Day three of the Enlit Africa digital event kept paced with the previous day’s sessions by providing insight and expertise into key industry subject matters.
Here are four key takeaways from the third day of Enlit Africa digital event
- TID rollover must be prioritised and communicated before D-day
Sponsored by the STS Association, this session addressed the very urgent need for South African municipalities to implement strategies to facilitate the TID rollover before the expected deadline of 2024.
The technical remedy to ensure your rollover is successful is to visit each meter and enter two reset tokens. The TID rollover campaign proposed by STS is:
- Prepare vending system
- Check meter certification prior to 2014
- Purchase new meters coded to base date 2014
- Execute TID rollover key change
Communication was a key theme in the session as panelists emphasised the importance of municipalities communicating the upcoming changes and being proactive in the rollover.
2. Hydrogen presents an opportunity for Africa to be a net exporter
Africa is uniquely placed for specifically green hydrogen. The problem is that Africa is currently a net importer of energy and it is costing the continent billions of dollars. Hydrogen could theoretically transform Africa into a net exporter of hydrogen. Africa is abundant with various renewable energy sources and renewable energy is needed to produce hydrogen. The issue, however, is that the electricity from renewable energy cannot always be stored or applied for all types of end-uses and this where hydrogen comes in.
Infrastructure when it comes to moving hydrogen is also an important element in exploiting Africa’s hydrogen capabilities. The moving of hydrogen depends heavily on the volume that needs to be transported, laying down pipelines would be competitive if there is a minimum volume. In South Africa, however, truck transportation would be a more competitive option. Shipping will also be needed as pipelines do not always provide all the flexibility needed for trade and to cross long distances.
3. Nigeria’s prepaid meter rollout increases by almost 100% between 2018 -2020
Sponsored by Conlog, this session unpacked the significant developments in the metering industry in Nigeria. The country has seen an almost 100% increase in prepaid meter rollout from 2018 to 2020. The country’s MAP programme saw significant strides being taken to close the gap that was identified in 2018 in the country.
The new National Mass Metering Programme, put in place by the federal government, unlike the MAP programme now means that the government will be providing customers with free meters. This change is to ensure that losses in the industry are mitigated, limit consumption estimation and act as a revenue protection measure.
Meters in the country have also helped utilities deal more constructively with meter tampering and electricity theft.
4. “The transition is now becoming real”
On the heels of South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement of increasing the embedded generation threshold to increase to 100MW, Davin Chown, who served on the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Energy, said: “The transition is now becoming real. The space that we find ourselves in with loadshedding means we do not have any more options. This is a fantastic announcement, now we need to get into implementation as we have often fallen short in this.”
Panelists also discussed the need for regulations and policy to match. There is a policy in place, now there is a need to remove the clauses that limit activity in the sector. Regulatory impediments need to be removed, as there is clearly a demand in the industry for alternative electricity sources, but regulations need to catch up with the policy that has been put in place.
Decentralisation of the system and ‘energy autonomy’ was also discussed with panelists stating that a centralised system is not ideal and having smaller micro-producers might be more conducive.
Catch up on all the sessions, which were recorded.
Day three of the event saw the Clarion Events programme Initiate focus on youth and SMMEs to show us a glimpse of where the energy systems of the future will go.
Engineering your future – student success matters! is a series of interviews that played throughout the day with the South African Institute of Electrical Engineers (SAIEE) about managing the lack of electrical engineers across Africa and crowdfunding company Feenix about the work they do to support students financially. GreenCape spoke about how they are using the Green Outcomes Fund as a means of Catalysing the green economy for SMMEs.
The day started with a session entitled TID rollover: The time is now. The STS Associations sponsored this talk about STS compliant meters, which will reject tokens generated after 24 November 2024 as old tokens. How then do users of the technology implement a rollover programme to ensure business continuity post the D-Date?
Despite a challenging environment and a large number of unmetered or unregistered consumers, Nigerian Distribution Companies are starting to see a turnaround in the management of their non-technical losses. Conlog discussed their experiences in this field in a session on Nigeria’s metering sector – an update.
Future tech and energy systems were discussed during four different sessions during this third and final day of the event.
An interview with Lucy Electric on the digitalisation of Africa’s power systems took us back to the theme of the 5Ds in an overt way; a panel discussion The role of Africa in the global hydrogen-generation market looked at not only what if but also what is happening right now; an interview on The role of LPG in Africa’s energy transformation built on a talk from day one; and training session Fundamentals of PV Systems with Energy Storage looked at the technicalities of incorporating battery energy storage systems into solar PV technology.
Longi Solar took the broader view, hosting a roundtable on How solar PV is changing the commercial and industrial energy landscape in Africa. While regulations may differ from country to country across the continent, the bottom line for C&I customers is it makes business sense to source reliable electricity and sometimes this means making your own. This business imperative is having a decided influence on the C&I energy landscape in Africa. Find out more.