High risk of load shedding on Monday and this week warns Eskom

MAY 18, 2015

Following a weekend of on and off load shedding, Eskom has again warned residents that there is a high probability of load shedding on Monday as it battles to meet demand for power. More load shedding is also expected for the rest of the week.

"...there is a high probability of  Load Shedding today, dependent on the performance of the power plant," the power utility said in a tweet in the morning.

Medupi’s first unit slowly inching towards target

On Thursday, Eskom announced that the first unit of its new power station, Medupi Unit 6, reached a new output level of 735MW generated on Monday, 11 May.

The unit ran for a record of 6 days and four hours without a trip until Sunday, 03 May.

"This is a significant achievement since its successful synchronisation on 02 March 2015 and indicates that it is closer to achieve the maximum load of 794 MW.

"We are pleased with this significant milestone and believe that power from this unit will go a long way in alleviating the capacity challenges we are facing. We commend the Project Team for their hard work and level of commitment in these trying times and this achievement gives a strong indication that we are steadily turning the corner in our quest to ease the pressure on the national power grid," Eskom’s Acting Chief Executive Mr Brian Molefe said.

Chances of load shedding high this week 

According to Eskom, the electricity system remains significantly constrained today and for the rest of the week leading into the weekend, as well as next week as demand surpasses available supply. The shortage of generating capacity is due to several units being out of service for maintenance.

Below is a run-down of power demand and supply for this week, according to its power bulletin released last Friday;

  • Monday (18 May): The capacity available to meet that evening’s peak demand is 31 998 MW (including open cycle gas turbines) while demand is forecast at 33 352 MW
  • Tuesday (19 May): The capacity available to meet that evening’s peak demand is 31 710 MW (including open cycle gas turbines) while demand is forecast at 33 473 MW.
  • Wednesday (20 May): The capacity available to meet that evening’s peak demand is 31 460 MW (including open cycle gas turbines) while demand is forecast at 33 463 MW.