Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Journal of Energy in Southern Africa]]> vol. 29 num. 3 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<b>Energy use in informal food enterprises: A gender perspective</b>]]> The informal sector provides economic opportunities to the poor, and in sub-Saharan African countries it is dominated by women. Energy is a key input into the food sector enterprises. A study was carried out to review academic and non-academic literature on the use and gender impacts of modern energy in informal food enterprises. The review established that few studies have addressed energy for the informal food sector from a gender perspective. Although these few are qualitative in nature, they tend to lack in-depth analysis of gender and of the cause-and-effect linkages between modern energy use in the informal sector and the gendered goals of women and men. Moreover, a lack of understanding of gender from a relational perspective focusing on both women and men impeded conclusions on empowerment in terms of whether increased access to modern energy in the informal food sector contributes to closing the gender gap. This paper makes three key recommendations. First, scholars need to address the gaps and take a relational approach, so that studies are not just about women but also about the power relations between various groups of women and men. Secondly, policy needs to recognise that biomass is sometimes desired not just as an energy source but also for the flavour it imparts to food. Lastly, policy should be informed by the needs of informal enterprise owners and their customers, not by the general discourse in the energy sector that assumes that increased uptake of modern energy services makes positive contributions to enterprises. Highlights: ● There is a lack of evidence on the role of energy in the informal food sector from a gender perspective. ● Biomass is prevalent in the informal food sector due to the sector's specific energy needs and to socio-cultural practices. ● There is a need for studies on gender and energy from a relational perspective in relation to energy and entrepreneurship. <![CDATA[<b>Novel measurement and verification of irrigation pumping energy conservation under incentive-based programmes</b>]]> In most countries the agricultural sector, especially crop irrigation, is a considerable energy consumer. Farm irrigation studies in South Africa showed that energy and water is wasted on a large scale and there is a large potential for improving efficiency. The present study focusses on the measurement and verification (M) of irrigation pumping energy conservation measures (ECMs) under the Eskom Standard Product Programme funding mechanism in South Africa. A novel M methodology was developed to quantify ECM impacts under the Programme, which has special conditions and unique M requirements, which makes normal approaches inapplicable. Methods were designed to effectively determine conservative but representative impacts without continuous power demand profile measurement. The design involved unique methods to quantify operational demand reduction, annual energy consumption and annual average demand reduction impacts. The design was broadened to include pumps irrigating multiple crop areas and different kind of crops. The methodologies and techniques developed were validated and verified through establishing independent cross-check measures. The paper discusses a regional top-down M approach to verify the actual total energy efficiency and load reduction on the electricity grid for a specific region. Highlights ● Irrigation energy conservation measures under incentivised programmes. ● The M of irrigation pumping energy efficiency under the Eskom Standard Product Programme. ● Instantaneous and average demand reduction with annual energy consumption reduction. ● Quantify impacts without continuous power demand profile measurement. <![CDATA[<b>Evaluating complex mine ventilation operational changes through simulations</b>]]> Increasing the profitability of the mining industry is contingent on its ability to improve operational efficiency. Mine ventilation networks typically represent 25-50% of a mine's energy consumption and, therefore, exhibits scope for optimisation. Ventilation networks comprise numerous complex integrated airways, branches and ventilation fans. The most effective way to optimise and evaluate them is computer-aided simulations. However, no framework exists to clarify exactly how operational changes in ventilation networks should be evaluated. In this study, a scalable method was developed, implemented and analysed. The case study validation resulted in satisfying key performance indicators of both service delivery and operational energy costs, thereby increasing operational efficiency. The significance of the novel method is that it allows for improved operational decisions on mine ventilation networks. The value of the method was illustrated by the adoption of the method by the case study mining personnel to form the new norm of their procedures and standards. Highlights: ● Mine ventilation operational changes optimised and evaluated through simulations. ● Scalable method. ● Additional non-energy benefits. <![CDATA[<b>Road transport vehicles in South Africa towards 2050: Factors influencing technology choice and implications for fuel supply</b>]]> The South African transport sector is estimated to emit 60 MtCO2eq and require 800 PJ of energy, similar in scale to industrial energy demand and emissions. The sector is forecast to potentially eclipse industry in this regard if conventional vehicle choices and travel modes persist. This paper explores scenarios of transport technology choices and demand in a future of uncertain fuel and technology costs, and the consequences for energy supply and greenhouse gas emissions. It explores the extent of electric vehicle (EV) adoption and the implication of fuel migration from petroleum products. The preference for alternative fuels such as hydrogen, liquid biofuels and natural gas is also investigated. The evolution of road transport in South Africa towards 2050 is investigated utilising the South African TIMES model, a full energy sector least-cost optimisation model that relies on a rich technological database of the entire energy supply and demand system. Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are shown to be a viable option in freight and public transport, potentially meeting 70% of travel demand by 2045. The private passenger and light commercial sectors emerge as the main market for electric vehicles, potentially accounting for 80% of new vehicle sales by 2045. Electricity as a transport fuel could account for 30% of fuel supply and reduce transport emissions to half of present day estimates. However, the key uncertainty driving EV adoption is future vehicle costs and crude oil prices, which could dampen EV uptake. Another main finding is that petroleum-dependent vehicles remain an important vehicle class, and that re-investment in existing crude oil refineries to conform to Euro5 standards is a likely requirement. There seems to be little indication, however, that additional refining capacity would be economically viable within the planning horizon. <![CDATA[<b>The impact of energy fuel choice determinants on sustainable energy consumption of selected South African households</b>]]> The erratic nature of electricity supply in South Africa combines with other factors continuous to affect household electricity demand, leading to increasing reliance on other fuels. This dependence is characterised by the use of traditional fuels by mostly low-income households, contributing significantly to environmentally harmful emissions. This study assessed the primary determinants of energy fuel choice in selected South African households, to alert policymakers to important energy consumption behavioural tendencies that can inform policies and that can assist sustainable energy growth and reduction of biomass use in households. The investigation was primarily based on energy consumption models and used a quantitative research design. Gauteng and North West were considered for data collection. Households, in general, tended to practice energy stacking. The results suggest policy measures that could promote sustainable energy use by households. <![CDATA[<b>Perceived success of energy strategies for South Africa's financial services industry</b>]]> Energy strategies have become a global focal point involving both individuals and organisations. These strategies are implemented widely by developed countries to address greenhouse gas emissions. Developing countries are, on the other hand, lagging behind with this important global objective of reducing emissions. South Africa is one of these countries because of its rapid industrialisation along with its increasing use of coal to produce energy. It is therefore imperative for the country to develop and implement energy strategies supported by a culture and awareness of energy management. The purpose of the present study is to create an awareness of the current state of energy strategies in terms of energy conservation, efficiency and sustainability. A quantitative research design was followed, using a questionnaire to evaluate the energy management strategies implemented by the South African financial services industry. The results indicated that there are two main barriers against their implementation: their cost, and limited awareness and knowledge of the various strategies available. The results show that renewable energy strategies are not exploited to a beneficial degree. One way to enhance the development and efficiency of renewable energy strategies is to improve communication about the benefits through training and education programmes. Highlights: ● Energy conservation and efficiency strategies assist with reducing energy costs. ● Barriers against implementation include the cost of the strategies and lack of knowledge. ● Communication improves reductions in energy costs. <![CDATA[<b>The energy transition patterns of low-income households in South Africa: An evaluation of energy programme and policy</b>]]> The transition to modern energy carriers like elec- poverty; electricity tricity is an important way to achieve to eradicate energy poverty. This study investigated energy transition patterns and trends in low-income South African households. The marginal effects of the different determinants on the probability of choosing a specific energy carrier were computed and the influence of some endogenous characteristics in transitioning to modern energy carriers was explored. It was found that energy ladder behaviour exists for cooking while energy stacking was most likely for space heating and the pattern for lighting tended towards energy stacking. Dwelling type, household size and geographical location were among the key determinants of the energy transition pattern. Policies to reduce energy poverty need a multi-pronged approach and not only a focus on electricity access. <![CDATA[<b>The viability of biomethane as a future transport fuel for Zambian towns: A case study of Lusaka</b>]]> The objective of the study was to determine the viability of biomethane as a transport fuel for Zambian urban towns. The study revealed good potential for biomethane production and use as a transport fuel in Zambian towns, using Lusaka as a case example. There is 3.67 million m³ biomethane potential from municipal solid waste alone in Lusaka. About 3 000 tonnes of organic fertiliser would replace an equivalent amount of chemical fertiliser. The replaced chemical fertiliser would lead to about 5.816 GgCO2eqy-1 as avoided emissions. The study showed a positive net present value at the prevailing market interest rates of 28-40%; the project would become unviable at interest rates higher than that. It was estimated that the project would recover its initial investment in a maximum of two years. The research findings have closed data and information gaps in Zambia and have potential to contribute to academic research, policymaking, investments, financing and interested parties.