South Africa: Eskom Announces Stage 6 Blackout Until Further Notice

News Flash

  • South Africa’s state owned power utility, Eskom, has announced via their Twitter account  that loadshedding will be escalated to Stage 6 during the night, starting at 21:00 tonight until 05:00 on Wednesday morning.
  • Stage 6 nightly loadshedding will then be implemented at 16:00 -05:00 until further notice.
  • Stage 6 means that the population will be exposed to six hours of blackouts daily. 

The utility announced that seven units tripped today, of which three have returned to service. In addition, the return to service of three other units has been delayed. Unit 1 of Matla Power Station will be shut down tonight to repair a boiler tube leak.

Eleven generators amounting to 5 084MW of capacity suffered breakdowns since Tuesday morning, further reducing available capacity and necessitating the increase in the stages of loadshedding. These were a unit each at the Camden, Duvha, Grootvlei, Hendrina, Kendal, and two units each at Kriel, Majuba and Matla power stations.

A unit each at Camden, Duvha, Hendrina, Kriel, Matimba and Matla power stations have returned to service, representing 2 540MW of capacity.

Eskom planned maintenance is currently 5 739MW while breakdowns amount to 18 041MW of capacity.

In related news, South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa, has confirmed that the Ministry of Energy will take over responsibility for overseeing state utility, Eskom.

The change will be in line with a resolution adopted by the governing African National Congress at its national conference last week.“It is a clear mandate from conference,” Ramaphosa told reporters at a media event in Johannesburg on Monday. “The resolution will be implemented,” and the government will decide how and when it will be done, he said.

Eskom has traditional fallen under the control of the Ministry of State Owned Enterprises (SOE). SOE Minister, Pravin Gordhan, recently appointed a new board at Eskom. Read more

Related news: South Africa’s renewable energy procurement programme in tatters

Related: South Africa is in a massive energy crisis. The state owned energy utility, Eskom, is facing unsustainable debt of around R400 billion and cannot meet the country’s electricity demand. More recently, the outgoing CEO of Eskom,  Andre De Ruyter, laid an attempted murder charge with the South African Police Service, after drinking a cup of coffee laced with cyanide at his Eskom office. Read more 

Author: Bryan Groenendaal

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