Stage 5 load shedding will now be implemented throughout the day until further notice.
This was announced by State power utility Eskom following an increase in demand.
Eskom had ramped up load shedding to Stages 3 and 5 on Monday after delays in return to service and breakdowns at power stations caused further constraints to the power grid.
Meanwhile, Minister in the Presidency for Electricity, Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa, has warned that the power grid is expected to come under increased pressure as demand soars over the winter period.
The Minister was speaking in Tshwane on Tuesday afternoon following an outage in the Pretoria East area due to vandalism.
“It’s going to be a very difficult winter. We know that in summer conditions, the electricity deficit is 6 000MW and we know that when we go into winter, the peak demand can go up to 37 000MW. That is… significantly more… So it’s important that we do our part. But at the current rate of trips and failures, it’s going to be an exceptionally difficult winter.
“The projection going into the following summer period when we bring… Kusile Power Station’s 3 000MW back and some of the initiatives that require two to three months to kick in… [that leaves us] confident that going beyond winter, we have everything within our arsenal to resolve this load shedding.
“We are doing everything possible to make sure that we don’t go beyond Stage 6,” he said.
The Minister acknowledged that Eskom’s power stations face a challenge of unreliability, which is “undermining our ability to sustain generation” and stave off load shedding.
Ramokgopa emphasised, however, that South Africans can help the cause by using electricity efficiently, leading to lower demand.
“We are not just focusing on the generation side. There has to be a lot of effort that we are making on the demand side. There’s a lot that we can do to bring down demand without compromising our ability to meet our daily requirements as we go about life and of course, commerce.
“We will be coming out very aggressively and also introducing some of the latest technology to help us reduce the demand side. Once you reduce the demand side, you are able to close the deficit and essentially undermine the potential of going to higher stages of load shedding,” he said. – SAnews.gov.za