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Loadshedding News

Eskom board approves plan to operate Camden, Grootvlei and Hendrina to 2030 

By: Terence Creamer     20th May 2024 The Eskom board has given its approval for the continued operation of the Camden, Grootvlei and Hendrina power stations to 2030 – a departure from the original decommissioning schedule that has reportedly been endorsed by Cabinet. In response to a question posed by Engineering News during an... 

Ramaphosa denies pre-election loadshedding respite is a ‘political ploy’ 

By: Terence Creamer     13th May 2024 President Cyril Ramaphosa has entered the politically charged discussion on the reasons behind the recent dramatic reduction in loadshedding ahead of what is expected to be a highly competition election and amid allegations that the reprieve is being staged managed to improve the governing... 

President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Deadline for latest battery procurement also extended as IPPs adjust to Eskom’s new grid access rules 

By: Terence Creamer     9th May 2024 The deadline for South Africa’s recently launched third battery energy storage bidding round, or bid window three (BW3), has been extended by three months to October 31, following a recent deadline extension for the concurrent second battery bidding round from April 30 to June 6. Independent... 

Battery storage

Genuine progress, not electioneering, behind the easing of loadshedding, council says 

By: Darren Parker     9th May 2024 The current loadshedding reprieve is not a result of excessive diesel burning to pacify voters but rather a consequence of government and business coming together to made headway in solving South Africa’s electricity crisis, Energy Council of South Africa (ECSA) CEO James Mackay has said.... 

pylon at sunset

NamPower grid-strengthening and battery storage project secures $138.5m World Bank backing

By: Terence Creamer     7th May 2024 The World Bank has approved a $138.5-million finance package to support the integration of renewable energy into Namibia’s electricity system by strengthening its transmission grid and integrating a second utility scale battery storage system into the country’s network. The initiative, which is... 

Power line and substation

MTN achieves record 98% network availability in Limpopo

By: Natasha Odendaal     7th May 2024 As telecommunications giant MTN South Africa accelerates its nationwide modernisation programme, the company has achieved a record 98.33% network availability daily in Limpopo. The 2024 resilience plan, which was completed in the first quarter of 2024, aims to ensure that all sites have power... 

Eskom takes City Power to court over R1bn debt   

By: Sashnee Moodley     6th May 2024 State power utility Eskom has said it has "no choice" but to approach the Johannesburg High Court to force City Power to pay just over R1-billion in unpaid debt. Eskom noted that City Power began to default on payments in October 2023 and that it did not receive any payment for March, this year. 

Eskom logo

Ramokgopa insists loadshedding not being ‘stage managed’ ahead of May 29 poll  

By: Terence Creamer     6th May 2024 Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa denies that the prevailing reprieve from loadshedding has been “stage managed” to improve the prospects of the governing African National Congress ahead of the May 29 poll, attributing it instead to “orchestrated” engineering efforts undertaken by Eskom... 

Minister insists the recent period of no loadshedding is down to the improved performance of coal stations such as Matla (pictured)
Photo by Creamer Media
Minister insists the recent period of no loadshedding is down to the improved performance of coal stations such as Matla (pictured)

The lights are on in South Africa and many people are suspicious

By: Bloomberg     3rd May 2024 South Africa is enjoying a rare streak of uninterrupted electricity right before elections, drawing more suspicion than praise in a nation that’s become accustomed to the daily power cuts that have dragged on for years. The country is currently in its fourth successive week of no outages — the... 

Electricity lightbulb

City of Joburg working on 'innovative measures’ to reduce power outages, promises Mayor Gwamanda 

By: Thabi Shomolekae     2nd May 2024 City of Johannesburg mayor Kabelo Gwamanda announced on Thursday that the City intends to add an additional 50 MW of power to its grid by bringing online the Durban Street Substation, in the next financial year. Gwamanda was presenting the State of the City Address in Johannesburg, where he said... 

Image of Kabelo Gwamanda
Johannesburg mayor Kabelo Gwamanda

Motsepe-backed GoSolr plans $537m South Africa expansion

By: Bloomberg     2nd May 2024 GoSolr, a company backed by South African billionaire Patrice Motsepe and the continent’s biggest bank, plans to spend R10 billion to roll out a model of renting solar panels and batteries to homes in the nation plagued by blackouts. The two-and-a-half-year-old company seeks to install about 500... 

Patrice Motsepe
Patrice Motsepe

City Power seeks funding, manufacturing partners for informal settlement ‘energy box’  

By: Terence Creamer     30th April 2024 Johannesburg’s City Power is seeking manufacturing and venture capital partners to further develop and pilot a rugged ‘energy box’ concept in one of the city’s 312 informal settlements as a possible greener and safer alternative to the illegal connections that currently predominate. Chief... 

Joburg has 312 informal settlements where illegal connections pose an electrocution risk
Photo by Bloomberg
Joburg has 312 informal settlements where illegal connections pose an electrocution risk

Electrical specialist says load curtailment in Ekurhuleni should be respected, or more outages may ensue

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th April 2024 With the City of Ekurhuleni having entered into a load curtailment agreement with national power utility Eskom, this mandatory energy reduction has been met with some protest by businesses, but electrical control equipment provider CBI-electric:low voltage engineering executive Dr Andrew Dickson... 

Solar rental firm begins testing roll-out model for underserved communities 

By: Terence Creamer     25th April 2024 Local solar-as-a-subscription service provider Wetility is deploying a rooftop solar solution in a lower-income community as part of a proof-of-concept study to firm up the feasibility of extending the offering to other underserved areas. COO Franta Pour tells Engineering News that the company’s... 

A Wetility installer

Opinion: A call for clear, uniform solar policy in South Africa

24th April 2024 In this article, residential solar solutions provider GoSolr CEO and co-founder Andrew Middleton, writes that solar power has the potential to significantly reduce loadshedding, but patchwork policies, differing tariffs and a lack of incentives are stalling growth. 

A solar panel being installed

Ramokgopa describes IPP surpluses as low-hanging fruit amid delay in finding contractual solution  

By: Terence Creamer     22nd April 2024 Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa describes surplus electricity arising from existing renewable energy facilities as “low hanging fruit” in improving the supply-demand balance and reports that discussions are under way to assess ways to make this energy available to the grid. Speaking... 

Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa
Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa

NTCSA begins consultations on market code to govern shift towards competitive electricity industry 

By: Terence Creamer     19th April 2024 With the National Transmission Company South Africa (NTCSA) currently scheduled to be operationalised in July and efforts under way to ensure that the Electricity Regulation Act (ERA) Amendment Bill is passed by the current Parliament, work is now advancing on the market code for the future... 

NTCSA begins consultations on market code to govern shift towards competitive electricity industry

Private renewables procurement may mitigate boom-bust cycles curbing South Africa’s green industrialisation 

By: Terence Creamer     18th April 2024 The combination of public and private procurement of large-scale renewables in South Africa signals increased stability for manufacturers of key components, a new GreenCape report argues. Published ahead of the release of the much-anticipated South African Renewable Energy Masterplan (SAREM),... 

Together with large-scale procurement, rising rooftop solar installations are offering greater market stability that could stimulate local manufacturing
Together with large-scale procurement, rising rooftop solar installations are offering greater market stability that could stimulate local manufacturing

Joburg Water showcases its reservoirs 

17th April 2024 Johannesburg Water has showcased some of the various reservoirs and systems that supply the City of Johannesburg with water. The water utility also outlined the challenges in operating the systems that feed the economic hub with the critical resource. Natasha Odendaal has the story. 

Joburg Water showcases its reservoirs
Joburg Water showcases its reservoirs

Eskom says modest R9m RCA request not a signal of alignment with Nersa on calculations 

By: Terence Creamer     17th April 2024 The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) has initiated consultations on Eskom’s latest Regulatory Clearing Account (RCA) application for the 2022/23 financial year, where Eskom is requesting R9-million, its lowest RCA application since the utility began making yearly submissions... 

Nersa public hearing

Stage 16 loadshedding code seeks to reduce human error not signal imminent surge in cuts – Nersa  

By: Terence Creamer     16th April 2024 The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) has belatedly moved to quell concern that its recent approval of a new loadshedding code of practice, which increases the number of potential stages from eight to 16, represented a signal that the prospect for higher levels of loadshedding was... 

A person using candles during power cuts
NRS Association management committee chairperson Vally Padayachee explains the reason for the new loadshedding standard at a Nersa briefing. Recorded & Editing by Shadwyn Dikinson. 16.4.2024

South Africa’s ranking in World Energy Trilemma Index falls 

By: Terence Creamer     16th April 2024 South Africa has fallen to sixty-ninth from sixty-fourth on the World Energy Council’s (WEC’s) latest World Energy Trilemma Index which ranks more than 100 countries against the three key dimensions of energy security, equity, and environmental sustainability. The index is included in the ‘World... 

Power lines over an informal settlement

Eskom mulls private, foreign options on R390-billion grid build

By: Bloomberg     12th April 2024 South Africa’s State-owned power utility Eskom said it’s in talks with government ministries over private and foreign options to fund a R390-billion expansion of its transmission network as more renewable generation comes online. Eskom supplies more than 80% of electricity to the continent’s most... 

Power lines

Electricity outlook for winter  

By: Creamer Media Reporter      12th April 2024 Engineering News editor Terence Creamer discusses the halt in loadshedding over recent weeks; what South Africans should expect for the higher-demand winter period; and the longer-term outlook for South Africa's electricity sector. 

Electricity outlook for winter
Electricity outlook for winter

South African fossil fuel subsidies hit record R118bn in 2023 - IISD 

By: Terence Creamer     10th April 2024 A new study has found that South Africa's fossil fuel subsidies tripled between 2018 and 2023, rising to R118-billion from R39-billion over the period, with subsidies having been increased largely in response to the surge in fuel prices following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022. Titled... 

South African fossil fuel subsidies hit record R118bn in 2023 - IISD

Ramokgopa says ‘degree of convergence’ reached with NTCSA on unlocking private participation in grid

By: Terence Creamer     9th April 2024 Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa reports that a “degree of convergence” has been reached between his Ministry and the National Transmission Company South Africa (NTCSA) regarding private sector participation in the electricity grid and no further Cabinet approval is required ahead of... 

Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa
Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa

Eskom aims to keep breakdowns below 14 GW this winter as it cuts diesel budget 

By: Terence Creamer     9th April 2024 State-owned electricity utility Eskom will reduce planned maintenance to 3 000 MW during the upcoming winter season and will seek to keep unplanned breakdowns to below 14 000 MW in a bid to navigate the high-demand period with limited loadshedding. During the summer period, from September to the... 

Eskom to ramp down planned maintenance to 3 000 MW in winter
Photo by Creamer Media
Eskom to ramp down planned maintenance to 3 000 MW in winter

Globeleq says R5.7bn Red Sands will be largest standalone battery storage project in Africa  

By: Terence Creamer     5th April 2024 Leading African independent power producer Globeleq says the 153 MW/612 MWh Red Sands project, which was recently awarded preferred bidder status under South Africa’s inaugural battery storage public procurement round, will be the largest standalone battery energy storage system (BESS) in Africa... 

Globeleq CEO Mike Scholey
Globeleq CEO Mike Scholey

All conditions met for separation of NTCSA, but April deadline for full operationalisation missed 

By: Terence Creamer     4th April 2024 All the suspensive conditions opening the way for the National Transmission Company of South Africa (NTCSA) to be constituted as a separate, distinct and wholly-owned subsidiary of Eskom Holdings have been met, Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan and Eskom chairperson Mteto Nyati have... 

Power lines

Third battery storage programme seeks bids for five Free State sites  

By: Terence Creamer     2nd April 2024 The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) has launched South Africa’s third public procurement round for utility-scale batteries, while also extending the bid submission deadline for Bid Window Two (BW2) of the Battery Energy Storage Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme... 

Eskom's Hex battery project, developed separately form the IPP procurement programmes currently under way
Eskom's Hex battery project, developed separately form the IPP procurement programmes currently under way

W Cape Premier’s department allocates over R100m to fix energy crisis

By: Thabi Shomolekae     26th March 2024 Western Cape Premier Alan Winde announced on Tuesday that over the current Medium Term Expenditure Framework, the Department of the Premier is ploughing R103.4-million into a response to the energy crisis in the province. Winde was delivering the 2024 Premier budget vote, where he noted that the... 

Image of Alan Winde
Western Cape Premier Alan Winde

Solar PV body questions technology costs and build limits in draft IRP 

By: Terence Creamer     26th March 2024 The South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (SAPVIA) questions both the cost assumptions used for the technology in the draft Integrated Resource Plan 2023 (IRP 2023), as well as the 900 MW yearly build limit placed on distributed solar in its formal submission to the department. SAPVIA’s... 

Solar panels

Eskom board considers enlarging and extending Standard Offer Programme

By: Terence Creamer     25th March 2024 Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa reports that the Eskom board is considering lifting the current 1 000 MW allocation set aside for its Standard Offer Programme to 4 000 MW and extending the scheme beyond its initial three-year time horizon. Through the Standard Offer Programme Eskom can... 

Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa
Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa

NTCSA unbundling secures lender consent, Ramokgopa confirms 

By: Terence Creamer     25th March 2024 Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa reports that Eskom’s eight “lender groups” have given their consent to the establishment of the National Transmission Company South Africa (NTCSA) as a separate subsidiary under Eskom Holdings. Bondholder consent was one of several key approvals required... 

Powerlines

Independent power producer body rejects an IRP that ‘plans to fail’  

By: Terence Creamer     20th March 2024 The South African Independent Power Producer Association (SAIPPA) has added its voice to a growing chorus of opposition to the draft Integrated Resource Plan 2023 (IRP 2023), the comment deadline for which is on March 23. In its formal comment on the draft, SAIPPA argues that the document is... 

Wind and solar farms

Conclusions in opaque IRP 2023 are ‘incorrect and economically damaging’ 

By: Terence Creamer     19th March 2024 In an excoriating assessment of the draft Integrated Resource Plan 2023 (IRP 2023), Meridian Economics points to serious problems with the modelling and cost assumptions used by the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE), which the consultancy says has resulted in “incorrect and... 

Unconstrained IRP would have far more wind and solar PV, analysis shows
Unconstrained IRP would have far more wind and solar PV, analysis shows

Energy Regulator approvals mark another step towards NTCSA’s operationalisation

By: Terence Creamer     18th March 2024 South Africa’s Energy Regulator has taken another set of decisions opening the way for the operationalisation of a separate grid company in South Africa ahead of the far-reaching legislative changes approved by the National Assembly last week. On March 11, the Energy Regulator consented to the... 

Energy Regulator approvals mark another step towards NTCSA’s operationalisation
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