There is unlikely to be any further load shedding until at least mid-January 2019, Eskom said in a statement on Thursday.
“Eskom has not implemented load shedding in four consecutive days,” it said. “The probability of load shedding remains low from today until Sunday, 13 January 2019. This is as a result of the expected decrease in demand as businesses and industries close for the festive break.”
But that doesn’t mean Eskom is out of the woods. “Heavy rains over the December to March period could impact coal handling to the boilers with a potential impact on generation production. While we do not anticipate load shedding, we continue to warn customers that, as the system remains vulnerable, any shift could increase the probability of it.”
The state-owned utility, which is saddled with more than R400-billion of debt, said it will continue to implement a short- to medium-term nine-point recovery programme that should result in a “steady and sustained improvement in plant performance and coal stock levels”.
“During the December period, Eskom will intensify its maintenance activities in an effort to improve generation capacity for the returns of businesses and industries in the new year.”
It said steady progress has been made in fixing coal stockpiles, with 35 coal contract concluded in 2018. “In preparation for continuous rains, three days of compacted strategic stockpiles have been created at power stations.” — (c) 2018 NewsCentral Media