2016 SANEA Energy Awards Announced

Recipients of the 2016 SANEA Energy Awards & the SANEDI/RECORD Renewable Energy Research Excellence (RERE) Awards announced!


The recipients of the 2016 SANEA / SANEDI ENERGY AWARDS were announced at a prestigious awards ceremony and banquet hosted by Brian A Statham, Chairman of the South African National Energy Association (SANEA). This gala event reflected the significance of the both the awards and the recipients. In his keynote address, Statham paid tribute to the many men and women who are striving on a daily basis to ensure that South Africa enjoys a stable and secure energy future. "SANEA's Vision of 'Energy People Working Together' is alive as we come together to congratulate these winners.”

The South African National Energy Development Institute (SANEDI) has again collaborated with SANEA in recognizing South Africans and their achievements, specifically by promoting awards in the research and innovation sectors. The 2016 SANEDI/RECORD Renewable Energy Research Excellence (RERE) Awards were also presented at the event.

“It is important for all of us to stretch the boundaries. If South Africa is to be recognized as a leading country, we have to go beyond the range of normal expectations. Through exceptional performance we can demonstrate what is possible; we can set the standard for a new reality that will deliver the social and economic development necessary for South Africans to enjoy a great future. Those who are being recognized tonight have embarked on this journey. They have set the benchmark for a new reality. They are an inspiration to us all.  We acknowledge and salute their efforts in the belief that their achievements will inspire others", said Statham.


Dr Willie de Beer, Energy Sector Strategic Advisor received the 2016 SANEA Energy Award in recognition of his ongoing contribution to the Energy Sector in South Africa, the role model he has provided and the success he has achieved. He is a person who fully espouses the SANEA vision of “Energy People Working Together” in all that he has achieved, and continues to do, in a career that spans some 45 years of service to the industry. His name is ubiquitous in the energy sector and his contribution is acknowledged from a myriad of industry stakeholders ranging from young graduates that he mentors, through to CEO’s of energy companies and the Minister of Energy.

(Dr Willie de Beer, Willie de Beer & Associates – 082 338 0854 / wj.debeer@yahoo.com)


Two Awards were presented in the 2016 SANEA Energy Project category, namely:

Acwa Power Solafrica Bokpoort CSP (Pty) Ltd was awarded for their concentrated solar thermal power plant (CSP) project which was part of round 2 of the REIPPPP. Two specific features of this project resulted in them being nominated in this category. Firstly, a change in the design which enables the plant to operate as a baseload facility and secondly, the successful manner in which the socio-economic commitments of the project are being met. The award was presented to Nandu Bhula, Deputy Managing Director (Southern Africa): Acwa Power.

(Nandu Bhula, Deputy MD (Southern Africa): Acwa Power – 011 722 4122 / 083 235 1928 / nbhula@acwapower.com)

Unlimited Energy and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory were awarded for their collaboration between a local consulting company and a world renowned research centre which resulted in legislation being passed by the Department of Trade and Industry in March 2016 which will cap the standing losses for a 150 litre geyser over a 24-hour period at 1.38 kWh (from 2.59kWh). This will save 3.82 TWh of electricity by 2030 as a conservative estimate. 1 TWh is equal to the sustained power of 114MW for a period of one year. The award was presented to Theo Covary, Managing Director: Unlimited Energy.

(Theo Covary, MD: Unlimited Energy - 011 447 1580 / 084 224 3000 / theo@unlimitedenergy.co.za)


Mfundo Mahlase, Rural Economic Development Officer, Siyazisiza Trust received the 2016 SANEA Energy Education Award in recognition of his work as a climate change agent who strives towards contributing to a world that is sustainable. The work that Mfundo does with energy education in rural and impoverished communities is around energy conservation and management. This means facilitating the understanding of the sources of energy, (renewable and non-renewable) to ensure that people adopt the best sustainable source of energy to use at home, school and work. Mfundo’s work and the contribution at grass roots level, with minimal support, is what this award acknowledges.

(Mfundo Mahlase, Siyazisiza Trust – 079 024 7886 / mmi.mahlase@gmail.com)

A Highly Commended Recognition was presented to the Eskom Power Plant Engineering Institute (EPPEI) at the University of Cape Town in this category. The EPPEI was founded in 2012 with the goal of creating specialist engineers within the power industry. At present the EPPEI is made up of eight Specialisation Centres (SC) at six universities who in turn partner with a developing university. This nomination was made in recognition of their contribution to the broader academic community that EPPEI operates within.

(Dr Titus Mathe, Eskom Holdings SOC Limited – 083 290 1416 / mathezt@eskom.co.za)


Eternity Power Thermal Harvesting – Vuselela Energy received the 2016 RECORD RERE Commercial Application Award in recognition of the novel adaptation of technology used to generate electricity from geothermal heat sources. The Eternity Power Thermal Harvesting™ plant is a global first of its kind, clean energy power plant based at the Anglo American Platinum Waterval Smelting complex near Rustenburg in the North West Province. The Thermal Harvesting™ plant captures waste heat from the converter cooling circuit at the Anglo Converting Process to generate up to 4.3MW of clean electricity, which is used by the Waterval smelter for its internal power consumption.

(Vernon Harding, Director: Environmental & Energy, EPS – 083 257 8683 / vernon.harding@eps.za.com)


Imke Meyer was presented the 2016 RECORD RERE Young Researcher Award. Imke studied the Agulhas current as a potential source for renewable energy for her MEng which she completed cum laude whilst she was employed as a Research Engineer at Stellenbosch University Centre for Renewable and Sustainable Energy Studies from 2013 to 2015. This work has also led to a publication in a peer reviewed international journal whilst completing her MEng degree. Besides her MEng studies, Imke was also involved in a number of other renewable energy projects including the development in an online GIS based tool to prospect for wind energy sites in KZN as well as making a contribution to the feasibility study of over 1 MW of Rooftop PV at the V&A Waterfront.

(Imke Meyer, Mott McDonald – 082 920 2831 / imke.meyer@mottmac.com)

A Highly Commended Recognition was presented to Toyosi Craig in this category for his work on his MEng, the title of his thesis being: "A Stand-alone High-Temperature (250 °C) Parabolic Dish Solar Cooker for African Conditions". Not only has he shown a thorough understanding of the many aspects of engineering required for the manufacture and design of a parabolic dish solar cooker but he also adapted these in order to optimise them for African conditions. Not only did he complete his thesis within the minimum prescribed time frame of two years, but also presented three full length international conference papers during this time period.

(Toyosi Craig, Stellenbosch University – 074 855 5132 / 18623786@sun.ac.za)

ISSUED ON BEHALF OF:    Brian A Statham, Chairman: SANEA

MORE INFORMATION:         Sarita Cronjé

                                               083 325 6716


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