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Energy South Africa

Eskom defies odds, delivers 47 days of uninterrupted power

Eskom's Energy Availability Factor (EAF) has surpassed 70%, a level not seen since August 2021. This achievement marks 47 consecutive days without load shedding, a testament to the concerted efforts of Eskom's workforce and the implementation of the Energy Action Plan.
Minister in The Presidency responsible for Electricity, Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa gave an Energy Action Plan update from Kusile powerstation
Minister in The Presidency responsible for Electricity, Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa gave an Energy Action Plan update from Kusile powerstation

Speaking to the media, Minister in the Presidency responsible for Electricity, Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa emphasised the deliberate and orchestrated nature of Eskom's recovery, dismissing claims that the improvement is sudden or reliant on diesel.

He highlighted the successful return of Kusile's units 1, 2, and 3, adding 2,400MW to the grid and contributing to the overall increase in EAF.

“As I stand before you today, the Energy Availability Factor of Eskom has breached the 70% mark. That’s significant. The last time we achieved this was in August 2021."

Ramokgopa commended the dedication and patriotism of Eskom's employees, stating that their competence and hard work have been instrumental in turning the tide against the energy crisis.

He also acknowledged the challenges faced, including delays in the return of Koeberg Unit 1 and occasional setbacks, but reassured the nation that these are momentary and will not derail the progress made.

“This has happened over a period of time. It stretches from the appointment of [the current Eskom] board in October 2022. It gets to be codified in the Energy Action Plan unveiled by President Ramaphosa [in] July 2022, the appointment of the Minister in The Presidency responsible for Electricity, the stabilisation of the management team, the introduction of performance related incentive bonuses and the isolation of critical stations that required attention,” he said.

Positive trend

The positive trend in EAF is evident in the year-to-date figures, with a significant improvement compared to the previous year.

Ramokgopa stressed the importance of a holistic approach, combining efforts to increase base load capacity, maintain existing power stations, and integrate renewable energy sources.

While celebrating the achievement of 47 days without load shedding, the he cautioned that the journey is not over yet.

He emphasised the need to continue investing in maintenance, address challenges in municipal infrastructure, and ensure equitable distribution of the energy burden across all power stations.

He concluded by reiterating the government's commitment to transparency and accountability, providing detailed figures on diesel spending, capacity availability, and planned maintenance to dispel misinformation and demonstrate the tangible progress made in resolving the energy crisis.

About Lindsey Schutters

Lindsey is the editor for ICT, Construction&Engineering and Energy&Mining at Bizcommunity
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