Eskom has announced it will move to Stage 1 load-shedding from Wednesday until Saturday morning.
“Load-shedding will be reduced to Stage 1 from 05:00 on Wednesday and will continue until 05:00 on Saturday as the generation system is still severely constrained,” the utility said.
Eskom stated it currently had 5,850MW of generation capacity out due to planned maintenance, while another 13,443MW of capacity was unavailable because of unplanned breakdowns and delays.
This has lead to the utility being unable to supply the country’s full electricity demand.
Eskom said its teams successfully returned four generation units at the Kusile, Grootvlei, Kriel, and Matla power stations on Monday, in addition to restoring generation from the Cahora Bassa line from Mozambique.
However, this was not sufficient to completely suspend load-shedding.
The company added it had experienced losses in generation capacity at Medupi, Arnot, and Komati power stations, with additional delays in the return to service of four other units.
This has prolonged the need to continue implementing load-shedding.
Eskom requested that the public would continue to use electricity sparingly as the system remained vulnerable and unpredictable.
“Eskom is working hard to return the units back to service as soon as possible,” the utility said.
Eskom CEO Andre De Ruyter yesterday outlined the state of Eskom’s electricity generation system, painting a bleak picture of load-shedding for the next few years.
De Ruyter stressed that Eskom would suffer a power shortfall for the next five years and the risk of load-shedding would remain as it continued to try and overhaul its ageing power plants to improve their reliability.
“Ladies and gentlemen, Eskom has to reiterate that there will continue to be an electricity supply shortfall of approximately 4,000MW over the next five years,” he said.
Significant changes to the power system which could alleviate this pressure include the expected completion of more power units at Kusile and Medupi this year, as well as the government’s speed in bringing independent emergency power onto the national grid.