A literature review on the potential of renewable electricity sources for mining operations in South Africa
AbstractThe economic situation of mining corporations operating in South Africa has in recent years created considerable challenges in staying globally competitive. One reason for this is the increase in average electricity costs from 7% to 20% of total operational expenses since 2007. Forecasts for the next decade predict that this development will continue at similar rates. The reliability of Eskom has also decreased, with self-generation being increasingly considered. In addition, the South African government plans to launch a carbon tax in 2016, which will further add to the costs of current electricity sources. This paper investigates the potential of renewable electricity sources for mining operations in South Africa. It is based on an extensive literature analysis, which was conducted in the form of a conceptual review. The investigation of electricity usage patterns reveals that mining operations commonly have a relatively constant day and night consumption. One of the prerequisites for a suitable source is its ability to supply electricity constantly. Most renewable sources can therefore only be used in hybrid versions, owing to relatively high intermittencies, especially with electricity supply from solar photovoltaic and wind generation. Nevertheless, the levelised costs are substantially lower than diesel generators and are already similar to Eskom tariffs, whilst also lowering carbon emissions. The business case of self-generation is shown to be positive. An on-site project can be realised through a power purchase agreement or through own investments.
Ahlfeldt, C. 2013. The localisation potential of photovoltaic PV and a strategy to support large scale rollout in South Africa. South Africa: WWF, SAPVIA, Department of Trade and Industry, Pretoria.
Alton, T., Arndt, C., Davies, R., Hartley, F., Markrelov, K., Thurlow, J. & Ubogu, D. 2014. Introducing carbon taxes in South Africa. Applied Energy 116, March:344–354.
Ambros, D. 2014. Project ‘zimbi’: PV/diesel hybrid power case study. Final report. Unterhaching: Cronimet Power Solutions Gmbh.
Baker & McKenzie. 2013. The future of clean energy in Africa. Final report. Chicago: Green Energy Pipeline.
Banerjee, G.S., Romo, Z., McMahon, G., Toledano, P. & Robinson, P. 2014. The power of the mine: A transformative opportunity for sub-Saharan Africa. Final report. Washington D.C.: World Bank Group, ESMAP, Africa Region Sustainable Development.
Baxter, R. 2015. Presentation of Chamber position on carbon tax to the Davis Tax Committee. Johannesburg: Chamber of Mines of South Africa.
Beukman, H. 2015. Mineral sand resources. Presentation. Johannesburg: MSR.
Bole-Rentel, T. & Bruinsma, D. 2013. The bioenergy sector in South Africa. Den Haag: tbr Consulting, ECN, Bruinsma Solutions.
Boyse, F., Causevic, A., Duwe, E. & Orthofer, M. 2014. Sunshine for mines: Implementing renewable energy for off-grid operations. Washington, DC: Carbon War Room.
Branker, K., Pathak, M.J.M. & Pearce, J.M. 2011. A review of solar photovoltaic levelized cost of electricity. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 159: 4470–4482.
Brodsky, S., Curnow, P., Fevre, M., Ghannam, M., Nasrollah, K. & O’Brien, J.P. 2013. The future of clean energy in Africa. Chicago: Baker & McKenzie.
Chamber Of Mines. 2014. Facts and figures 2014. Johannesburg: Chamber of Mines of South Africa.
Cornish, L. 2013. Energy management – delivering operational excellence. Inside Mining 61:60-61.
Creamer, T. 2012. Big users urge hard line on Eskom costs, as utility delays tariff submission. Mining weekly. Available at www.miningweekly.com/article/ big-users-urge-hard-line-on-eskom-costs-as-utilitydelays- tariff-submission-2012-08-31 [2015, January
Crespo, T. 2015. Despite barriers to adopting, costs pressure driving renewed mining interest in renewable energy. Toronto: Energy and Mines.
Cronimet Power Solutions. 2015. Project Thabazimbi chromium mine. Available: www.crmps.com/en/thabazimbi.php [2015, January 30].
Department of Environmental Affairs. 2015. Department of Environmental Affairs, Republic of South Africa. Available: www.environment.gov.za [2015, April 6].
Dhawan, R. 2015. Carbon tax in the mining sector. Business media live. Available: www.businessmedialive.co.za/the-distributional-impacts-of-a-carbon-taxin-the-mining-sector/. [2015, November 25].
Dickens, A., Singh, C., Bosset, P., Mitchell, V., Cosgrove, J., McLoughlin, S. & Cuadrado, P. 2014. Energy storage: Power to the people. London: HSBC Global Research.
Department of Energy. 2013. Integrated resource plan for electricity IRP 2010–2030. Johannesburg: Department of Energy, Republic of South Africa.
Department of Energy. 2015. Department of Energy, Republic of South Africa. Available: http://www.doeirp.co.za [2015, April 6].
Department of Trade and Industry. 2015. The wind energy industry localisation roadmap in support of large-scale roll-out in South Africa. Johannesburg: Department of Trade and Industry, Republic of South Africa.
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit. 2014. Alternative energy in mining. Pretoria: German Cooperation; Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit; South African Institute of International Affairs.
E-CL. 2015. E-CL and Quiborax to build solar PV plant. Available: www.ecl.cl/prontus_ecl/site/artic/20130705/pags/20130705 115312.php [2015, January 30].
Elliott, M. 2014. Business risks facing mining and metals. London: Ernst & Young Global Mining & Metals Center.
Enercon. 2015. Windenergieanlagen. Available: http://www.enercon.de/dede/ windenergieanlagen.htm [2015, January 31].
Energy and Mines. 2015. Introduction to renewable energy with mining operations. Available: http://energyandmines.com [2015, March 17].
Energy Intensive User Group of Southern Africa. 2014b. Electricity cost as a percentage of annual expenditure. Available: www.eiug.org.za/about/membership/ [2014, December 27].
Eskom. 2010. The energy efficiency series: Towards an energy efficiency mining sector. Johannesburg: Eskom Demand Side Management Department.
Eskom. 2013. Map of Eskom power stations. Available: www.eskom.co.za/Whatweredoing/ElectricityGeneration/PowerStations/Pages/Map_Of_ Eskom_Power_Stations.aspx [2015, April 4].
Eskom. 2014. Environmental management. Available: http://financialresults.co.za/ 2012/eskom_ar2012/factsheets/ 013.php. [2015, April 4].
Eskom. 2015a. Transmission development plan 2015– 2024. Johannesburg: Eskom.
Fichtner. 2010. Technology assessment of CSP technologies for a site specific project in South Africa, final report. Johannesburg: The World Bank & ESMAP.
First Solar. 2015. Rio Tinto’s project. Available: www.firstsolar.com/en/about-us/projects [2015, January 30].
Forer, G., Warren, B., O’Flynn, B., Elliott, M., Mitchell, P. & Downham, L. 2014. Mining: The growing role of renewable energy. London: Ernst & Young.
Fouché, N. 2013. Palabora mining company: The effect of power tariff increases. Management presentation. Phalaborwa: Palabora Mining Company.
Fraunhofer ISE. 2013. Levelized cost of electricity: Renewable energy technologies. Freiburg: Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems.
Galaxy Resources. 2015. Mt Cattlin mining location. Available:
www.galaxyresources.com.au/pro_raven_mt_cattlin.s.html [2015, January 31].
Gauché, P., Brent, A. & Von Backström, T.W. 2014. Concentrating solar power: Improving electricity cost and security of supply, and other economic benefits. Development Southern Africa 315:692–710.
Geothermal Energy Association. 2013. Geothermal power: International market overview. Washington D.C.: Geothermal Energy Association.
Gets, A. & Mhlanga, R. 2013. Powering the future: Renewable energy roll-out in South Africa. Johannesburg: Greenpeace South Africa.
Gielen, D. 2012. Power sector costing study. Abu Dhabi: International Renewable Energy Agency. Glencore. 2015. Powering a mine on wind. Available: http://www.glencore. com/sustainability/ case-studies/p/powering-a-mine-on-wind [2015, February 1].
Global Data. 2014. Diesel generator market – global market size, equipment share and competitive analysis to 2020. London: Global Data Research Institute.
Haw, H. 2013. Overview of solar PV in South Africa. Cape Town: South African Photovoltaic Industry Association.
Hinkley, J., Curtin, B., Hayward, J., Wonhas, A., Boyd, R., Grima, C., Tadros, A., Hall, R., Naicker, K. & Mikhail, A. 2011. Concentrating solar power-drivers and opportunities for cost-competitive electricity. Victoria: CSIRO.
International Energy Agency. 2011. Geothermal heat and power roadmap. Paris: International Energy Agency.
International Energy Agency. 2014. Africa energy outlook: A focus on energy prospects in Sub-Saharan Africa. Paris: International Energy Agency.
International Monetary Fund. 2014. World economic outlook. Washington D.C.: International Monetary Fund.
International Renewable Energy Agency. 2012. Biomass for power generation. Abu Dhabi: International Renewable Energy Agency.
International Renewable Energy Agency. 2013. Hybrid power systems. Abu Dhabi: International Renewable Energy Agency.
International Renewable Energy Agency. 2014. Estimating the renewable energy potential in Africa: A GIS approach. Bonn: International Renewable Energy Agency.
International Renewable Energy Agency. 2015a. Renewable power generation costs in 2014. Bonn: International Renewable Energy Agency.
International Renewable Energy Agency. 2015b. Battery storage for renewables: Market status and technology outlook. Bonn: International Renewable Energy Agency.
International Renewable Energy Agency. 2015c. Africa power sector: Planning and prospects for renewable energy. Bonn: International Renewable Energy Agency.
Jamasmie, C. 2014. Anglo American considers closing platinum mines in South Africa. Mining. Available: www.mining.com/anglo-american-considers-closingplatinum- mines-in-s-africa-98146/ [2015, April 6].
Judd, E. 2014a. Positioning mines to meet the mining industry’s energy needs. Toronto: Energy and Mines.
Judd, E. 2014b. Sincerity and patience required for renewables in mining sector. Toronto: Energy and Mines.
Klein, S.J.W. & Whalley, S. 2015. Comparing the sustainability of U.S. electricity options through multicriteria decision analysis. Energy Policy 79 April:127–149.
Klunne, W.J. 2012. Current status and future developments of small and micro hydro in Southern Africa. Journal of Energy in Southern Africa 243:14–25.
Kohler, M. 2014. Differential electricity pricing and energy efficiency in South Africa. Energy 641:524–532.
Kusakana, K. 2014. A survey of innovative technologies increasing the viability of micro-hydro power as a cost effective rural electrification option in South Africa. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 37, September:370–379.
Lazard. 2014. Levelized cost energy analysis – version 8.0. New York: Lazard Asset Management.
Levesque, M., Millar, D. & Paraszczak, J. 2014. Energy and mining. Journal of cleaner production 84 (December): 233-255.
Maasdam, R. 2015. Energy crisis – The case of South Africa. Johannesburg: Rabobank Economic Research Department.
MAKE Consulting. 2013. Global wind turbine trends 2012: Lowering the levelized cost of electricity. Aahhus: MAKE Consulting.
Mathews, E.H. 2005. Implementation of DSM strategies at the Kopanang Mine. Journal of Energy in Southern Africa 162:32-37.
Metric Conversion. 2015. Metric tons to ounces. Available: http://www.metricconversions.org/weight/metric-tons-to-ounces.htm [2015, December 1].
Michigan State University. 2006. South Africa: Industrial areas, mines, and ports. Available: http://overcomingapartheid.msu.edu/ image.php?id=65-254-103 [2015, April 3].
Mostert, M. 2014. A quantitative method for selecting renewable energy projects in the mining industry based on sustainability. Master’s thesis, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.
Mulaudzi, S.K., Muchie, M. & Makhado, R. 2012. Investigation of the solar energy production and contribution in South Africa. African Journal of Science, Technology, Innovation and Development,
National Treasury of South Africa. 2015. Publication ofthe Draft Carbon Tax Bill for public comment. Pretoria: Department of National Treasury of South Africa.
National Renewable Energy Laboratory. 2015. Concentrating solar power projects in South Africa. Colorado, USA: National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
Ngugi, P.K. 2012. What does geothermal cost? – the Kenya experience. El Salvador: United Nations University.
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. 2014. Economic Outlook no 95 – long term baseline projections. Paris: Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. 2014. World Oil Outlook. Vienna: Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries.
Pattern Energy. 2015. El Arrayán wind. Available: http://patternenergy.com.en/operations/projects/ el_arrayan [2015, January 30].
Petticrew, M. & Roberts, H. 2006. Systematic reviews in the social science: A practical guide. Oxford: Blackwell.
Peyper, L. 2015. Can a carbon tax still fly as SA mining sinks? Miningmx, 13 August. Available: www.miningmx.com/page/special_ reports/miningyearbook/ mining-yearbook-2015/1653564-Can-acarbon- tax-still-fly-as-SA-mining-sinks#.VlXD_LSZa- I. [2015, November 25].
Rame Energy. 2014. Past projects. Available: www.rame-energy. com/operations/past-projects [2015, January 30].
Reddy, V. & Jorgensen, P. 2014. Managing greenhouse gas emissions in mining: Opinion. ReSource 163:12–13.
Redevia. 2015. Mining location in Tanzania. Available: www.redaviasolar.com/mines [2015, January 31].
Rehman, S., Alam, M., Meyer, J.P. AND Al-Hadhrami, L.M. 2012. Feasibility study of a wind-pv-diesel hybrid power system for a village. Renewable Energy 38:258-268.
Reeves, R., Whittaker, S. & Ellinghaus, S.D. 2015. Conference Interview, 24 February. Johannesburg: Energy and Mining Summit.
Renewable Energy Resource Cooperation. 2014. Suriname solar project. Available: www.rerc.us/projects.htm [2015, January 30].
Republic of South Africa. 2013. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions and facilitating the transition to a green economy. Carbon Tax Policy Paper. Pretoria: National Treasury.
Rycroft, M. 2014a. The potential of small hydro power plants in southern Africa. Energize May 2014:18–22.
Rycroft, M. 2014b. Wheeling and dealing: Connecting electricity suppliers and customers. Energize April 2014:44–48.
Seccombe, A. 2015. Chamber of mines says carbon tax will damage industry. Business Day, 20 May. Available: www.bdlive.co.za/ business/mining/2015/05/20/chamber- of-mines-says-carbon-tax-will-damage-industry [2015, November 25].
Schulze, R.E. 2007. Primary production, in R.E. Schulze ed. South African atlas of climatology and agrohydrology. Water Research Commission, Pretoria, RSA, WRC Report 1489/1/06, Section 14.1.
Société Nationale Industrielle et Minière de Mauritanie. 2013. Inauguration of SNIM’s wind power plant. Available: http://www.snim.com/e/index.php/news-amedia/news/10-inauguration-of-snims-wind-powerplant.html [2015, February 1].
Soitec. 2015. Concentrix™ technology in action around the world. Available: www.soitec.com/en/productsand-services/solar-cpv/our-references [2015, February 1].
Solairedirect. 2012. The Dayton project. Available: www.solairedirect.com/international-presence/chile [2015, January 31].
SolarGis. 2013. Direct normal irradiation – South Africa. Available: http://solargis.info/doc/postermaps [2016, April 19].
Solarpack. 2012a. Calama solar 3 project. Available: www.solarpack. es/ing/calama.aspx [2015, January 30].
Solarpack. 2012b. Pozo Almonte solar project. Available: www.solarpack.es/ing/pozo-almonte.aspx [2015, January 31].
South African Photovoltaic Industry Association. 2013. South Africa PV industry – overview. Johannesburg: South African Photovoltaic Industry Association.
South African Wind Energy Association. 2015. Wind industry growth. Available: http://www.sawea.org.za/resource-library/useful-information/109-industrygrowth.html [2015, March 25].
Statistics South Africa. 2015a. Gross domestic product: Second quarter 2015. Pretoria: Stats SA publications.
Statistics South Africa. 2015b. Mining: Production and Sales, September 2015. [Online]. Available: www.statssa.gov.za/?page_id=1856&PPN=P2041&SCH=6230. [2015, November 15].
Stellar Energy. 2013. Barrick-Western power plant. Available: www. stellarenergy.com/case-studies/commercial-solar/commercial/item/ barrick-westernpower-plant.html [2015, January 31].
Sun Edison. 2013. Amanecer solar CAP. Available: www.sunedison.cl /chile [2015, January 31].
Swart. I. 2015 Draft Carbon Tax Bill released: South Africa moves to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Johannesburg: Deloitte and Touche.
Toledano, P. 2012. Leveraging the mining industry’s energy demand to improve host countries’ power structure. Working paper. New York: Colombia University.
Tshibalo, A.E., Dhansay, T., Nyabeze, P., Chevallier, L., Musekiwa, C. & Olivier, J. 2015. Evaluation of the geothermal energy potential for South Africa. Proceedings World Geothermal Congress 2015
Melbourne. Johannesburg: University of South Africa.
Van Rensburg, D. 2015. Carbon tax? What carbon tax? Fin24, 8 November. Available: www.fin24.com/Economy/Carbon-tax-What-carbontax- 20151106. [2015, November 25].
Van Staden, P. 2015. Energy management Sasol. Presentation. Johannesburg: Sasol.
Van Zyl, E. 2010. Bioenergy potential in sub-Saharan Africa. Stellenbosch: Stellenbosch University, Department of Microbiology.
Vergnet Wind Turbines. 2014. El Toqui. Available: www.vergnet.com /en/ centrale-eltoqui.php [2015, January 30].
WASA. 2014. Wind atlas for South Africa. Available: http://www.wasaproject.info [2015, April 2].
Wernecke, G. 2015. Senior Project Manager, Cronimet Mining Power Solutions SA. Johannesburg: Personal interview, [May, 6].
Williams, N.C. 2014. Demand reduction and responsive strategies for underground mining. PhD thesis, University of Exeter, Exeter, England.
Wirth, G. 2015. Technical manager at Cronimet Power Solutions. Unterhaching: Cronimet Power Solutions. Personal interview.
World Bank Group. 2015a. Africa Power-Mining projects database. Washington D.C.: World Bank Group.
World Bank Group. 2015b. Commodity markets outlook. Washington D.C.: World Bank Group.
World Bank Group. 2015c. Economic data South Africa. Available: http://data.worldbank.org/country/southafrica. [2015, November 13].
Wouter, F. 2014. Energy management AGA. Presentation. Johannesburg: AngloGold Ashanti.
Copyright remains with the author(s).
Publishing rights remain with the author(s)
All articles published in JESA can be re-used under the following CC license: CC BY-SA Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.