Loadshedding Severity To Continue During 2023

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South Africans experienced more than 200 days of loadshedding in 2022. While 2022 has concluded, the darkness brought upon by rolling blackouts is set to continue into 2023.

 


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Eskom implemented loadshedding for more than 200 days in 2022. Citizens experienced power cuts at various levels which included Stage 6. During stage 6 loadshedding, people would be without electricity for around ten hours daily.

In September 2022, Eskom CEO Andre De Ruyter revealed that the power utility had decided against implementing permanent stage 2 loadshedding. However, the power challenges facing Eskom have not gone away and energy experts are predicting that loadshedding in 2023 will be similar to that experienced in 2022.

The severity of loadshedding may have decreased during the final days of December 2022, however, Chris Yelland, Managing Director at EE Business Intelligence believes that the stages of power could go up when businesses reopen and people return to work during January 2023.

Yelland revealed that Eskom took the opportunity during the festive season to conduct planned maintenance at power stations around the country. They believe that these record-levels of maintenance means that around 16% of generating units are not pumping electricity into the grid.

This maintenance is not dealing with the larger issues facing Eskom, says Yelland. This as demand for electricity will increase when factories, businesses and manufacturers begin work during January.

They said, “the real test will come in the middle of January when South Africa gets back to work, there is going to be a pickup in demand and that's when the system will be really tested.”

Yelland added that more action needs to be taken by roleplayers in order to combat the current challenges facing Eskom and says that the time for talking is over. They point to an emergency plan to combat loadshedding presented by President Cyril Ramaphosa in July 2022 as an example of something that South Africans are yet to see the results of.

 

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