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  1. Current Water Affairs.

    i think it is not viable at the moment to go off grid with either water or electricity. In the case of water, we would also need a waste water treatment facility. But if our politicians keep going the way they do and the technology improves at the rate it does at the moment we will get there soon.
  2. Current Water Affairs.

    Now, after electricity CoCT proposes a water connection charge. " Key proposals for water and sanitation: a substantial increase in the water and sanitation tariffs a water step tariff change from 6 steps to 4 steps the introduction of fixed charge for water based on water meter size. " I think this business model will not work in the long term. It will lead to an inefficient bureaucracy in the generation and distribution of water and electricity (less incentive to sell the customer as much as possible). Can you imagine Woolies charges you a monthly fee even if you buy nothing. A better way would be to work out a partnership model with the private sector in the generation and distribution of water and electricity, with healthy competition and solid rules. As a result, the cost of water and electricity would come down and consumption would go up. If water and electricity prices keep going up as they do at the moment more and more customers will go off grid pushing the present system into a death spiral.
  3. Received this today from the CoCT: "You have been identified as an eligible customer that will move to the proposed Home User tariff on 1 July 2018." The proposed home user tariff is R150/Month and 185.32 c/kWh. Do you think it will be implemented? Would be bad news for customers with PV systems and low electricity consumption
  4. Current Water Affairs.

    true. Trick is to act in time before it is to late. My heart is still in the wait and see camp. I think it is to soon to sell and leave (although my brain tells me that I should go now) . To only sell and live in a rented house is no option for me. The reason is clear. South Africa had and still has by far the highest percentage of non African people with a totally different mentality than the indigenes people in Africa. I am not a racist, but the European mentality is simply more suitable for democracy, hard work and progress. If this however ultimately leads to happier people I am not sure. I believe South Africa will slowly move towards the African average in terms of development and African/European population percentage. But Africa is also undoubtedly slowly improving. Our generation will probably never see a prosperous Africa but future generations will.
  5. Current Water Affairs.

    I agree with that. I think it would also be prudent to start reducing the non movable assets like land and property we have. Should it collapse like in Zimbabwe we are at least not going to loose all the money.
  6. Current Water Affairs.

    you basically confirm, that like electricity we have no option than to introduce our own back up system if we want to have enough water all the time. It is sad what has become of our country . I think time for plan B is here.
  7. Current Water Affairs.

    did any of you ever see a medium and long term plan for the water supply situation in the greater Cape Town area? Are you confident that if there is such a plan that it will be implemented and that we will NEVER have to flush our toilets with buckets again? Until I see a realistic plan and feasible implementation commitment I am not convinced. As far as I am concerned there is absolutely no reason why we should not always have all the water we need and want. The technology is available to provide this without any pollution and at an affordable price.
  8. I have joined "Team South Africa". The station Name is "House Wittwer". I could not yet figure out how to automatically upload from My Goodwe inverter. In the meantime I will do it manually.
  9. Excess solar to heat water

    Hi Chris, are you still using this method of diverting excess PV power? I would be interested to know what your experience is. What did turn out to be the best voltages (for LA batteries) to switch the geyser on and off?
  10. Excess solar to heat water

    thanks for the help maxomill. as a first step i will as you suggest put timers on the geysers and see how it works. The only concern I have is that on a cloudy day it will discharge my batteries to much.
  11. Excess solar to heat water

    thread is quite old. Is there any new developments how to divert (automatically) excess PV capacity? On a sunny day I have about 10 kWh/day spare capacity. My system is (still illegally) grid tied and programmed to not export power to the grid. There is a lot of diverters on the market, but as far as I could figure out they all use the power flowing into the grid as a signal when to start diverting. My system never exports anything to the grid, so I think this method will not work for me. Goodwe (I have a GW5048D-ES) does not yet have any home energy management products like for example SolarEdge. In summer I would like to use the excess capacity for the aircons and in winter to boost the hot water solar generation output (House has in addition to the 4.4 kW PV system 14 x 2.5m2 flat plate solar water collectors and a 4000 liter hot water storage tank. Hot water is used for geysers and the hydronic underfloor heating system). I also have a 20 kWh battery bank. At the moment I do all the diverting manually.
  12. I agree with Plonkster that you can safely oversize the panel capacity. In addition of the inverter being able to lower the output from the panels another reason is that because of temperature/dirt of the panels and losses in the electrical circuit you will usually not achieve the published capacity of the panels.
  13. Current Water Affairs.

    here is my proposal how to avoid water day zero and NEVER ever get into this situation again: short term: 1. force government to declare state of emergency (to avoid any legal problems). Have to be creative how to do this. Western cape has a lot of leverage! Big portion of South African GDP! 2. Identify and publish all big users of water (pipes/sluices/boreholes) removing water from major western cape water storage locations). 3. Appoint and publish names of managers for each big “pipe/sluice/borehole” removing water from major western cape water storage locations. 3. Define and communicate maximum daily quota of water allowed to be removed by each big pipe/sluice/borehole from major western cape water storage locations (this has to be done in an autocratic way. We have no time for lengthy democratic debates. Hence the need for a state of emergency. 4. Monitor, manage and publish consumption for each big pipe/sluice/borehole on a 24 hour cycle and switch off supply after quota has been reached (put facilitates in place to enforce law enforcement to avoid unrest and distribute emergency supply of water) 5. Have daily action center meeting with the managers of every big pipe/sluice/borehole drawing water from all major western cape water storage location and review balanced scorecard and corrective action plans and publish result of meeting. 6. Request each manager of “his/her big pipe/sluice/borehole” to define, monitor and manage his/her target (with balanced scorecard and corrective action plans publicly published). The manager of the “Cape Town city user pipe” could for example manage consumption in the following way: - set weekly targets for every household/business based on the quota allocated to him/her - request each household/business to report weekly water consumption and if target has not been met why not - establish a task force to monitor and follow up on households/businesses not reporting or not meeting targets - publish consumption of all users “in his pipe” and corrective action taken by the taskforce how to bring noncompliant users in line with the target 7. Identify and publish (with Names of the responsible manager) all existing and possible short term augmentation projects. Review status and corrective action plans in daily action center and publish results. medium and long term: 8. Compile implement and regularly review and publish a long term strategy how to provide a sustained water supply to the population of the western cape (strategy and reviews to be endorsed and approved by independent bodies like engineers or universities) 8. lobby to change the law to make water resource management in the western cape the responsibility of the province instead of the government.
  14. Eskom collapse?

    The more electricity generated with PV and Wind the bigger the need for storage will become. Fortunately the cost of locally producing and storing electricity with renewable energy is coming down all the time. Soon it will be cheaper than buying it from the big power producers. More and more of the traditional power stations (the coal ones first) will disappear. If the Eskom's of this world are not adapting they will not be able to survive. Some villages, towns and cities will become self sufficient. A city like Cape Town with lots of sunshine and wind could on day easily become independent from Eskom. It could look something like this: - most residential houses and businesses have (with incentives) from the city installed enough PV and hot water generation and storage capacity to cover 80% of their demand - The city will provide the rest (outsourced to private companies) with its own Wind, PV and hydroelectric power generation capacity. For emergency back up hydrogen powered gas turbine generators will be used. - Because of the intermitted generation of electricity there will be a big requirement for electricity usage adaptation and storage. This will be done by producing excess water with the desalination plant, and by pumping water into storage dams high up in the mountains. What do you think? With our politicians it will probably not happen soon!
  15. Balancing series connected lead acid batteries

    thanks for the quick great help. Much appreciated.