Over 5000 power and water professionals from more than 60 countries (27 of them African) will meet in Cape Town this week for the annual African Utility Week at the Cape Town International Convention Centre, at what is the largest utility gathering of its kind on the continent. Eskom Chief Executive Brian Dames will deliver the keynote address during this year’s opening session. South Africa’s Water and Environmental Affairs Minister, Edna Molewa, will also address this session.
Power professional getting their hands dirty
African Utility Week will address many of the ongoing challenges that utilities on the continent grapple with says programme director Claire Volkwyn. “The day to day challenges of African utilities include getting the generation mix right so that they have the optimal balance of energy efficiency but also the maximum energy security that they can ensure. This year we have greatly expanded our practical offering for visitors with a selection of 60 free-to-attend, CPD-accredited technical workshops on the expo floor. The workshops offer practical take home solutions, demonstrations and practice installation opportunities for electricians, engineers and other power professionals in the metering, water, transmission and distribution, smart grids, hydro and renewable energy sectors.”
Utilities CEO Forum
The exclusive CEO Forum will bring together the utility heads from more than a dozen African countries such as Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Sudan and Uganda to discuss strategic goals, regional cooperation, utility reform and reputation management. Overcoming the challenges of financing projects is also on the agenda. Industry leaders in technology and engineering such as SAP, Symbion Power, Ernst & Young and MTN will have the exclusive opportunity to engage with these utility leaders.
Clean Power Africa
The co-located Clean Power Africa will give an overview of the role of renewable energy in the energy mix – focusing on hydro, wind and solar projects and opportunities across the African continent. It will gather major stakeholders in the renewable energy generation sector looking at feasible solutions to fulfill Africa’s generation capacity needs. Says Claire Volkwyn: “renewable energy sources need to play a vital role in increasing capacity worldwide. Not only are they necessary to create sustainable energy sources and reduce carbon emissions but they also help to create jobs.“ The event will also offer a unique site visit to three successful renewable energy projects in the Cape Town region including the Green Energy District in Montague Gardens with a state of the art manufacturing facility at AEG Power Solutions where over 60% of the components are locally sourced. Clean Power Africa delegates also have the opportunity to visit Africa’s largest rooftop solar installation at Vodacom in Century City. According to African Utility Week, this 500kw installation supplies 65% of the peak power required for the Vodacom site.