Loadshedding Rises To Stage 4, Likely To Worsen

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After rolling blackouts last week, South Africans received reprieve as the country’s power utility Eskom announced that loadshedding will not impact April's longest weekend, which had two public holidays. 
 


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However this reprieve was short-lived as Eskom announced a return to Stage 2 loadshedding on Sunday. This was then escalated to Stage 4 loadshedding on Tuesday morning as the power utility battles to keep the lights on. 

Eskom explained that the escalation in loadshedding was due to generation unit tripping at its Majuba and Tutuka power stations. 

They said, “Regretfully, Eskom has just been forced to implement Stage 4 loadshedding at 07:20 following Majuba Unit 5 and Tutuka Unit 4 tripping”. 

Eskom CEO Andre De Ruyter revealed that Approximately 15 627 MW of capacity is unavailable due to unplanned breakdowns while 5 124 MW is unavailable due to planned maintenance.

On Sunday, the power utility said that loadshedding was set to conclude on Wednesday morning, however this now looks highly unlikely with additional outages and an escalation in the severity of loadshedding. 

Energy Analyst Ted Blom explained that the amount of Diesel which was being burnt to keep the electricity on was unheard of for a Sunday evening, especially on a long weekend. He suggested that this pointed to an imminent escalation in the stage of loadshedding.

Blom warns that loadshedding could even get worse during winter when electricity usage is higher. He said that Eskom unofficially suggested that South Africans could be in for around 100 days of loadshedding during the coldest months of 2022. 

 

 

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