After plunging South Africa back into intense stage-4 load shedding in the early hours of Friday, Eskom has now warned of “more erratic” changes to the rolling power cuts.
It said in a statement issued at 3pm on Friday that load shedding will continue to be implemented at stage 4 until further notice due to significant breakdowns in its generating fleet and depleted emergency generation reserves.
“Changes in the stages of load shedding will be more erratic due to the absence of the buffer that is normally provided by the diesel generation capacity between generating unit breakdowns,” it said.
Eskom said there have been delays in returning units to service at four power stations, which have contributed to the current capacity constraints. It also took two units offline on Friday for repairs.
Cash flow problems
Earlier this week, the company’s chief operating officer, Jan Oberholzer, said that because of the high number of unplanned outages this year, it had been forced to burn millions of litres of additional diesel than planned due to its heavy reliance on the OCGTs.
Oberholzer said this was leading to cash-flow issues because the utility was spending significant sums on diesel while municipalities and government organisations still owe it billions of rand.
Oberholzer added that in the next few months there was a high probability of load shedding continuing. – © 2022 NewsCentral Media