South Africa: Eskom Moves Load Shedding to Stage 4

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South Africa’s public utility Eskom has announced that the power supply has been downgraded to Stage 4, following the tripping off of two units, that is Majuba Unit 5 and Tutuka Unit 4. This is a week after it moved to the Stage 2 overnight load shedding. Eskom previously started with overnight Stage 2 load shedding last week, but more unit failures at various power stations led to full-time shedding until Friday morning. It was earlier expected that Stage 2 would be suspended on April 20. It is not immediately clear how long the Stage 4 load shedding will last for.

Eskom’s financial issues have affected its power generation and distribution, as a result of the breakdown of several of its power stations. This in turn has had a negative impact on its industry and economy. Factories and mines have been forced to reduce production and it is estimated that South African businesses have lost 13.72 billion rands and have spent 716 million rands on backup generators.

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Eskom has 5 474MW of capacity scheduled for repair, with another 17 018MW of power unavailable owing to breakdowns. ““The power grid remains vulnerable, and Eskom is compelled to impose load shedding in order to manage and replenish emergency generating stocks, on which it has relied to deliver energy this week,” Eskom leadership said last week.

In his briefing on Tuesday morning, CEO Andre de Ruyter announced that planned maintenance loss is 5124 megawatts, partial load losses is 4158 megawatts and full load losses are 11,164 megawatts.

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