[UPDATE] Eskom lowers loadshedding ahead of the weekend

  • Eskom has announced that Stage 4 loadshedding will be in effect from 14:00 on Friday afternoon.
  • The utility says that improved generation performance and lower demand allow for less severe power cuts.
  • Eskom will publish a further update as regards the rest of the weekend later today.

UPDATE 14:49 15/09/2023

Eskom has now announced that loadshedding will cycle between Stage 4 and Stage 2 all weekend. Stage 4 will be implemented until 05:00 on Saturday when Stage 2 will be implemented until 16:00. This will repeat again for Sunday.

Eskom has asked South Africans to be conservative regarding their energy usage between 17:00 and 21:00 daily.

The original story follows below.

Following a rapid descent into Stage 6 earlier this week, Eskom has now said that Stage 4 will be in effect from 14:00 on Friday as the power utility lowers loadshedding.

This comes as a result of some parts of Eskom’s generation fleet improving over the last few days.

“The improved generation performance and lower weekend demand has allowed the pumped storage dam levels to be restored to normal and allow Eskom to reduce loadshedding from Stage 5 to Stage 4 from 14:00 today until 05:00 on Saturday,” the utility wrote on X (formerly Twitter).

Alongside the downgrade in the severity of loadshedding, Eskom has said it will publish a full media statement later on Friday afternoon. This should give those looking to enjoy the Rugby World Cup 2023 a bit of respite when South Africa takes on Romania at 15:00 on Sunday afternoon.

The utility struggled to keep the lights on this week when a cold front hit parts of the country. This was demand reach a peak of 33 423MW, a level not seen since June when snow covered parts of the country.

This peak in demand prompted Eskom to threaten South Africans with Stage 7 loadshedding. This threat was largely met with jeers, especially when one considers that some folks didn’t have power for up to 12 hours during Stage 6 loadshedding.

By Thursday evening demand for electricity sat at 31 902MW. The utility was only able to generate 26 726MW. Interestingly, no open-cycle gas turbines were used to meet demand. This has fuelled speculation that the diesel stores at Eskom have run dry but the utility hasn’t made a statement in that regard.

Evening Peak 14/09/2023 (18:35)
Eskom Availability: 26 726 MW.
Total Demand: 31 902 MW
Loadshedding: 6 450 MW (LS Stage 6 & LC Stage 1 & 2)
-Number of OCGT’s
Utilised: 0
-Renewable Gen: 1
971 MW
-RES: Wind 1493 MW,
CSP 374 MW, PV 104
-IPP Availability…— Eskom Hld SOC Ltd (@Eskom_SA) September 15, 2023

With loadshedding of any stage still a permanent fixture we highly recommend folks take the weekend to weigh up their options when it comes to backup power solutions. Speaking from personal experience, the Gizzu Hero Pro we just reviewed has been a saviour during the four hour blocks and it just saw me through the bulk of a 34 hour outage.

Here’s hoping for even better news than just Stage 4 later this afternoon.

[Image – Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash]


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