greenhouse gases and externality of any energy source. Coming in second place was wind, third was nuclear energy, and fourth was solar photovoltaic. The low greenhouse gas impact of hydroelectricity is found especially in temperate climates. Greater greenhouse gas emission impacts are found in the tropical regions because the reservoirs of power stations in tropical regions produce a larger amount of methane than those in temperate areas.

Other uses of the reservoir
Reservoirs created by hydroelectric schemes often provide facilities for water sports, and become tourist attractions themselves. In some countries, aquaculture in reservoirs is common. Multi-use installed for irrigation support agriculture with a relatively constant water supply. Large hydro dams can control floods, which would otherwise affect people living downstream of the project.

 

Disadvantages

Ecosystem damage and loss of land
Hydroelectric power stations that use dams would submerge large areas of land due to the requirement of a reservoir.
Large reservoirs associated with traditional hydroelectric power stations result in submersion of extensive areas upstream of the dams, sometimes destroying biologically rich and productive lowland and riverine valley forests, marshland and grasslands. The loss of land is often exacerbated by habitat fragmentation of surrounding areas caused by the reservoir.
Hydroelectric projects can be disruptive to surrounding aquatic ecosystems both upstream and downstream of the plant site. Generation of hydroelectric power changes the downstream river environment. Water exiting a turbine usually contains very little suspended sediment, which can lead to scouring of river beds and loss of riverbanks. Since turbine gates are often opened intermittently, rapid or even daily fluctuations in river flow are observed.

Siltation and flow shortage
When water flows it has the ability to transport particles heavier than itself downstream. This has a negative effect on dams and subsequently their power stations, particularly those on rivers or within catchment areas with high siltation. Siltation can fill a reservoir and reduce its capacity to control floods along with causing additional horizontal pressure on the upstream portion of the dam. Eventually, some reservoirs can become full of sediment and useless or over-top during a flood and fail.
Changes in the amount of river flow will correlate with the amount of energy produced by a dam. Lower river flows will reduce the amount of live storage in a reservoir therefore reducing the amount of water that can be used for hydroelectricity. The result of diminished river flow can be power shortages in areas that depend heavily on hydroelectric power. The risk of flow shortage may increase as a result of climate change.

Methane emissions (from reservoirs)
Lower positive impacts are found in the tropical regions, as it has been noted that the reservoirs of power plants in tropical regions produce substantial amounts of methane. This is due to plant material in flooded areas decaying in an anaerobic environment, and forming methane, a greenhouse gas. According to the World Commission on Dams report, where the reservoir is large compared to the generating capacity (less than 100 watts per square metre of surface area) and no clearing of the forests in the area was undertaken prior to impoundment of the reservoir, greenhouse gas emissions from the reservoir may be higher than those of a conventional oil-fired thermal generation plant.

Relocation
Another disadvantage of hydroelectric dams is the need to relocate the people living where the reservoirs are planned. In 2000, the World Commission on Dams estimated that dams had physically displaced 40-80 million people worldwide.

Failure risks
Because large conventional dammed-hydro facilities hold back large volumes of water, a failure due to poor construction, natural disasters or sabotage can be catastrophic to downriver settlements and infrastructure. Dam failures have been some of the largest man-made disasters in history.
Smaller dams and micro hydro facilities create less risk, but can form continuing hazards even after being decommissioned.

Comparison with other methods of power generation
Hydroelectricity eliminates the flue gas emissions from fossil fuel combustion, including pollutants such as sulfur dioxide, nitric oxide, carbon monoxide, dust, and mercury in the coal. Hydroelectricity also avoids the hazards of coal mining and the indirect health effects of coal emissions. Compared to nuclear power, hydroelectricity generates no nuclear waste, has none of the dangers associated with uranium mining, nor nuclear leaks.
Compared to wind farms, hydroelectricity power stations have a more predictable load factor. If the project has a storage reservoir, it can generate power when needed. Hydroelectric stations can be easily regulated to follow variations in power demand.

Power Generation in South Africa
South Africa makes use of the following forms of power generation: Coal, Gas Turbine, Hydro, Nuclear, Wind, Solar Photovoltaic, Solar CSP (Concentraded Solar Power) and Landfill Gas. The highest capacity (MW) is Coal, with Hydro coming in at third.
South Africa produces around 240,300 gigawatt-hours (865,000 TJ) electricity annually. Most of this electricity is consumed domestically, but around 12,000 gigawatt-hour is annually exported to those countries participating in the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP).

The following utilities are SAPP members: Mozambique (Electricidade de Mozambique, HCB, Motraco); Botswana (Botswana Power Co-operation); Malawi (Electricity Supply Commission of Malawi); Angola (Empresa National de Electricidade); South Africa (Eskom); Lesotho (Lesotho Electricity Corporation); Namibia (Nam Power); DRC (Societe National d’ Electricite); Swaziland (Swaziland Electricity Board); Tanzania (Tanzania Electric Supply Company); Zambia (Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation); and Zimbabwe (Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority).
South Africa supplements its electricity supply by importing around 9,000 gigawatt-hours per year from the Cahora Bassa hydroelectric generation station in Mozambique via the 1,920 MW Cahora Bassa high-voltage direct current transmission system. As of September, the exports were expected to reach full capacity as maintenance had been on-going at the dam.
Most power stations in South Africa are owned and operated by Eskom and these plants account for 95% of all the electricity produced in South Africa and 45% of all electricity produced on the African continent.

Cahora Bassa (HVDC)
Cahora-Bassa (previously spelled Cabora Bassa) is the name for an HVDC (high voltage direct current) power transmission system between the Cahora Bassa Hydroelectric Generation Station at the Cahora Bassa Dam in Mozambique, and Johannesburg, South Africa.
The Cahora Bassa system is the largest hydroelectric scheme in southern Africa with the powerhouse containing five 415 megawatts (557,000 hp) turbines. Most of the power generated is exported to South Afica, which is done by the Cahora Bassa HVDC system, a set of high voltage direct current lines. The system includes two converter stations, one at Songo in Mozambique and the other at Apollo in South Africa. There are two parallel power lines between these two stations, covering 1,400 km, of which 900 km is in Mozambican territory. These HVDC lines work at 533 kV and in Mozambique territory only have about 4,200 towers.
Currently there’s a Request for Proposal out for the Botswana – South Africa (BOSA) Transmission Project (DTA 537608) requesting a Transaction Advisor.
 

Hydroelectric in South Africa:
Tubatse Pumped Storage Scheme – Limpopo
Ingula Pumped Storage Scheme – Kwazulu-Natal

Drakensberg Pumped Storage Scheme – Free State
Palmiet Pumped Storage Scheme – Western Cape
Gariep Dam – Free State
Steenbras Power Station (Pumped Storage) – Western Cape
Vanderkloof Dam – Northern Cape
Collywobbles – Mbhashe – Eastern Cape
Ncora Dam – Eastern Cape
Sol Plaatje Power Station – Free State
Merino Power Station – Free State
Kakamas Hydro Electric – Northern Cape
Kruisvallei Hyfro – Free State
Major Hydroelectric Projects in Africa:
Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam – 6,000 MW Ethiopia 2011 – 2017 Located in the upper Nile Basin, drawing complaint from Egypt
Inga 3 Project in DRC: Building of massive hydroelectric dam in DRC set to begin in 2017

 

 

 

Sources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydroelectricity

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_power_stations_in_South_Africa
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cahora_Bassa_(HVDC)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cahora_Bassa_Dam
http://www.eskom.co.za/sites/idm/Documents/Usingwatertopoweragricultureenergyefficiency.pdf

Building of massive hydroelectric dam in DRC set to begin in 2017


http://www.energy.gov.za/files/esources/electricity/electricity_powerpool.html

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About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

Green Retrofitting

 

 

Being “Green” is fast becoming one of the most spoken about topics and the latest trend. Older Buildings and traditionally-constructed buildings are now being looked at to be converted to fit a green profile. [tweetthis]Green buildings form an important part of the generation of sustainable built environments which includes infrastructure, services, buildings and networks.[/tweetthis] Buildings are one of the main contributors to climate change and retrofitting is an opportunity to make use of resources efficiently and address climate change. In turn, this will create a healthier and more productive environment for the community.

 

What is green retrofitting?
Ret·ro·fit
ˌretrōˈfit/ verb – retrofitting
1. add (a component or accessory) to something that did not have it when manufactured.
“drivers who retrofit catalysts to older cars”
provide (something) with a component or accessory not fitted to it during manufacture

It can be defined as “Any kind of upgrade to an existing building that is wholly or partially occupied to improve energy and environmental performance, reduce water use and improve the comfort and quality of the space in terms of natural light, air quality and noise, all done in a way that is financially beneficial to the owner. Then the building and the equipment must be maintained in order to sustain the improvements over time.”

What kind of tenants are driving this “Green” movement?

While reading up about this interesting subject I came across various articles where it states that there are 3 types of different tenants that are at the forefront in demanding greener or energy efficient workplaces. The first are called the “Fortune 500 multinational corporations” who have corporate sustainability reports. The second are the “Gazelles”…. the fresh new companies that want to build green from the get go. They see sustainability and energy efficiency as a given and not as an optional extra. Finally… the Government themselves. Yep, they say that they agree with going green and are pushing the demand because it’s a requirement in their policies. They have also implemented a few of their own projects where they have assisted a few communities in going green.

What are the other key reasons / drivers for this movement?

1. Cost, Carbon and Energy Security – Eskom, enough said…! Just kidding, this Is our number 1 favourite company and don’t forget the sole provider of nearly all the economy’s electricity!! In South Africa, a continual supply of electricity is unfortunately not guaranteed. Lets face it…the dreaded load shedding is here to stay. We know Eskom is battling even though they continue to invest in increased power stations which, in turn, results in us, the people, having to pay more for electricity. And just to add fuel to the fire ;)… South Africa’s grid electricity is fueled by coal!… Coal is one of the most carbon-intensive forms of energy. The more electricity you use, the more you are polluting the air.

2. Brand and reputation – Woolworths have gone green. Their Palmyra Junction store is a wonderful example and has made use of energy-efficient LED lighting that adjust automatically to natural light. They make use of vents providing natural light from the roof, and an underfloor heating system using recycled waste heat from refrigeration. Green buildings signal a commitment to the comfort and well-being of employees, customers or other stakeholders.

3. Stakeholder demand – Impahla Clothing installed a solar photovoltaic (PV) plant to lower its carbon footprint as per the environmental requirements of PUMA, its primary customer.

4. New Trend – “Keeping up with the Joneses”. The Empire State Building and the Willis Tower (previously the Sears Tower), have been retrofitted to fit the modern green profile. Other owners and investors have now been encouraged to follow this trend.

5. Environmental – There are clear environmental benefits including reducing energy consumption, lowering demand on the power grid and decreasing greenhouse gas emission. Research has shown how retrofitting offers the most significant emission reductions in the categories of climate change and human health as well as resource impact. Being green and energy efficient has a huge impact on the environment and all living things.

6. Financial Benefits – Increased workforce productivity as well as energy and water savings.

 

Why retrofit? Why not demolish the old buildings and build new modern buildings?

South Africa has many beautiful old buildings with heritage and significance. They each hold a story and represent our past but these older buildings consume way more energy than newer modern buildings. Retrofitting them with energy-efficient technologies can have significant impact on the building sector’s overall energy profile. We have to look at ways of improving the buildings to fit the green profile yet retain their character and the history they hold so that these buildings will last and be protected, making them fit for the future.

Retrofitting is more favourable and viable than demolishing and starting over. They are also generally less risky because they involve fewer material expenses since the structural components are already in place. So it would cheaper than rebuilding.

Green retrofitting sounds daunting and seems like large scale changes etc etc. But, a green retrofit to an existing building can be as simple as installing new heating / ventilation and air-conditioning components, mounting solar panels onto the roof, or placing a bike rack outside the building for those gym enthusiasts – I mean this will reduce the carbon emissions as well as keep people fit right? 2 birds, one stone…

 

 

Steps to retrofitting:

1. Getting Started. Below are ways to retrofit simply. It is advisable to obtain a green audit however as this will tell you what needs to be done as well as the costs involved.

Lighting → The most common retrofit type. Upgrading lighting fixtures can result in an increase in the lighting level while decreasing energy consumption up to 70% which results in saving costs.

Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning –> The efficiency of the HVAC system can be improved through maintenance and upgrades, resulting in improving users’ comfort and minimizing the negative impact on the environment.

Water Systems –> You would want to look at upgrading any faucets, toilets or shower heads fixtures that were made during the Noah’s Ark period. What about those taps at most malls and hotels? The ones that seem to make water softer, bubblier and just all round better… they have aerators and occupancy sensors to reduce the rate of water flowing through the faucets by mixing water with air while maintaining the pressure of the water and this results in significant saving… Oooh Bubbles! 🙂 Also, you can reduce water use by recycling it and rainwater can also be captured for irrigation or even to flush toilets.

Insulation → Good insulation helps by retaining heat in winter and trapping cool air inside in summer. An affordable way to make walls less absorbent of heat is by painting them lighter colours so they reflect light effectively – Genius! Also a double door entrance is an effective insulation measure, who would’ve thought?

On-Site Energy Generation –> Wind turbines are also becoming available and affordable. Ultimately, the right choice of energy renewable adoption depends on the location.

Plants – in the office, on the roof, anywhere. They also provide wonderful, much needed shade.

Solar → Install some solar panels, solar water heaters, or solar voltaic panels.

Equipment –> Replace old outdated office equipment with new energy star rated or energy efficient ones.

Recycling → Place recycling bins at the office like we have at Leads 2 Business

Lift Clubs → Catch a lift to work with your peers. This will save you fuel and is one step closer to saving the planet. Plus this could be fun and a good bonding session or time to catch up on how your day has been or how your cat’s birthday was.

2. Understand your usage
Measure every point of consumption and track and keep a record of these. The Green Building Council SA is in the process of developing a green star rating tool that will help various companies in measuring their buildings operations environmental performance.

3. Changing Behaviour
Educate employees / staff on how to be more energy efficient.

4. Learning from your peers
Sharing success stories with each other as well as failures could help people as some might have come across challenges and others might have solutions to these challenges that they have already overcome themselves.

5. The Right People
As mentioned, see what you can do on your own first and then establish where you need a specialist’s assistance.

6. What now?
Remember retrofitting is a long term plan and we need to encourage employees to continue to act with energy efficiency and sustainability in mind. Keep thinking…. Green, Clean, Hygiene, Coffee Bean, Ice Machine, sheesh….. its easy to get carried away but you know what I mean 😉 Don’t stop pushing the Green drive!

What is the GBCSA?

The Green Building Council South Africa are the people leading the transformation of the property in South Africa. They ensure that buildings are designed, built and are used in an environmentally sustainable way. They address what or where the major issues lie such as excess energy consumption, burning carbon fuels, pollution of air / water and land, depletion of natural resources as well as the proper disposal of waste.

Building owners submit their documentation to the GBCSA to achieve a Green Star SA rating. This is evaluated and assessed. Based on points they would either be awarded a 4-Star, 5-Star or 6-Star rating.

And in closing, please always remember:

“Reduce, Reuse and Recycle”

“DEVELOPMENT, IF NOT SUSTAINABLE, IS A DEAD-END ROAD “

 

 

Just some of the many Green Projects on L2B:

No. 5 Silo

Monte Circle Office Park – Building A

Discovery Health Head Office – Building

Office Development at 102 Rivonia Road, Sandton

 

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About Michelle Hosford

I work full time, study part time and now am the proud owner of the cutest puppy. Sleep...? What is that?

Ways to Reduce your Carbon Footprint

Carbon Footprint

What is a Carbon Footprint?

 

A Carbon Footprint is defined by the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) released into the atmosphere as a result of the activities of a particular individual, organisation, or community.

When researching the ways to reduce your Carbon Footprint there were endless articles, so many in fact I nearly got lost in the green of it all. Let’s break it down.

10 Ways to Reduce your Carbon Footprint:

  1. Plant a Tree – A classic and for good reason. Trees provide shade and oxygen while consuming carbon dioxide. [tweetthis]One 10-year-old tree releases enough oxygen into the air to support 2 human beings.[/tweetthis]
  2. Energy Efficient Appliances – Look for the energy rating when purchasing appliances. The current South African label gives a rating from A down to G; with A being the best for refrigerators, dishwashers, washing machines and electric ovens. For most appliances, insist on an A-rated appliance, they are not difficult to find. (Old refrigerators in your house may be the inefficient equal of a G-rated fridge.) In addition to the letter rating, the label should carry an energy consumption number in kilowatt hours. It is often more useful to compare this number between models than to compare the letter rating.
  3. Switch Off – Turn off the lights when you leave a room. Turn off your computer when not in use, a computer that is off uses at least 65% less energy than one left on screensaver/standby. [tweetthis]Did you know that many electronic devices continue using energy even when off? This is known as Phantom Power.[/tweetthis] Unplug electronic devices when not in use.
  4. Drive Smart – Go for a hybrid when purchasing a new car and if you aren’t going to be doing that anytime soon make sure you keep your current vehicle properly maintained. Carpool if you can, the benefits are obvious. One car uses less fuel than two and much less than three. If you can’t carpool, stick to the following Carbon minimising tips: Don’t idle, travel light, accelerate smoothly, limit air-con use, warm up your car and plan ahead.
  5. Use CFL’s and LED’s – That’s Compact Fluorescent Lamps or Light Emitting Diodes. CFL’s use 75% less energy than an incandescent and last up to 10 times longer. LED’s are also extremely energy efficient; although not widely in use due to their cost, there is no question that LED’s are poised to supersede CFL’s in the future.
  6. Local is Lekker – Purchasing foods that are both in season and grown locally can drastically cut down the carbon emissions of the vehicles used to transport that food. The same concept goes for other goods and services as well as not to mention, you will be supporting the local economy too.
  7. Go Digital – There has been a lot of debate regarding the environmental costs of digital vs. print. The best policy to adopt is, “be mindful”. If you subscribe to a print paper, be sure to recycle your paper every day. If you prefer online news chose an unplugged laptop or e-reader, rather than a plugged-in device for the majority of your browsing time.
  8. Shower Power – [tweetthis]Taking a shower uses about 1/5 of the energy as taking a bath.[/tweetthis] You can also install a “low flow” shower head to limit the amount of water being used and take shorter showers.
  9. Recycle – Recycling reduces the amount of waste sent to rubbish dumps and incinerators; prevents pollution by reducing the need to collect new raw materials; saves energy; reduces greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global climate change; helps sustain the environment for future generations and helps create new jobs. Once you get in the habit of separating your cans, plastic, glass, paper and cardboard, it’s as easy as pie.
  10. Compost & Grow – It makes sense that what nourishes us from the earth should go back to nourishing the earth. Plant your own herbs and veggies. Not only does growing your own food make you a more conscientious global citizen, it brings you a sense of satisfaction.

 

Long story short, the more pollution that we let into the atmosphere, the worse it is for the environment. No matter what your view is on climate change these tips can save you money. Most of them don’t take that much time or effort and at the end of the month you may notice less coming out of the bank account which is a plus at any rate.

Why not start by calculating your Carbon Footprint here

 

 

Reuse Reduce Recycle
Reuse Reduce Recycle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources:

https://www.carbonfund.org/reduce

http://cotap.org/reduce-carbon-footprint/

http://www.carbonfootprint.com/minimisecfp.html

http://www.davidsuzuki.org/what-you-can-do/reduce-your-carbon-footprint/drive-smarter-for-a-better-planet/

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About Sasha Anderson

I enjoy making new professional acquaintances and corresponding with existing clients. Reach out if you want to talk, L2B, social media, construction, technology, shoes, dachshunds, popular culture or travel.

South Africa…. Just how far have we come?

Its hard to be objective about this topic, as it depends on the day and whether I feel like we have progressed or regressed as a country!

I started out researching stats to find out exactly what has got bigger and better and before I knew it I was yawning, now don’t get me wrong, I love good, hard, cold facts and statistics just as much as the next fellow, but do I want to blog about it???

Instead I found myself taking a trip down memory lane…..

I was born in the early 80’s and to be perfectly honest I was 100% oblivious to any political unrest our Country was going through at the time.

Ignorance is bliss they say and I tend to agree with them!!!

Anyway, what I am getting at is, I can only write from where I come from and that is a place where, well let me show you 😉

Blog2

So yes, I have very happy memories of the so called “Old South Africa” but lets get back to reality, We, as a nation celebrated our 20th years of Democracy last year (2014), and I for one think that’s wonderful….. well in theory anyway.

So has much changed? We all know it has, and I’m sure when the “Powers that be” spoke of change back in the day, they all intended for amazing things to be bestowed upon us South Africans, there was promise of jobs, health care, education, sanitation and all round goodwill for all!

Now where are we on this? How are we growing as a country?
Well the current state of affairs doesn’t make me all warm inside, I can tell you that!
Between the shortage of energy and water, I won’t lie, I’ve started looking out of the corner of my eye at other possible Countries to call home….

 

But before I jump ship, lets take a look at the figures first, yes, those stats again…. 🙂

Population of South Africa

Population

From this I can see that we are growing in population at a slower rate pretty much each year, and in my books that’s a win!

 

Unemployment……Well!

Unemp

 

Unemp

Its safe to say we not winning that war when it comes to our youth 🙁

The unemployment rate among the youth is more than twice that of adults each year. The unemployment rate among the youth rose from 32,1% in 2008 to 35,5% in 2015.

 

But why? I took a look at the Matric pass rate for the past few years, and I don’t think it’s insanely bad considering the conditions some of Matriculant’s have to school in.

National_Pass_Rate

It is really sad to know that after all the Exams, Projects, Maths!!! and high school embarrassments there is still no guarantees you will ever join the working world…..

 

 

So what about our GDP? (Growth Domestic Product)

This is pretty much how we measure the health of the Countries Economy, and let me tell you…. it don’t look good!

 

GDP1

Here is the explanation I found off http://www.tradingeconomics.com/

“South Africa is the second largest economy in Africa. The country is rich in natural resources and is a leading producer of platinum, gold, chromium and iron. From 2002 to 2008, South Africa grew at an average of 4.5 percent year-on-year, its fastest expansion since the establishment of democracy in 1994. However, in recent years, successive governments have failed to address structural problems such as the widening gap between rich and poor, low-skilled labour force, high unemployment rate, deteriorating infrastructure, high corruption and crime rates. As a result, since the recession in 2008, South Africa growth has been sluggish and below African average. This page provides – South Africa GDP Growth Rate – actual values, historical data, forecast, chart, statistics, economic calendar and news. Content for – South Africa GDP Growth Rate – was last refreshed on Wednesday, September 2, 2015.”

stock-footage-crime-scene-tape-with-red-and-blue-flashes

Crime in South Africa… now this is a biggy and has, or statistically still will effect everyone of you in some way during the course of your life, if not multiple times…. what a terrifying piece of trivia – you’re welcome 😉

Clearly as a whole, crime is on the rise and currently South Africa ranks 4th in the world as most dangerous place to live!
Gosh, where did we go wrong??? (hanging my head in shame – while looking over my shoulder and shaking in terror!)

465x647q70crime-stats-infographic

 

So Crime states are not really our Country’s selling point, but how are our businesses doing?

Well from this graph below, we have definitely had our ups and down but  It would seem that since the 2008 Recession our businesses are slowly but surely repairing, and I can only hope that our Company liquidation rate continues to decrease! 🙂

Liquidations_graph

 

Now I don’t have any pretty graphs to show you regarding our Construction Industry, however I did come across a report put out by PriceWaterHouseCooper (Interesting read)

http://www.pwc.co.za/en_ZA/za/assets/pdf/sa-construction-2014-v1.2.pdf  

And in short, and be advised that this is the 2014 report, anyway, what they said is, there has not been considerable financial growth in the Construction and Materials Industry, however, and I quote
The South African Government’s ongoing National Development Plan and its continued commitment to public infrastructure investment of R847 billion over the next three years, are positive signals for future growth in the industry.”

And on that optimistic note…. South Africa and in particular Durban have been given the opportunity to achieved greatness once again and will be hosting the Commonwealth Games 2022!!!!

I see this as another chance to revive our economy 🙂

Durban20122Keep it up South Africa, we can add another win to our list!

event

 

So fellow South African’s, our luck may be changing….
And in light of all the information I have found during my research for this blog, it’s a given that South Africa is not in the best state at the moment, in spite of this however, I am an eternal optimist and have to believe we can turn this around. 🙂

 

Now for a little fun trivia about our fine Country – Enjoy;)

 

cad-chappies
DID YOU KNOW? South Africa is the one country to produce two Nobel Price Prize winners from the same street in South Africa?
Both Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu lived at Vilakazi Street in Soweto!

 

 

 

 

cad-chappies

DID YOU KNOW? There are more than 2000 shipwrecks off the coast of South Africa!

 

 

 

 

 

cad-chappies

DID YOU KNOW? The Palace of the lost City is the largest themed resort hotel in the world!!!

 

 

 

 

 

cad-chappies
DID YOU KNOW? A few years ago the UK national Science Lab OFFICIALLY, declared that Cape Town has the bluest sky in the world.

 

 

 

 

 

cad-chappies

DID YOU KNOW? A South African monkey was once awarded a medal and promoted to the rank of corporal during World War I.

 

 

 

 

And if those little nuggets didn’t completely blow your mind, well then this absolutely will!
I stumbled upon this site and I was amazed!!
Take a look at the amount of cigarettes that are smoked, emails that are sent, money spent on video games!! and so much more!

http://www.worldometers.info/

 

 

Well this blog has truly been an eye opener and I hope you all enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!
Until next time;)

 

 

throughback

 

 

Sources:

http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/south-africa-population/
http://www.statssa.gov.za/publications/P0211/P02112ndQuarter2015.pdf
https://africacheck.org/factsheets/factsheet-south-africas-official-crime-statistics-for-201314/

https://www.issafrica.org/crimehub/uploads/crime_situation_sa.pdf
http://www.durban-2022.com/

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About Sherina Shawe

"You have to do everything you can, you have to work your hardest, and if you do, if you stay positive, you have a shot at a silver lining." from: Silver Linings Playbook.

Ancient Inspiration for Modern Motivation

Machu Picchu was discovered in 1911 by the American historian Hiram Bingham. “Discovered” has now been replaced with “brought to international attention”, rightfully so, since you can’t very well discover a place that the locals are using as grazing for their alpacas. And there are maps that reference Machu Picchu from around 1874. The 15th century Inca site sits 2430 metres above sea level, in the Cusco region of Peru. It is very much a stone city on top of a mountain. It’s believed to have been built for the Inca emperor Pachaputi (1438 – 1472), but nobody really knows why. It was abandoned about a century after construction, and managed to survive the Spanish Conquest (since the Spanish didn’t know it was there). Apparently, all six roads leading into Machu Pichu were destroyed and who exactly is going to notice a giant city on top of a mountain during a Conquest? People are busy during conquests, what with spreading disease, pillaging and general rude behaviour. About thirty percent of Machu Picchu has been restored, allowing for a better idea of what the city looked like back in the day and restoration continues.

 

Machu Picchu

 

 

 

[tweetthis]About 500 people are allowed on the Inca Trail, leading into Machu Picchu, a day.[/tweetthis] 500 people including guides, porters and tourists. Apparently, it’s a bit difficult to get tickets. I only realised this days away from my Inca Trail trek, when my friend confessed she’d only agreed to the trek since she didn’t think we’d get tickets. Well, we did. I’ve always wanted to see Machu Picchu. To say it was on my bucket list would be an understatement. You can do the four day trek (hell, no!) or the day trek which meant hopping off the very comfortable Inca Rail train at the 104km mark at 08:00 in the morning, and walking to Machu Picchu over the next 8 hours. There was trepidation. Peru is not a flat country. At all. My overall impression of the place is stairs and more stairs. Half constructed houses, that is the next generation’s responsibility to finish and awesome avocados. Seriously, their food and produce were fantastic. Mielies the size of my head and a ridiculously large selection of potatoes. There’s like 3000 varieties of potatoes in Peru. Who needs that many?! And the coca tea. O the coca tea. This was a lifeline in the shadow of altitude sickness. I digress.

 

Restoration
Restoration

 

Anyway, so we marched it up to Machu Picchu. We had two guides with us, Ruth and Ruti. Ruth took the lead, and Ruti stayed at the back. With the oxygen. I was at the back (no, I didn’t need the oxygen), keeping up the rear as usual. Gentle incline, and then stairs, gentle incline and then more stairs. Waterfalls. Butterflies. Beautiful scenery, with mountains crowding each other and the river so very far below. Trying to keep track of how far we had come, and how far we had to go was truly bizarre. The scale is baffling. Everything is green and lush and vast. Beautiful. I noticed. In between the wheezing and side clutching, and the leg cramps and beating down sun and the unidentifiable rustling in the bushes. We were in the jungle after all. That day we reached the Sun Gate (Inti Punku) and looked across to Machu Picchu. Hazy and still so far away. It’s about 45 minutes walk from the Sun Gate. [tweetthis]The road we’d walked had been run by messengers, when Machu Picchu was occupied.[/tweetthis] We rested in the shelters where they had stopped to pass the messages on. Our tickets didn’t allow for entrance into Machu Picchu that day. It was late and we were sweaty and gross. Feeling accomplished, but still gross. Random thing I noticed, there were only two loose stone pavers on the road we walked. Only two.

 

Machu Picchu

 

The next day, after a bus ride that was more switchback than anything else, we got to go into Machu Picchu. Our guide giving us a basic run down of the city. Basically, not much is known. It was abandoned and no one really knows why. About a 1000 people could inhabit the city. It could’ve been built for strategic or tactical reasons, or as a holiday resort for the Inca Emperor. There’s water and the terraces (which are everywhere) could grow enough food to feed the population. It’s a mystery. But it’s there. The smooth stones, and rounded walls. The single storey and double storey houses. There’s a quarry from which the granite was mined. The windows are trapezoid in shape. Better to survive an earthquake. Peru has lots of earthquakes, and a surprising number of active volcanoes. I was sitting in the shade of a stone wall, listening to our guide and he said something that I thought was quite strange. He mentioned the alien theory for the construction of Machu Picchu. I thought it was weird since when would an official guide give time to such nonsense. But it got better. He had a reason why aliens couldn’t have built Machu Picchu. He pointed out a wall “Aliens didn’t build Machu Picchu. Look, this wall is falling down”. Now, my sarcastic nature took over and I mumbled “What, aliens can’t make mistakes?”. Not exactly helping international relations on my side. Now I don’t for a second think anybody but the local people built Machu Picchu, just like the local people built the Pyramids in Egypt and the local people built Great Zimbabwe. But standing in front of that shifting wall, I couldn’t help but imagine the scene.

 

Machu Picchu

 

Inca Emperor Pachaputi calls his Project Management team together and explains that he wants a new city. The suggestions are flowing, but he knows what he wants. He wants a city on top of a mountain. Technically, on top of a mountain in the saddle between two mountains. No biggie. The frozen smiles and sweaty brows. Someone had to design it (architect) and someone had to figure out how to build it (engineer) and someone had to deal with those two (contractor). The polite suggestions of other locations. The polite consideration and dismissal of said locations. The realistic problems of logistics and access and water and manpower, being politely listened to and considered and dismissed. Since after all, human sacrifice wasn’t completely off the table back in those days. I’m thinking the local chicheria [definition: Place that sells chicha, a fermented or non-fermented beverage derived from maize. Usually] was totally frequented that night. Chicha is sold in half litre glasses. Giant tumblers, people. Giant. I can imagine a lot of head holding and commiserating with strangers going on. Or perhaps that’s not how it played out. Perhaps it was the complete opposite.

 

Inca Engineer says “So what’s it going to be?”

Inca Architect replies “Mountain top city”

“Again?!”

“Again”.

Inca Engineer whines “But it’ll be the third one this year. I’m so bored of building cities on mountains. Can’t we do something new? Like a nice estate in a valley? Ooo sea level”

Inca Architect shrugs “What can I say? The Inca loves his cities on mountains”.

 

 

Falling Wall
Falling Wall

 

 

But is that really a good enough reason to contribute one of the most fantastic pieces of construction on the planet to humans – because part of it is falling down? Way to go human race, we can’t take credit for anything unless it’s blatantly faulty. I’m sure there’s a life lesson in there somewhere. And can you imagine the pressure the poor aliens must be under. They’ve inadvertently created this expectation of perfection. So much so that we doubt our own involvement and attribute any massive structure to little green men.

 

Alien Architect asks “What’s this?” pointing a long decidedly alien looking finger of a greenish hue at a photo.

Alien Engineer Bob replies “Um…”

“Bob. You realise we are trying to share knowledge by example here. We’re are trying to demonstrate our superior skills and expertise. We can’t just say we know better; we have to show the humans. By blowing their minds, with massive building projects on an impressive and totally unnecessary scale. And what I have is a wall sliding off its foundations!! What do you have say for yourself?”

Alien Engineer Bob “Um… have you heard of a drink called chicha?”

“…[Intergalactic facepalm]”.

 

I loved Machu Picchu. I loved the fact I got to go there. I loved what it represented. Achievement and a strange immortality. Someone said build it, and it got built. Skills and knowledge were applied years ago, and their city still stands. And is marveled at daily. It’s really no different from any new project set out today. An idea turns into plans, which turns into execution and accomplishment and completion. The intangible made real. I’ve always considered construction as a way to live forever. An indelible mark on the landscape and history, whether for function or beauty, necessity or whim. Our challenges are our own, and so are our victories. We need no help from little green men.

 

Inti Punku
Inti Punku
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About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

Developing Africa … is Africa the new China?

When I first stepped into the Private Projects Department, I had a vague idea of what to expect from Africa.

 

[tweetthis]What I did not expect was to see huge #developments taking place in the remotest parts of #Africa.[/tweetthis]

 

Developments like:

 

Hope City in Ghana

 

Hope City
Hope City

 

 

 

Desert Rose International Convention and Exhibition Centre in Namibia (it’s just a desert there, right?)

 

Desert Rose Namibia
Desert Rose Namibia

 

 

Mall de Mozambique

 

Mall of Mozambique
Mall of Mozambique

 

 

 

and a whole brand New City to be built in Egypt (another desert??)

 

New City Egypt
New City Egypt

 

 

 

 

These are some of the developments that spring to mind…developments that take your breath away…but how on earth are these small, money hungry countries going to fund, let alone develop these ambitious projects? Projects so ambitious they raise eyebrows…well, mine mostly.

 

For example .  Zimbabwe wanting to build a Disney Land at Victoria Falls…a pipe dream at the moment, but what a dream!! Just to keep tourists there longer than a day or two.

 

Disneyland
Disneyland

 

 

African Development Bank is one way, but most of the investments are coming from China.

The Chinese footprint in Africa has been cemented. In the last decade, investment in Africa by the world’s second-largest economy has surged to $2.9 billion from $75 million, and with it China’s influence can be seen everywhere.

The next question… who is going to build these huge developments?

China of course.! If a Chinese company has invested in a Project, you can be sure that they will be building it too. Build, Own, Operate. But there are benefits, the Chinese do subcontract some of the work to the locals.

Swaziland, however, in an effort to ensure that their local contractors still have work and can tender for contracts, have implemented the rule that any projects less than E120 million cannot be awarded to foreign companies.

So, what has this have to do with developing Africa? Just feeding Africa does not solve anything. Providing them with employment that doesn’t warrant anything more than maybe digging a hole in the ground, painting a room, something that doesn’t require much skill, but providing these people with employment, a sense of self, educating them. Providing them with purpose. A trade. Hope. To me, that is really developing Africa.

When I used to imagine Africa, I used to think of trees, rivers, wildlife, war, jungles and deep dark Africa … nothing much could be happening there right?

How wrong was I !?!

 

 

Photo Sources:

 

http://www.financialgazette.co.zw/wp-content/uploads/Disneyland.jpg

http://ghanagist.com/president-mahama-launches-hope-city/

http://www.mccormick-property.com/mpd/content/mall-mozambique

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-03-14/egyptian-government-reveals-plans-to-build-new-capital/6320144

http://www.namibiansun.com/infrastructure/governor-unhindered-by-n8bn-project-conservation-concerns.82564

 

 

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About Melanie Miles

One girl who would rather wear boots than high heels...

South African Harbours and Ports

 

 

Harbour & Port
Harbour & Port

 

According to a Port Development Plan by Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA), dated September 2014, various developments have been listed for the Ports currently under the TNPA’s care and control, namely Western Ports: Saldanha Bay, Cape Town and Mossel Bay; Central Ports: Port Elizabeth, Ngqura and East London and Eastern Ports: Durban, New Durban Dig-Out Port and Richards Bay. Below is a brief breakdown of some of the activity at South African’s various Ports.

 

Western Ports:

 

Port of Saldaha Bay – In 2013 with the aim in increasing the iron ore export from the Port of Saldanha Bay, Transnet proposed a third tippler and associated infrastructure, for which Gibb (Pty) Ltd were appointed as the Independent Environmental Assessment Practitioners. The tender for the Construction of Vault, Tunnel, Buildings and Ancillaries for Transnet Tippler 3 Project at the Port of Saldanha was advertised at the end of July 2015 (DTA 525896) and is expected to close on 08 September 2015.

 

Port of Cape Town – The Request for Proposal for the New Cruise Terminal Facility at the Port of Cape Town was advertised in December 2014 (DTA 487279), and in June 2015 the announcement by Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) was made of the preferred bidder being V & A Waterfront (Pty) Ltd. According to the media statement, the V & A Waterfront will invest just under R179 million to finance, design and develop the terminal and the agreement includes the operation, maintenance and transfer of ownership of the facility back to TNPA after a period of 20 years. Currently, V & A Waterfront are in negotiations to sign the lease, and it’s expected that any development will only commence after May 2016.

 

Port of Mossel Bay – The most recent tender concerning construction in the Port of Mossel Bay is the Request for Proposal for Extension and Construction of the Administrative Building in the Port of Mossel Bay (DTA 500781) which was advertised in March this year. So far no award has been made.

 

Central Ports:

 

Port of Port Elizabeth – TNPA expectes to relocate the Manganese Ore Terminal and the Tank Fam to the Port of Ngqura. TNPA expects to start shipping manganese ore out of Ngqura in 2019 and the relocation should happen before this. As of December 2014, it could take these four years before the Manganese Terminal at the Port of Ngqura is completed therefore ending the relocation from the Port of Port Elizabeth. Apparently the plan is to convert the Manganese Terminal and tank farm land into a vehicle terminal, the timeframe for the decommisioning and rehabilitation of tank and manganese land is 2018 to 2021. As of 14 August 2015, Transnet Port Terminals was issued with a permanent operating license for operating the manganese terminal at the Port of Ngqura.

 

Port of Ngqura – Manganese Export Expansion Project at the Port of Nguqura involves the upgrade and expansion of the rail network, new bulk minerals export terminal and the reinstatement of existing berths. Infrastructure will comprise new roads, infrastructure services and buildings as well as new equipment: stackers, reclaimers, surge bins and an unloading system (tippler), a conveyor system linking the stockyard with existing berths and these berths will be equipped with twin shiploaders. The tenders for the Port of Ngqura Manganese Export Terminal (DTA 444247) as well as Phase 2 of the Rail project (DTA 444237) were advertised April 2014. The tender for the Design, Supply, Installation and Commissioning of 2 Shiploaders for the Ngqura Manganese Export has been advertised in August 2015 (DTA 527882) and ix expected to close on 22 September 2015. The tender for Design, Supply, Installation and Commissioning of a Rotary Dual Wagon Tippler Facility including Supply and Installation of Apron Feeders, Dust Extraction and Suppression Systems, for the Ngqura Manganese Export Terminal is also out (DTA 527873) and also closes on 22 September 2015. Port of East London – In July 2014, it was announced that the Coal terminal at the Port of East London would move to the new Port of Ngqura and be operational in approximately five year’s time. Future development that might be expected is the extention to the Port of East London to include an expanded container terminal, refurbish liquid bulk facilities and boat building.

 

Eastern Ports:

 

Port of Richards Bay – With regards to the Port of Richards Bay, plans include the establishment of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility.

 

Port of Durban – The Request for Proposal for the Design, Development, Financing, Construction, Operation and Maintenance and Transfer of the New Cruise Terminal Facilities at the Port of Durban was initially advertised in June 2013 (DTA 382061). No award was made and it was advertised again in July 2015 (DTA 524504) The RFP is expected to close on 02 October 2015.

Durban Dig-Out Port (DDOP) – “From 2019 to 2042, Transnet will embark on its medium-term projects, which includes the new dig-out port. The new harbour will be built at Durban’s old International Airport and will require the construction of: a breakwater and entrance channel; a 16 berth container basin and terminals; and a new automotive terminal, among other infrastructure”. So far the driver for the DDOP remains the same, demand will exceed capacity at the existing Port of Durban by ±2025. Although nothing has advanced beyond the planning stage, the current view is that the first phase should be operational by 2025. (PPA 10166)

 

 

Sources

http://www.transnetnationalportsauthority.net/Corporate%20Affairs/Press%20Releases/2015-07-01%20-%20Transnet%20Awards%20Bid%20for%20Cape%20Town%20Cruise%20Terminal.pdf

http://www.transnet.net/BusinessWithUs/LTPF%202012/1.LTPF%202014_Chapter%2004__Ports_Final%20Proof_Sept%202014.pdf

http://projects.gibb.co.za/Portals/3/Appendix%20G%20Tippler%203%20draft%20Environmental%20Management%20Programme.pdfawards-bid-for-cape-town-terminal

http://www.shopwestcoast.co.za/proposed-third-tippler-for-the-port-of-saldanha-transnet-saldanha-bay/

http://www.transnetportterminals.net/Media/Publications%20Paper%20and%20Presentation/TPT%20Saldanha.pdf

http://www.engineeringnews.co.za/article/port-of-ngqura-manganese-export-expansion-project-south-africa-2015-04-03http://www.nmbbusinesschamber.co.za/blog/posts/another-major-step-in-transnet-s-manganese-expansion

http://www.iol.co.za/business/news/transnet-slows-ore-terminal-relocation-1.1687158

http://www.heraldlive.co.za/tank-farm-removal-delayed/

http://m.news24.com/fin24/Economy/Cabinet-grants-Transnet-license-for-manganese-terminal-20150814

http://www.dispatchlive.co.za/business-2/focused-strategy-for-el-port-after-big-loss/

http://www.engineeringnews.co.za/article/morwe-outlines-tnpas-port-development-plans-2014-09-02

http://www.saoga.org.za/information-hub/port-handbook/future-plans

http://www.rsagency.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Develop-in-SA-Sep14.pdf

http://www.skylinegroup.co.za/transnet-re-assesses-dig-out-dates/

Please follow and like us:

About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

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