Interdict sought over Paleishuewel 80Mw Solar Power Plant

A press statement released by British based solar energy and manufacturing company, Electra Energy Holdings Ltd, confirms that the company is to petition the South African High Court for an interim interdict to halt construction of the proposed 82.5Mw solar plant at Paleisheuwel Western Cape. In its press statement, Electra alleges that there may have been fraudulent misrepresentation by persons at RE:RE capital (a company registered and doing business in South Africa).

Investigation has revealed that at this date references to RE:RE Capital that were readily accessible on the web, appear to have disappeared – including marketing information pertaining to the company and at least one of its directors. Coincidentally RE:RE Capital was investigated by Jonathan Deal in 2013 as part of a personal enquiry by Deal into the activities of Mr. Simon Lincoln Reader.

Simon Lincoln Reader

It can be confirmed that in the now defunct marketing spiel of RE:RE Capital, Simon Lincoln Reader was listed as CEO & Chief Investment Officer. The company was described as ‘a boutique private equity firm, founded in 2011, specialising in the financing, development and support of renewable energy. The marketing statement continued: ‘One of RE:RE Capital’s assets, the Paleisheuwel Solar Facility, located in the Cederberg Municipal Region… approximately 10km north of the agricultural support town of Paleisheuwel … The generation of renewable energy (solar photovoltaic) will subsequently provide the adjacent and neighbouring community with a source of clean, efficient and reliable energy.’  Marketing statement continued: ‘RE:RE Capital has sought to identify particular areas of additional assistance. One of the principle features of the development exists in the creation of local employment that will support and maintain the solar facility, yet another area has been identified – that of agricultural education, relevant to the development of communities with the intention of establishing an additional line of employment potential – a feature that will simultaneously serve to mitigate the minimal impacts upon agricultural potential the development makes. 

‘Through its networks, RE:RE Capital … has …  FAADA – The Forward Africa Agricultural Development Academy – that will partner locally with Rooibos  … to educate schools, communities and leaders about the future of agriculture [what about the bright future of shale gas] … nurturing a new generation of new farmers who will understand the benefits of renewable energy within the cycle of sustainable food production and security.’

The corporate intro continues: … ‘The addition of new industries is therefore critical to the employment factor – particularly industries with minimal environmental impact and who are, by mere virtue of structure, entirely sustainable. There are two critical tiers of thought … firstly, to create employment and, secondly, to enable structures that contribute to the protection of the agricultural industry. Coupled to both is the developing relationship between agriculture and renewable energy.

Under ‘stage 2’ of ‘Conceptualisation’ RE:RE’ corporate pitch clarified: ‘This will be the process whereby RE:RE Capital selects / invites academics, farmers, food, soil and sustainability experts, water and irrigation specialists, fauna and flora specialists, renewable energy companies and any other relevant party to submit presentations for consideration. And in Conceptualisation ‘2’ RE:RE Capital listed as ‘stage 5’ the goal  ‘The completion of the FAADA farm, owned and managed by a community / communities, that utilises only renewable energies in its production and irrigation techniques. 

The RE:RE Capital data wrapped up with emphasis that ‘The nature of RE:RE Capital’s business is partnerships: partnerships in the production of renewable energy, … RE:RE Capital understands the threats faced by agriculture … and, most importantly, cultivating the theme of sustainability  … Throughout the process undertaken thus far to the development of Paleisheuwel, RE:RE Capital has sought to express its interest in local employment. RE:RE Capital hopes that this initiative is met with the participation and support of the Western Cape Government’s Agricultural Department … ‘

The above extracts from the now missing data on RE:RE Capital can be accessed at  can be accessed at 

 Press Statement From Electra Energy Holdings

Electra Energy Holdings

Renewable energy, not fracking, is the best choice for California


José Luis Villegas /

A hydraulic-fracturing facility with working wells provides the backdrop for workers gathering potatoes in a Madera field in July.

Viewpoints: Renewable energy, not fracking, is the best choice for California

By Chris Paine and Craig Lewis
Special to The Bee
Published: Sunday, Aug. 11, 2013 – 12:00 am | Page 5E

A debate currently raging in the California Legislature will greatly influence the state’s economic and energy future. The oil and gas industry is lobbying hard to expand hydraulic fracturing – a dangerous process commonly known as fracking – into the Central Valley’sworld-class agricultural lands, and there’s no shortage of controversy over the projected impacts.

Unfortunately, the debate has fallen into the false choice between the economy and the environment. This is not the real choice at hand. Expanding the development of clean energy in California can drive sustained economic growth while also protecting the state’s vital agricultural and environmental resources.

The renewable energy industry has already proven itself a powerful and reliable economic driver in California. Since 1995, the clean energy economy has grown by more than 120 percent, 10 times more than California’s overall economic growth during the same period. Clean energy generation was in fact one of California’s few “recession resistant” industries that provided steady employment during the recent economic downturn. We have a real opportunity to spur additional innovation, private investment and job creation by accelerating the deployment of more clean energy.

Forward-thinking utilities in the state are realizing that smart energy policies can translate Californians’ increasing demand for renewable energy into significant economic growth. Earlier this year, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power unveiled its Clean LA Solar Initiative, which opens the energy market to broader participation by enabling individuals, organizations and businesses to build local solar projects and sell the energy produced to the utility.

The program has received huge interest. During the program’s opening week, the Department of Water and Power received applications to build more local solar projects than the entire program currently allows – highlighting a major economic opportunity to develop more local solar. If Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti follows through on his campaign pledge to expand the program to 600 megawatts, a UCLA study found his city would reap 18,000 new jobs and $2 billion in private investment.

Sacramento initiated a similar program with startling success in 2010. In just two years, theSacramento Municipal Utility District brought enough solar energy online to provide peak power to 100,000 homes without impacting electric rates. Extending Sacramento’s program across California would significantly increase the amount of cost-effective solar, thus creating tens of thousands of in-state jobs and spurring billions in private investment.

In contrast, fracking poses significant risks to our economy and our environment. To access oil stored in the Monterey shale, new and unproven techniques are required. Oil and gas companies inject water mixed with a cocktail of toxic chemicals, including known carcinogens, deep underground. While concrete casings are designed to contain these chemicals, there’s increasing evidence that many fail or will soon fail – releasing chemicals and unburned methane into our water, soil and air. This not only endangers human health but also threatens California’s agriculture industry, a central pillar of our economy.

The agricultural sector pumps $17 billion into the state’s economy each year and needs access to clean water for continued productivity. Fracking raises serious concerns about the long-term contamination of aquifers, which are the lifeblood for farmers in the Central Valley. Already, farmers there are initiating lawsuits due to contamination. With its promises of short-term economic gains, fracking unwisely endangers agriculture, one of our state’s most important industries.

Californians will be tied to today’s energy decisions for decades to come. The state can continue to grow its economy by building upon the proven success of renewable energy or can jeopardize its world-class agricultural lands by allowing the oil and gas industry to expand fracking operations across the Central Valley. Why accept the serious risks posed by fracking when the further development of clean energy is the only option that will bring lasting benefits?

Chris Paine is a Los Angeles-based filmmaker who directed “Who Killed the Electric Car?” and “Revenge of the Electric Car.” Craig Lewis is executive director of the Clean Coalition, a nonprofit clean-energy organization that is a leading advocate for clean local energy.