The National Alternative Fuel Vehicle (AFV) Day Odyssey South Africa Special Event Partner, NGV2014 South Africa, conducted its Odyssey event as part of the conference November 17 20 in Johannesburg, South Africa. The conference sessions included discussions on the latest developments of the sector, including panel discussions on Finance, Investment, Research, and Promotion for NGV Use in Fleets and for the Establishment of New Refueling Stations.
Carel Snyman, Senior Manager: Green Transport, South Africa National Energy Development Institute acted as moderator. Speakers included Thembisile Salman, Senior Project Manager of Chemicals & Allied Industries at Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), and Thulebona Nxumalo, Executive Manager of Piped Gas Regulation at National Energy Regulator of South Africa.
Mr. Salman began with an overview of the 102 billion rand (roughly $8.8 billion dollar equivalent) funding provided in recent years by IDC to advance alternative fuel in South Africa. “Funding will be structured in a way that will suit the business’ needs most appropriately,” he said and gave as an example the investment in CNG Holdings, helping support the development of NGV industry and introduction of biogas and CNG-powered taxis and buses.
However, according to Salman, the alternative fuels industry should establish a regulatory body or association to address the lack of governmental policy and regulatory framework for the use of natural gas. Salman also spoke favorable of imposing road fuel taxes on gas as well as incentives for alternative fuels. He said that IDC has financed several pilot projects to demonstrate natural gas benefits for South Africa and to assist development of regulatory framework, and that it is currently supporting a process with various government departments to facilitate this growth.
Mr. Nxumalo, presented “Regulations and Requirements for Licensing of CNG/Biogas as a Vehicle Fuel.” His presentation included a regulated pipeline network for transmission and distribution, CNG infrastructure including fueling stations, and mobile storage facilities.
He stated that currentl regulatory framework entails construction of gas infrastructure; operation of gas facilities; trading in gas; and conversion of existing facilities into gas transmission, distribution or storage facilities. However, it does not entail the licensing of manufacturers of CNG cylinders; licenses for testing laboratories; licenses for CNG equipment installers and service providers; licenses for filling stations not issued by NERSA; licenses for sale of CNG equipment; and licensing of CNG vehicle manufacturers.
“As a result, it is necessary to amend the current regulations to include specific provisions regarding the use of CNG in vehicles and the development of industry standards for CNG/biogas in SA,” he added.
NGV2014 South Africa was held to boost the emerging NGV market in South Africa and in the African continent. NGV2014 was hosted by NGV Communications Group.