The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research’s (CSIR’s) annual statistics on power generation in South Africa revealed a disturbing trend regarding load-shedding.
Eskom implemented 5,761 gigawatt hours of load-shedding through September versus 2,521 gigawatt hours last year.
“This year is the most intensive load-shedding year to date, concentrated in July and September,” the CSIR said.
The collective in the three months of July to September 2022 had more load-shedding than any year before.
September 2022, the highest load-shedding month ever, on its own, had more load-shedding than the entire 2020.
This year’s Stage 6 load-shedding has far surpassed 2019’s, the only other year that had Stage 6.
The load-shedding was caused by significantly higher breakdowns at the power utility’s coal-fired power stations.
The higher unplanned outages were clearly seen in Eskom’s energy available factor (EAF), which continued its declining trend.
In 2022, the average EAF to date was 59.4%. It is significantly lower than 61.7% for 2021 and 65% for 2020.