Eskom says it may need to implement load shedding on Thursday evening (30 January), following delays in its maintenance schedule.
The group said that its system is under a lot of stress, with it being forced to use diesel generators to meet demand.
“Units that were expected to come back from maintenance were delayed, which led to diesel generators being used overnight,” it said.
“While we have adequate emergency reserves to supplement capacity during the day, we may have to implement load shedding this evening to augment diesel and water at our open cycle gas turbines and pumped storage schemes.”
Load shedding last hit in the first weeks of January.
Eskom says that it has managed to avoid load shedding since then – despite high levels of unplanned outages, sitting around 13,000MW – due to lower demand and adequate reserves.
According to experts, load shedding is expected to continue for the next two to three years at the very least, as Eskom moves to build new capacity, and government clears the way for independent producers to get on the grid.
However, this would require everything to go right in this regard – and doubts linger that government, state companies and the private sector will be able to work together.
The total economic impact of load shedding in South Africa could be as high as as R338 billion over the past 10 years, according to the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
Load shedding schedules
Customers can find their various load shedding schedules on their local metro or municipal websites, where applicable, or from Eskom directly.
For those living in South Africa’s major metros, here is where you can check to see when you will be hit:
- City of Johannesburg
- City of Ekurhuleni
- City of Tshwane
- City of Cape Town (PDF)
- Nelson Mandela Bay
- Buffalo City
For access to other load shedding schedules, Eskom has made them available on loadshedding.eskom.co.za.
Smartphone users can also download the app EskomSePush to receive push notifications when load shedding is implemented, as well as the times the area you are in will be off.