Good news about Eskom’s performance – and load-shedding

Electricity minister Kgosientsho “Sputla” Ramokgopa has revealed that Eskom has achieved an energy availability factor (EAF) of over 65%, last seen in 2021.

EAF is a core performance metric for Eskom because it is directly linked to load-shedding. When the EAF declines, less power is available, which typically leads to load-shedding.

Eskom’s EAF has been declining for years because of poor maintenance at power stations and increased breakdowns.

However, Eskom’s EAF has been increasing in recent weeks, which has resulted in a load-shedding-free April.

“Eskom achievement of an EAF of 65.5%, last attained in 2021, confirms the success of the aggressive maintenance-led recovery strategy,” Ramokgopa said.

“This milestone validates the viability of the Eskom fleet of generation units and signifies the most efficient path to ending load shedding.”

He added that, given this performance’s proven success, the focus now shifts to maintaining and enhancing it.

Ramokgopa celebrated the return of Medupi Unit 4 (800MW), Koeberg Unit 2 (980MW), and the synchronisation of Kusile Unit 6 (800MW).

He said these three generation units will add 2,580 MW to the grid in the next six months, which will further help reduce load-shedding.

“These orchestrated improvements and new capacity mean that we have breached peak load-shedding,” the electricity minister said.

South Africa’s rooftop solar rollout, which was incentivised through tax breaks, is set to reach 6,000 MW by the end of the year.

“Government-induced private sector sponsored new generation capacity is critical to the attainment of energy sovereignty,” he said.

“We have indeed turned the corner. The end of load-shedding is within touching distance.”

Eskom chairman Mteto Nyati congratulated Eskom employees for their work to achieve an EAF of 65.5%.

“The team continues to reach beyond its reach through conscious effort. They have a renewed sense of confidence,” he said.


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