Western Cape electricity update – 4 February
The national power grid remains constrained with stage 2 load shedding projected to remain in place until Thursday at 6am.
The Minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning in the Western Cape, Anton Bredell, has welcomed a pilot program whereby load shedding is suspended during peak traffic hours between 6am and 9am and 4pm and 6pm whenever possible.
“This will help with congestion and we applaud Eskom for trying to implement this measure when it can.”
Bredell says Eskom is struggling with unplanned outages, which are still at levels of 11 398 MW, much higher than the manageable levels of 9 500MW.
“These are unforeseen and unpredictable outages which can occur anywhere in the coal generation fleet. When these outages occur, Eskom runs diesel generators and uses its hydro pumping stations to supplement the supply. The problem is the longer the system is constrained, the faster the diesel and water supplies run out and the longer it takes to replenish these backups.”
Bredell explained that the current load shedding is needed to enable Eskom to adequately replenish all its emergency reserves.
“The system is expected to be under pressure for at least the next 18 months, during which period Eskom has assured us they will be doing intense maintenance on the old struggling plant. We want to urge consumers to drive down electricity usage as far as possible. Not only will this help Eskom in potentially preventing load shedding, it will also ensure households electricity costs are lowered. The less electricity we use, the cheaper our bills.”
For more information and tips on what you can do to be better prepared for load shedding follow this link:
Spokesperson for the Minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, Anton Bredell
Mobile: 084 583 1670
Telephone: 021 483 2820