Solar : The Intelligent Pursuit of Sustainability

NASTEP - New Age Solar Technology Environmental Products

Nast Environmental Projects (PTY) Ltd (NASTEP) is a South African importing, marketing, distribution and installation company for Himin thermal and solar products. NASTEP (Pty) Ltd has secured the sole South African distribution rights for Himin Solar Energy products. The company markets the extensive range of Himin solar and thermal products, which include a range of thermal geysers and collectors, photovoltaic panels, a range of solar lights - traffic, garden and streetlights and Win-Pin Energy saving glass. NASTEP's range of Himin geysers varies from complete stand alone units, suitable for both flat and pitched roofs, to integrated split systems and heat collectors which can be fitted to existing electrical geysers.

Theo Rautenbach and Nico van Wyk established NASTEP (Pty) Ltd in 2007 when Van Wyk returned from China with the licence to market Himin's solar products in Southern and Sub-Saharan Africa. The company is currently negotiating and finalising several large contracts, some of which are in the affordable and low cost housing market.

Investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency is essential to reduce the negative economic, social and environmental impacts of energy production and consumption in Southern Africa. The extent to which solar energy and other sustainable options are utilised will determine the future of local and global environmental sustainability. Probably the most important factor that will contribute to sustainability will be the creation of enabling environments for renewable energy.

"Amid the growing demand for clean energy options NASTEP (Pty) Ltd's mission is to contribute to a sustainable and enabling environment for renewable energy by providing a range of responsible, integrated solar solutions for Sub-Saharan Africa. Forming a major part of these solutions is the supply and installation of the Himin range of solar products," says MD Theo Rautenbach. "An important aspect of NASTEP's mission is a firm commitment to good corporate governance and conducting its business in a dependable, market competitive, environmentally responsible manner. The company strives to consistently provide excellence in all aspects of its operations."

The impact of global warming is having a drastic effect on climate change and the world economies. This has resulted in authorities world wide seeking renewable energy solutions and a massive effort has been and still needs to be made to avert disaster.

"At NASTEP, we recognize that being a viable business enterprise creates opportunities for us to deliver positive contributions to sustainability and the communities where we operate in Southern Africa," adds NASTEP director and co-founder Nico van Wyk who oversees NASTEP sales in Africa south of the Sahara. "The sustainability challenge is a defining issue for the twenty-first century. In terms of pursuing sustainability, in an intelligent manner, it is essential that those who have the ability and power to effect and enforce change need to be constantly cognisant of the fact that how they grapple with that challenge will have not only a significant impact on the world’s environment, but will also determine whether they themselves, as nations, can prosper and sustain their way of life."

The Himin Solar Energy Group was established in 1995 in the 'Solar Valley' in Dezhou ('the Solar City') in China and the company has become a multifaceted leader in the global solar energy industry. The company integrates research and development, testing, production and marketing of a range of solar products and technologies.

Himin Solar Energy group is currently the largest producer of solar water heaters and vacuum tubes in the world with an annual production capacity of 50% of the world’s annual solar thermal production. The company produces more than two million square metres of solar energy every year. The energy generated is equivalent to that of 20 million tons of coal per year, without the associated environmental pollution.

Himin's Solar Energy Technical Testing Centre includes 15 large laboratories with more than 320 test procedures for raw materials, parts, component machinery and entire machines. Himin's testing standards are significantly more advanced than those of the industry standard. The company's simulation tests can imitate extreme outdoor environments, enabling Himin to define realistic product parameters and establish the highest quality systems. The founding and transparency of the Himin Testing Centre has enabled the solar industry to move towards greater professionalism, systemisation and standards, symbolising Himin's growth and reputation in solar technology.

One of South Africa's many new challenges is the supply of electricity to homes and businesses. The rapidly growing economy and resultant growth in infrastructure has created an enormous demand on the national grid. One of the solutions to this energy crisis is solar energy, a renewable resource that is available almost everywhere on earth. The sun emits enough energy to cater for 10,000 times the world energy demand in one year.

A Himin solar geyser can save you 40% to 60% of the normal cost of a monthly electricity bill. Solar hot water geysers have the added advantage of significant environmental and other benefits: free, clean and reliable energy from the sun, constant supply of hot water even when there are power cuts or shortages, substantial short and long term financial savings, no carbon emissions which reduces the effect of global warming. Solar technology is a way of reducing your carbon footprint by reducing global emissions.

The Himin Solar Energy Group's product range includes various models of thermal geysers, which incorporate the unique Himin 3-Hi vacuum tubes, photovoltaic panels for electricity generation and a range of solar, street, garden and traffic lights and Win-Pin Energy saving glass.

What differentiates Himin in global and local markets is its internationally recognised and exceptionally high standards of quality and durability. The Himin range conforms to the following prestigious and respected high quality international standards: the ISO 9001:2000; the geysers have been awarded the European CE mark, manufactured from only the best quality materials; inner tanks are manufactured from SUS304 stainless steel; photovoltaic panels carry the European TUV mark; the geysers’ heat collectors carry the German DIN mark and all Himin products carry five-year guarantees. The products are currently undergoing SABS testing and approval is imminent. The tubes has already passed the SABS hail test and the high pressure geyser have already successfully passed the first phase of the SABS compliancy test.

NASTEP (Pty) Ltd has established 19 franchises countrywide. Each franchise is able to meet every need and requirement, from advice and a full assessment of residential and commercial conditions, to the installation and commissioning of Photovoltaic Plaza farms.

"Sustainability seeks to achieve a balance between people and their environment while simultaneously taking into account the need for people to make a living," says Rautenbach. "In the medium to long-term, there will be no prosperity without sustainability and it is being increasingly recognized that a commitment to sustainability will help us lock in prosperity."

"Once you take a broader view of sustainability it becomes clear that our generation has the opportunity to improve our way of life, our standard of living and the state of our environment by putting sustainability at the heart of our thinking and decision making."

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