Eskom: Stage 8, the discussions and a trending stage 16 load shedding

eskom loadshedding electricity

Eskom alongside the National Energy Regulator of South Africa are working on preparing stages beyond Stage 8 of power cuts.

What does this mean?

This means the current load-shedding cuts do not cut it in remedying the issue.

Eskom and Nersa have begun discussions on higher load-shedding stage power cuts which could topple us all to stages 8 and higher.

Should these discussions culminate to desired action, municipalities including provinces may operate according to a set schedule which more likely will mean a new norm of power cuts.

Is stage 8 possible?

Stage 8 load shedding at the current Eskom situation remains a possibility.

Stage 8 means 12 to 14 hours a day with no power a major signal towards economic collapse. While Eskom has indicated the unlikelihood of higher numbered stage cuts, the utility also said load shedding stage could increase at short notice in an attempt to keep the national power grid from complete collapse.

The buckling power utility shifted to stage 6 power cuts last week, and this would remain until further notice.

Issues such as breakdowns at generating units Arnot, Hendrina, Lethabo and Majuba, including Camden suffered breakdowns and had to be taken offline for repairs forcing Eskom to implement Stage 6.

“Further, two generating units at the Lethabo power station were shut down due to coal constraints as the New Vaal mine that is supplying the station has been unable to deliver the expected amount of coal during the past week because of the heavy rains. The three running units are operating at minimum capacity and are at risk of shutdown should the coal supply constraints not be resolved,” Eskom said.

While former Eskom CEO Andre De Ruyter made assurances that the country would not upgrade to stage eight load shedding from the current stage six, his impromptu exit warrants not only suspicion but a lack of faith towards the embattled power utility.

Stage 4 means 12 outages each lasting two hours over a period of four days.

Stage 6,7 means two power outages each at four hours, with Stage 8 meaning six power outages or more likely 12 hours of no electricity.

Stage 15, would mean a completely dire situation where companies would loose money, company production would be crippled with many industries shifting to life support.

While Eskom buckles to find it’s feet, shoe and whatever is necessary for a solid solution, the EFF has planned a national shutdown on March 20 demanding an end to rolling blackouts.

In a recent Eskom statement the power utility said load shedding will continue at Stage 3 until 4pm on Tuesday, with stage 4 implemented briefly before stage 5 kicks in from 4pm until 5am on Thursday.

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