The custom-built EnergyDRIVE truck, a first of its kind in Africa, arrived in the Eastern Cape this week to teach learners about the benefits and uses of renewable energy technologies and is expected to engage with thousands of high school learners located close to wind farms. Cookhouse Wind Farm funded part of this road show and hosted a field trip for learners from Soqaqamba Secondary School, a local Cookhouse high school.
“The container features attractive interactive demonstration models which assist with understanding a range of renewable technologies, raises awareness of renewable power resources as well as addressing the important issues associated with climate change, bringing home the impact of environmental concerns that plague our country and the rest of the world,” explained Sizile Mabaso, Chief Community Operations Officer for Cookhouse Wind Farm.
Featuring a solar roof structure, biogas digester, photovoltaic panel display unit as well as a solar hot water display unit, the EnergyDRIVE teaches learners about the benefits and uses of renewable energy technologies. By the time it wraps up its visits across the provinces and circles back to KwaZulu Natal at the end of November, it will have engaged with over 2 500 high school learners across the country.
The Eastern Cape is home to more wind farms than any other province, making it an ideal first destination on the EnergyDRIVE’s route and the mobility of this custom-built vehicle makes it ideal to reach high schools situated within wind farm beneficiary communities. These communities are often located in areas that are not easily accessible and learners do not easily have access to information about these technologies.
The South African Wind Energy Association (SAWEA) partnered with the Durban University of Technology and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) to make this national educational road trip with the EnergyDRIVE possible. The mobile unit features a solar roof structure, biogas digester, photovoltaic panel display unit as well as a solar hot water display unit. The walls of the container are made up of a battery bank, photovoltaic components, a TV and display cupboards, making it an inspirational and experiential teaching aid.
Following its visit in the Eastern Cape, the EnergyDRIVE will head to Cape Town, where the vehicle will be exhibited at the WindAc Africa student workshop and at SARETEC, demonstrating the use of renewable energy technologies and promoting skills development options in renewable power, before arriving at the Windaba conference. The mobile unit will then depart for visits along the West Coast, make its way to the Northern Cape before circling back to KwaZulu Natal on 24 November.
2nd Floor, Fernwood House, The Oval, 1 Oakdale Road, Newlands, Cape Town, 7700
P O Box 23101, Claremont, 7735
Tel: +27 21 670 1400 (main switchboard)
Cookhouse Wind Farm Local Community Office:
12 Main Road, Cookhouse, 5820
Tel: +27 42 247 2961