Advertise with fastmoving.co.za
 
 

Eskom warns of high risk of blackouts
Eskom warns of high risk of blackouts

Eskom warns of high risk of blackouts

FMCG SUPPLIER NEWS

fin24 - Jan 10th 2012, 09:13

Cape Town - Eskom has warned of a "very high" risk of rolling blackouts around the country, but was doing everything it could to avert it.
 

"We are working very closely with our large customers to see if they can reduce their load... but the risk is very high. We are doing our utmost to avoid it," spokesperson Hilary Joffe said on Monday.

Power outages were a possibility because of planned maintenance, an increase in unplanned maintenance and an ever increasing demand for power.

"Summer is always a time when we do maintenance and take advantage of lower demand. The maintenance is more this year than previous years as we are tackling a backlog.

"We are experiencing quite a lot of unplanned maintenance. We are not getting performance from our generating plants. There are also quite a lot of technical problems which are cutting supply further."

Joffe said demand for power had increased as people returned to work, forcing Eskom to use emergency power reserves.

She urged people to find ways to reduce their electricity usage.

The Cape Chamber of Commerce said on Monday that although it appreciated the notice given by Eskom, the possibility of rolling blackouts was unacceptable.

"Eskom advised us shortly after noon today [Monday] that there was a possibility of load shedding in various parts of the country, including the Western Cape, from tonight and lasting through to February," chamber president Michael Bagraim said.

"Basic scenario planning should be in place. For the country's power supply to possibly be prejudiced in this way, at this time, and this economic climate is just not acceptable."

Bagraim said the government kept demanding that businesses increased jobs, but this was only possible if they could operate in the first place.

Tight supply

Joffe warned the country's power supply would be tight until the completion of its two power stations, Medupi and Kusile. Kusile, being built in Emalahleni, Mpumalanga, was expected to add 4800 megawatts to the power grid on completion in 2017.

The Medupi power station in Lephalale, Limpopo, would add another 4800 megawatts of coal-powered energy. It was expected to be completed by 2015, although Eskom had warned there could be a delay due to problems with a boiler contractor.

due to problems with a boiler contractor.

Meanwhile the AIM news agency has reported that South Africa has asked Hidroelectrica de Cahora Bassa (HCB), the company that operates the Cahora Bassa dam on the Zambezi river in western Mozambique, to increase its power supply quota.

Zimbabwe has also asked for its quota to be increased. Zambia, Malawi and Swaziland had all expressed a desire to buy electricity from HCB.

Mozambique's publicly owned electricity company Electricidade de Moambique (EDM) meanwhile had asked for its quota to be increased from 400 to 500 megawatts.

HCB chairperson Paulo Muxanga was quoted by AIM as saying that increasing EDM's quota would mean negotiating with one of HCB’s other major clients, such as Eskom or Zimbabwe's Zesa, to reduce their quota.

The Cahora Bassa dam’s maximum generating capacity is 2075 megawatts - five turbines, each capable of producing 415 megawatts. 

Related News

South Africa is one of the riskiest places to invest in the world
18/08/2015 - 10:34
South Africa is one of the highest-risk countries in the world when it comes to investment, according to new data from Bank of America Merill Lynch.

SA Govt credit outlook 'stable'
14/08/2015 - 08:31
Cape Town - The credit outlook of the South African Government is stable, according to a credit opinion report issued by Moody's on Wednesday.

Load shedding for the next 18 months
07/08/2015 - 09:45
Load shedding will continue for the next 18 months, Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown said on Thursday, once again appealing to South Africans to save electricity.

SA state owned company set for record multi-billion rand loss
24/07/2015 - 11:10
The Democratic Alliance says government-owned petroleum oil and gas corporation, PetroSA cannot be allowed to follow the likes of other SOE’s such as Eskom, SAA, and SAPO, and degenerate into a financial black hole.

How much money Eskom says it needs to keep the lights on
23/06/2015 - 09:07
In its MYPD 3 Selective Reopener application hearing starting on Tuesday, Eskom’s acting CEO Brian Molefe will argue that an increase in tariffs will shorten load shedding and improve overall generation stability.