Eskom says there’s a high risk of loadshedding until at least September this year. Earlier, the embattled power utility announced the commencement of Stage 2 rotational outages that would continue until Sunday evening. This is due to the loss of generation capacity.
Two generation units at the Kusile Power Station tripped due to the failure of the main coal feed conveyor belts supplying coal to the units. In addition, a unit each at the Kriel and Duvha tripped due to unforeseen breakdowns.
Eskom Spokesperson Sikhonathi Mantshantsha, says, “Loadshedding will be a part of our lives for the foreseeable future and we will really see a significant difference starting around September. At this particular point, we have got almost 15 000 megawatts of capacity that is out on unplanned breakdowns. Two units at the Kusile Power Station are not available. That is being addressed.”
Mantshantsha says both units should be back by Saturday.
“Our lives are at the mercy of very unreliable power stations, ageing infrastructure. Even after September, Eskom is not even able to say loadshedding will be eliminated. We are saying it will be significantly reduced.”
Eskom explains implementation of stage 2 load shedding: Skonathi Mantshantsha
The DA has called on Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan to give assurances that hospitals and COVID-19 vaccine processing facilities will not be impacted by loadshedding. The party raised concerns about people on ventilators and the storage of vaccine doses once they arrive.
In a statement, the party’s Spokesperson on Public Enterprises, Ghaleb Cachalia, says the coronavirus pandemic has had devastating consequences on the health system and that loadshedding will just add to this burden.
Eskom announced stage two loadshedding from today until Sunday night. The utility blamed the outages on two units tripping at its Kusile Power station in Mpumalanga.
Eskom to implement Stage 2 loadshedding from 12:00 today until 23:00 on Sunday pic.twitter.com/YV8ilj5o9r
— Eskom Hld SOC Ltd (@Eskom_SA) January 14, 2021