Statements on the energy sector by South African Cabinet are false

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In a statement on the Cabinet Meeting of 5 July 2023, the South African government welcomed the improvement in Eskom’s Energy Availability Factor, which is now closer to 70%. They added that about 400 megawatts (MW) have been added to the grid and planned maintenance has improved in a short space of time.

In reality, Eskoms’ week-on-week energy energy availability factor (EAF) is nowhere near 70%, and is reported officially today by Eskom as 58.31% for Week 26, 2023, with year-to-date EAF of 53.77% (down from 59.35% for same period in 2022). This has been verified by respected energy analyst, Chris Yelland.

Image credit: Eskom

Eskom’s twitter account reports the following:

Eskom yesterday reported breakdowns increased to 15 100MW of generating capacity while the generating capacity out of service for planned maintenance slightly increased to 5 252MW. Over the past 24 hours, a generating unit at Arnot Power Station was returned to service. In the same period, a generation unit at Matimba Power Station was taken out of service due to a breakdown. The delay in returning to service two generating units at Tutuka Power Station is contributing to the current capacity constraints. Eskom teams are working around the clock to return generating units to service over the next few days.

Cabinet also noted the decision by the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment’s National Air Quality Officer to grant Eskom a postponement to meet the Minimum Emission Standards at the Kusile Power Station in Mpumalanga, subject to certain strict conditions. The postponement will allow Eskom to carry out repairs on the stack that was damaged on 23 October 2022. The power utility will also construct three temporary stacks that are expected to return 2 100 MW of power to the national grid and reduce load-shedding by two levels. This decision has been appealed by civil society. Read more 

Author: Bryan Groenendaal


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