Eskom latest: 4 000 MW to be cut from grid, new power accords

Eskom will implement so-called stage 4 load shedding until 4 p.m. on Thursday after more generation units broke down and as the utility rushed to replenish its emergency generation reserves.

Eskom initially planned to reduce power cuts to stage 2 — where it removes 2 000 megawatts from the grid — from 5 a.m. on Thursday.

A further update will be published later in the day, the state-owned utility said in a statement.

SA signs accords for 203MW of power under emergency plan (August 30, 8:18 p.m.)

South Africa’s Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe signed agreements for renewable energy project with two additional preferred bidders.

The projects totaling 203 megawatts form part of the Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme and comprise a combination of solar photovoltaic, onshore wind and battery storage technologies, the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy said in a statement.

Energy fund for farmers (August 29, 3:23 p.m.)

South Africa’s government established a fund to reduce the effect of power outages on the agriculture industry and encourage investment in alternative energy, Agricultural and Land Reform Minister Thoko Didiza said.

The fund — a joint project between the Department of Agriculture and Land Reform and the Land & Agricultural Development Bank of South Africa — will provide a combination of loans and grants to qualified recipients, Didiza told reporters in the capital, Pretoria, on Tuesday. It will have R1.21bn ($65 million), with R500 million provided by the department and the remainder as loans from the Land Bank.

“The priority will be on supporting dairy farmers, piggeries, poultry, all irrigated commodities and on-farm processing,” she said.

Eskom posts R5bn loss in first quarter (August 29, 2:40 p.m.)

Eskom posted a R5 billion loss in the first quarter of its financial year, National Treasury’s Deputy Director-General of Public Finance Mampho Modise told lawmakers in Cape Town, without providing a comparative figure.

Revenue grew to R70.9 billion in the three months through June, from R66.3 billion a year earlier, driven by a 19% increase in tariffs from April 1, she said.

“Eskom’s profitability remains hampered by poor long-term financial sustainability arising from an inadequate tariff path, poor generating plant performance, escalating arrear municipal debt as well as high financing costs,” Modise said.

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