South Africa could see the end of rolling power cuts by the end of next week according to Eskom’s Chief Executor Officer, Andre de Ruyter as more power generation units come online at the state power utility.
News 24 reported that Eskom implemented so-called “Stage six” loadshedding last month for only the second time in its history. The level of the outages has since been lowered, with Stage two to four blackouts in recent weeks. Eskom has blamed the outages on striking workers hampering efforts to bring faulty generation units back online.
“Towards the end of the coming week, we should emerge from loadshedding. We’ve already lifted our indication for loadshedding going forward, we’ve got a couple of big units returning so that’s positive news,” stated de Ruyter during a walking tour of the Tutuka power station in Mpumalanga with President Cyril Ramaphosa.
He added that towards the end of July, loadshedding should become less as the risk would be significantly diminished once unit two of the Koeberg nuclear power station comes back into the national grid, which “is about 920 MW so that will bring large measure of relief.”
De Ruyter adds however, that to ultimately “put loadshedding to bed, what we need is additional capacity because the system, as it is at the moment is still unreliable and unpredictable.”
Following the walking tour, Ramaphosa mentioned at a brief news conference that he had met with managers at another power station this afternoon to get a closer insight into the challenges we are facing.
“Having done so we’ll be able to come up with a number of proposals that can effectively deal with the challenges that the country faces when it comes to loadshedding,” Ramaphosa concluded.
He adds that these rolling power outages continue to affect economic development across the country and public finances, with the government guaranteeing as much as R350 billion of its debt.
As reported by Business Tech, Ramaphosa urged the government at a South African Communist Party meeting on Friday to turn to other countries like China who have a number of state-owned electricity producers competing amongst themselves to bring prices down.