No load shedding planned

2009-05-27 00:00

FOR the next five to seven years, Eskom’s electricity supply will continue to be put under immense pressure until newly-acquired baseload power stations are placed on line, in either 2012 or 2013.

Due to Eskom’s low reserve margin, load shedding cannot be ruled out should something unforseen affect Eskom’s power system.

Nevertheless, various measures have been adopted to help boost ge­neration capacity as well as ease demand.

Some of the measures that have been put in place include switching to solar water heating. Energy efficiency as well as demand side management initiatives that focus on replacing typical incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) are just some of the other initiatives Eskom plans to roll out.

In terms of supply, the acceleration of Eskom’s new build programme will help with excess demand. The ser­vicing of power stations, left unused when the country had surplus capacity in the 1980s, is also part of Eskom’s plans.

Although 20 days is the minimum requirement for coal stockpile days at power stations, Eskom has decided to increase this average to a reserve of more than 40 days.

With winter almost upon us, more people will be making use of heating appliances and this will put more strain on the system.

Msunduzi Municipality deputy manager Phil Mashoko urges residents to use electricity wisely and sparingly.

“We would like to encourage people to insulate their water pipes and insulate their geysers with blankets to reduce heat loss,” he said.

Mashoko said people should make use of energy-efficient bulbs and switch off electricity in rooms where there was no one inside.

“They should also try to use human energy to do things instead of … relying on electrical equipment,” he said.

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