Category | Steel

Saldanha Works’ energy efficiency drive gets thumbs up from high level delegation

Themba Hlengani

Saldanha Works this week played host to a high level delegation led by the Swiss Confederation Ambassador to South Africa, Mr. Christian Meuwly and ArcelorMittal South Africa CEO, Nku Nyembezi-Heita, who were highly impressed with the Work’s Industrial Energy Efficiency Improvement project which has resulted in savings of around R90 million per year on reduced energy costs, while also generating approximately 70,000 tons of avoided greenhouse gas emissions per year.

The “Industrial Energy Efficiency Improvement in South Africa Project (IEE Project)” is funded by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), and UK’s Department of International Development (DFID). The project supports industries in using an Energy System Optimization (ESO) approach and Energy Management Systems (EnMS) as tools to achieve improved energy efficiency, under a framework of the newly released international Energy Management Standard ISO50001 (SANS/ISO50001).

ArcelorMittal Saldanha Works joined the IEE Project in 2010 in order to greatly improve their energy performance through the development and implementation of an Energy Management System for the plant. Saldanha Works later became a host plant for the IEE Project’s EnMS and different ESO Expert-Level training programmes.

The IEE Project has assisted Saldanha Works in a number of different ESO and general energy efficiency improvement disciplines over the past three years under the established EnMS. The high level visit was initiated to demonstrate the impact of the IEE Project’s training and other support activities in regard to the energy, financial and greenhouse gas emissions savings achieved to date, and to demonstrate potential benefits that establishing an EnMS and adopting an ESO approach to industrial process energy use could have on other ArcelorMittal South Africa facilities if implemented.

Ms Nyembezi-Heita told the delegation that she hopes the positive impact of the project and its lessons could be applied in other works outside Saldanha. “Energy is a huge cost for our company and we are initiating various energy efficiency programmes in other plants. I hope we can use some of these lessons here in areas like Vanderbijlpark and Newcastle,” she said.

Ambassador Meuwly said he was highly impressed with the impact of the project in Saldanha, and this was encouraging for the IEE project in general. “We work with a number of companies in this country and what was demonstrated to us is surely positive impact by the project.”

Other parties that participated in the site visit included the DTI, DIFD, National Cleaner Production Centre and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization(UNIDO).