Eskom to reduce load shedding to stage 5


Eskom says it is able to reduce load shedding to phase 5 on Monday after several power plants were put back into operation overnight.

“Overnight a unit in Camden, Kriel, Kusile and Kendal was brought back but unfortunately had to take off a unit in Duvha which developed a leak in the boiler tube. So loadshedding will be reduced to phase 5 at midnight,” the group said.

The planned outage is currently 5,411 MW while the outage is currently 16,326 MW.

Andre de Ruyter, chief executive officer of Eskom, said Sunday (Sept. 18) that the energy company is working hard to bring back failing generating units and restore grid stability.

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This, after multiple runs, outages and delays in getting production units back into service, caused the implementation of Stage 6 load shedding over the weekend.

De Ruyter said teams at coal-fired power plants are “doing everything they can” to bring generating units back as quickly as possible.

By Sunday, Eskom had lost at least 22,000 MW of generation capacity, partly due to units being taken offline for maintenance, but mostly due to unplanned outages.

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De Ruyter added that the reserve production capacity is also at a level that is “too low for comfort”.

He said generation capacity was also limited by the loss of about 800 MW at the Kusile plant and another 900 MW still unavailable at the Koeberg nuclear power plant.

De Ruyter said steps are also being taken to urgently purchase more electricity after an urgent Eskom board meeting attended by DPE minister Pravin Gordhan on Saturday.

“[On Monday], we will approach the market to buy the megawatts that are urgently available. We think we can get about 1,000 MW from the available generation capacity that we can tap into.

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“Not all of that is immediately available. Some of that depends on suppliers who need to replenish their coal bunkers or secure additional gas supplies. But in the case of IPPs (independent electricity producers), we have a very high degree of confidence that we can urgently buy more megawatts,” says De Ruyter.

Read: Why you should probably pay 38% more for Eskom power next year


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