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South African Power Grid Under Severe Pressure – Eskom

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South African public power company, Eskom, has warned that the country’s power system is under severe pressure due to delays in returning generating units to service and multiple breakdowns at some power stations.

The electricity supplier warned that although load shedding is currently not being implemented, this could change at short notice.

“Eskom requests the public to reduce consumption of electricity as any further losses in generating capacity would force the implementation of load shedding. The loss of multiple generators over the weekend, as well as delays in returning some generation units to service, has made for a very constrained power system this afternoon.

“Load shedding is implemented only as a last resort to protect the national grid. We therefore request the public to continue using electricity sparingly to reduce the occurrence of load shedding,” Eskom said.

The power utility reported that unplanned breakdowns have accounted for the loss of at least 13 601MW of generating capacity, while planned breakdowns – or maintenance outages – account for at least 4 533MW in lost capacity.

“Eskom is working on returning a generation unit each at Matimba, Duvha and Arnot power stations to service before the evening peak. Today, a generation unit each at Arnot, Kendal, Matla and Tutuka power stations have been returned to service.

“However, we will still be heavily reliant on emergency reserves to meet demand tonight. Emergency reserves are healthy to assist in reducing the supply benefit,” Eskom said. –

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