Eskom: No loadshedding issues due to capacity maintenance anticipated until August 2016

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Eskom does not anticipate any loadshedding problems during its maintenance plans until August 2016, according to CEO Brian Molefe.

Molefe made this announcement at Eskom’s state of the quarterly system status briefing and summer predictions today at the national utility’s headquarters in Sunninghill.

Eskom will step up its capacity maintenance starting with a festival in December through to August.

“Our availability within the existing capacity is healthy and will stay within the budgeted reserves, so we do not anticipate problems until August,” Molefe said.

Molefe listed the number of power station units that are under maintenance between November and will continue to be until mid-2016, “we remain very far from loadshedding territory,” he said.

“Quite a number of units are out today, starting with Komati Unit 5 and Unit 3.

According to Molefe, Eskom’s Tetris maintenance project has given the national utility better predictability in terms of how the different power stations are expected to perform and their capacity outlook for 2016.

“For example, we can see that Medupi Unit 6 remained on a planned outage for 21 days, with no loadshedding. It enables us to perform maintenance, within our 4 500 planned maintenance allowance,” Molefe said.

Molefe added that Eskom will reduce its planned maintenance in winter to accommodate increased demand.

All this does not however mean that there will be no loadshedding at all in winter 2016; the possibility of outages remains if the systems become constrained and cannot handle the pressure from citizens usage patterns, not to mention negative weather that may negatively impact on the power stations.

[Image – CC tookapic]