‘Eskom conducting planned outages for power station maintenance’

Electricity Minister, Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa says Eskom is currently implementing planned outages to do maintenance of its power stations.

The country is currently in stage 4 rolling blackouts after it had been on stage 1 early this week.

Ramokgopa says they also want to ramp up renewable energy production to help boost energy availability.

Renewable energy has so far generated investments of over R334 billion.

The Minister says the current high levels of rolling blackouts are a result of ramping up planned outages for maintenance. And that this is necessary in the short term to help improve energy availability for the future.

Ramokgopa explains that there’s a need to focus on the distribution side to cater for areas that haven’t had electricity for about 5 years like Orange Farm due to the failure of distribution infrastructure.

Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa confident on government’s transition to cleaner energy:

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He says electricity demand has come down and is averaging 28 000 megawatts compared to 31 thousand megawatts experienced during the winter period.

‘Our intentions  is to make sure that these units become more reliable so that we can get Megawatts that we need , that is why it is important that we must invest in planned maintenance. What you are seeing now is stage which is controlled from side.”

Ramokgopa also gives an update on the performance of Independent Power Producers. He says Bid Window 1 has been able to produce over 72 000 employment opportunities.

And that about 85 billion rand has been allocated to black-owned businesses. The total amount of energy generated by renewable energy is 95 500 gigawatts.

Ramokgopa has acknowledged that tension between Eskom and the municipalities is affecting energy availability in the country.

And that transmission capacities remain one of the biggest challenges affecting energy production in the country.

Eskom has announced that Stage 4 load shedding will continue until 5 on Sunday morning followed by Stage 2 while Stage 4 will resume tomorrow in the afternoon.

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Source: SABC News (sabcnews.com)