Browsing by Author "Brent, Alan Colin"
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- ItemThe correlation between energy cost share, human, and economic development : using time series data from Australasia, Europe, North America, and the BRICS nations(MDPI, 2018) Roberts, Ryan; Musango, Josephine Kaviti; Brent, Alan Colin; Heun, Matthew KuperusThis paper investigates how a change in a region’s energy cost share (ECS), a ratio of a region’s energy expenditure as a fraction of its gross domestic product (GDP), affects the region’s social and economic development. Nations from four regions of the world, namely Australasia, Europe, North America, and the BRICS nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) were chosen for this study. Using time series data from the period of 1978 to 2010, the annual ECS of each country was compared to the year-on-year GDP change, as well as the components of the human development index (HDI). High ECS values were seen to correlate with low economic development. The existence of an ECS threshold was found in 14 of the 15 countries, for all the regions, and for the worldwide analysis, with very strong correlation coefficients obtained for periods of high ECS. New to this field of research, this study also investigated the effects of ECS on gross national income (GNI) per capita change, as well as the effects of 0, 1, 2, and 3 year lags. This investigation found that ECS has a very strong correlation to GNI per capita change, which was much stronger than the correlation between ECS and GDP change. The effects of ECS on social and economic development occurred after varying time lags, and it is unique to each country and region. Regions with similar ECS dynamics were identified, with possible reasons for the similarities being provided.
- ItemImplications of biofuel production in the Western Cape province, South Africa : a system dynamics modelling approach(University of Cape Town, Energy Research Centre, 2017) Jonker, Willem; Brent, Alan Colin; Musango, Josephine Kaviti; De Kock, ImkeENGLISH ABSTRACT: The national government instated a mandatory blending policy to facilitate the uptake and establishment of a biofuels sector in South Africa. Uncertainty exists, however, regarding the implications and effects of producing biofuels within the Western Cape province, as part of a strategy of the province to transition to a green economy. This investigation was carried out as an effort to simulate the biofuel production within the Western Cape under certain project and policy considerations. A system dynamics model was developed to identify key strategic intervention points that could strengthen the business case of biofuel production. The model showed a feasible business case for bioethanol production, with the best case showing an internal rate of return of 23% (without government subsidy), and an emissions reduction of 63% when compared with coal. It is recommended that special consideration be given to the location of bioethanol production facilities, as operational costs can be minimised by incorporating invasive alien land-clearing schemes as part of the bioethanol production. The model further showed that medium-to-large-scale biodiesel production in the province is not feasible under the given model assumptions, as the positive effects of local biodiesel production do not justify the required government subsidy of ZAR 4.30 per litre. It is recommended that a different approach be investigated, where multiple on-site small-scale biodiesel production facilities are used, thus utilising multiple feedstock options and minimising capital expenditure.
- ItemInvestigating a green economy transition of the electricity sector in the Western Cape Province of South Africa : a system dynamics approach(Southern African Institute for Industrial Engineering, 2016) Oosthuizen, Juan; Brent, Alan Colin; Musango, Josephine Kaviti; De Kock, Imke H.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The Western Cape Government in South Africa has identified the concept of a green economy as a way to transform the Province’s economy to one that is more sustainable from an economic, social, and environmental perspective. System dynamics modelling was used to develop a better understanding of the implications of different green economy policies and investments in the electricity sector of the Western Cape Province. The results suggest that continuing on the current policy path would increase the gap between demand and supply, increase the carbon footprint of the electricity sector, and not provide growth in employment in the sector. Strategic green economy investments are therefore expected to impact positively on a number of indicators across a number of sectors.
- ItemInvestigating the financial close of projects within the South African renewable energy independent power producer procurement programme(Southern African Institute for Industrial Engineering, 2014-11) Pieters, Ian; Lotz, Marco; Brent, Alan ColinSouth Africa may have a generation capacity shortage in the near future. The Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) is playing an important role in creating generation capacity to fulfil future demand requirements. This investigation focused primarily on identifying the problems that have been experienced with projects in the programme (e.g., to reach financial close). The research showed that there is good alignment between the requirements in the request for proposals and those from financiers. Several issues caused delays in projects reaching financial close. However, respondents to this study indicated that the REIPPPP is well thought out and that several problems are being addressed successfully.
- ItemAn investigation into the challenges of transdisciplinary R&D : values, culture and the case of the BIOSSAM project(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2012-03) Brent, Alan Colin; Swilling, Mark; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences. School of Public Leadership.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The emerging classification of Sustainability-oriented Innovation Systems places an emphasis on the social elements of change, as well as the technological. However, sustainability-oriented problems are too vast for one person or discipline to comprehend; thus people tend to want to collaborate, meaning they form teams. As a further extension to address sustainability-oriented problems, there is an increasing emphasis on transdisciplinary research and development (R&D) efforts, whereby co-production transgresses boundaries, and science becomes visible before it becomes certain. To reach the objectives of transdisciplinary R&D efforts will require two key concepts: the gathering of information from experts, namely knowledge transfer; and making connections between them, namely knowledge integration. Nevertheless, challenges have been noted in terms of academic tribes that impede teamwork, and, importantly, the lack of combined thought and action in R&D. This research, which is compiled as two journal articles, explored the collaboration, between disciplines, that has been described as the means of meeting the requirements of transdiscplinary R&D to identify, structure, analyse and deal with specific problems in such a way that it can: grasp the complexity of problems; take into account the diversity of life-world and scientific perceptions of problems; link abstract and case-specific knowledge; and develop knowledge and practices that promote what is perceived to be the common good. However, the latter brings into question how values and culture influence collaboration and thus transdisciplinary R&D efforts. The first article set out to investigate, from a literature analysis, how the culture and values of individuals in a transdisciplinary R&D team, as well as those of the organisation, determine the potential success or failure of the R&D effort. A conceptual framework is derived based on the theories of complexity, as it relates to knowledge management, learning within organisations, cognitive and behavioural approaches to culture and values, and communication. The framework also builds on previous research that has been conducted with respect to the management of transdisciplinary R&D. The second article then utilises the introduced conceptual framework for an in-depth investigation of a case study in the bioenergy field. The R&D project, which spanned over three years in South Africa, required a transdisciplinary team of engineers and scientists of various fields to collaborate with stakeholders outside the R&D team. The case emphasises that the lack of disciplines to recognize, understand and incorporate values and culture into R&D practices will lead to project failure; pre-empting and managing expectations of social change (often) far outweigh the necessity for technological change. A number of recommendations are thus made to improve R&D practices.
- ItemA literature review on the potential of renewable electricity sources for mining operations in South Africa(Energy Research Centre, 2016-05) Votteler, Roman Gunter; Brent, Alan ColinSouth 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.
- ItemUsing a system dynamics modelling process to determine the impact of eCar, eBus and eTruck market penetration on carbon emissions in South Africa(MDPI, 2020) Pillay, Nalini Sooknanan; Brent, Alan Colin; Musango, Josephine Kaviti; Van Geems, FrancoisENGLISH ABSTRACT: The complexities that are inherent in electricity value chains are non-linear in nature and they require unconventional modelling methods, such as system dynamics. This paper provides an overview of the system dynamics method applied for obtaining an understanding of the impact of electric-bus, -car, and -truck market penetration on carbon emissions in South Africa, through the development of the electric mobility simulator (eMobiSim). Two scenarios were tested. The World Reference scenario was based on a market penetration of 22% eCars, 19% eTrucks, and 80% eBuses and the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) scenario was based on 2.38% eCars, 1.79% eTrucks, and 12% eBuses. The results indicate that the World Reference scenario is the most optimistic, with a 12.33% decrease in carbon emissions in the transport sector and an increase of 4.32% in the electricity sector. However, if the economic structure that is specific to South Africa is to be considered and the GDP scenario is run, then there would only be a 1.77% decrease of carbon emissions in the transport sector and an increase of 0.64% in the electricity sector. Although the eCar market penetration produces the highest reduction in carbon emissions, the volumes that are required are large and other factors, such as price parity and affordability in the various income deciles, would have to be considered in determining whether this volume is achievable.
- ItemUsing an adapted system dynamics approach to determine the linkage between electric vehicle market penetration and affordability(South African Institute for Industrial Engineering, 2018) Pillay, Nalini Sooknanan; Brent, Alan Colin; Musango, Josephine KavitiThis paper focuses on an adapted process for system dynamics modelling based on industry experience and the successful implementation of system dynamics models within an electricity utility. The modelling process was demonstrated using a case study of battery electric vehicle (BEV) market penetration in South Africa and its substitution of internal combustion engine vehicle, as a function of affordability based on real disposable income. The results indicate that South Africans are living beyond their “income” constraints and purchasing far more vehicles than what their disposable income allows, with the situation worsening over time. The Gauteng province will have the largest potential to absorb BEVs (81,123) and the highest impact on residential electricity consumption (an additional 4,291 GWh) whilst the lowest is the Northern Cape province with 5,140 BEVs (an equivalent of 272 GWh). However, if disposable income is used as a parametric to determine the affordability of BEVs then there may be 80% less than the expected number of BEVs in terms of market penetration. To benefit from a reduction in carbon emissions in the transport sector, a renewables heavy supply mix would be required else there is not much benefit with South Africa’s current coal heavy supply mix.