Eskom cuts unplanned outages by 2,000 MW

South Africa’s available power capacity has increased to about 29,200 megawatts from 27,000 megawatts in eight weeks since May, as Africa’s most industrialized nation implements a plan to cut the severity and frequency of load shedding.

The measure has moved from a low of 48% to an average of 60%, Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa said during a briefing on Sunday.

The unplanned capacity loss factor has improved to an average of 15,000 megawatts from about 17,000 megawatts, he said.

“I do accept that there is a degree of impatience, but for us, the best measure of our performance is how we are able to maintain the available capacity over a period of time,” Ramokgopa said.

The country plans to increase transmission lines by 14,218 kilometres in the next 10 years and will seek to boost transformers sixfold by 2033 as it tries to keep up with projected demand from consumers and businesses.

There has also been an increase in private companies investing in electricity generation projects, mostly from renewable sources, partly to ensure reliable and good quality power supply for their operations, Ramokgopa said.

The authorities are expediting the time it takes to issue permits for investment in energy-related projects by introducing a one-stop shop to process applications, he said.


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