Energy expert Chris Yelland warned that South Africa could be in serious trouble thanks to Eskom’s electricity shortage – with no short-term solutions to remedy the problem.
On Sunday Eskom announced that South Africans could expect rolling blackouts countrywide due to a loss of capacity at its Majuba power station in Mpumalanga. The loss of capacity comes after the collapse of a coal storage silo at Majuba.
Speaking to Fin24, Yelland said that the “tightness” of Eskom’s electricity capacity was caused by delays in the completion of the Medupi and Kusile power stations.
These two coal-fired power stations can each produce 4,800 megawatts of electricity, which would have relieved the pressure on South Africa’s power grid.
“The reality is that these two power stations are running four years late,” Yelland said.
“As a result of this Eskom has been forced to reduce its usual maintenance regime because it simply does not have enough excess capacity for maintenance.”
He said that any further unforeseen incidents, like the silo collapse at the Majuba power station, will spell serious trouble for South Africa.
Yelland added that there are no short-term solutions for Eskom’s electricity problems. “The solution is more generation capacity to feed a growing economy,” said Yelland.