Permanent Load Shedding For The Next Two Years: Eskom
Eskom provided an update on the power system on Sunday, 22 January, and announced that load shedding would be permanently implemented over the next two years.
Eskom chairperson, Mpho Makwana, said power cuts between Stages 2 and 3 are planned for the next two years to create “some predictability” and allow the power utility enough room to perform maintenance.
The permanent load shedding is part of Eskom’s plan to increase the Energy Availability Factor (EAF) enough to put an end to load shedding within the next two years. Makwana said the average EAF across the world is 86% – Eskom is currently sitting at 58% and over the next two years it hopes to grow to 70%.
The power utility is hoping to reach 60% EAF by 30 March, and increase it by 5% annually in 2024 and 2025. “The global average for EAF is about 86%. We’re looking to grow from our current 58% EAF to 70% in the next two years,” said Makwana.
The outgoing Eskom CEO, Andre de Ruyter, said the possibility of Stage 8 load shedding is receding but an “inherent risk” remains.
Stage 4 load shedding is planned for Monday, 23 January, and the power utility expects the severity of power cuts to be reduced to Stage 3 for the rest of the week.
Eskom Chief Operating Officer, Jan Oberholzer, said 43% of the utility’s electricity generating units are currently offline due to breakdowns and planned maintenance.