May 24, 2023
Eskom Latest: Food Maker Installs Solar; Bigger Cuts for Longer
(Bloomberg) -- Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd., South Africa’s state power utility, will cut 6,000 megawatts of power from the grid from 4 p.m. Monday until 5 a.m. on Tuesday, instead of 5,000 megawatts, due to delays in returning 10 of its generating units to service.
The utility will thereafter cut 4,000 megawatts from the grid until 4 p.m. It will then repeat the pattern until further notice, it said in a statement on Twitter.
Energy Regulator Agrees to Eskom Power Purchase Plans (May 29, 6 p.m.)
The National Energy Regulator of South Africa approved a plan to allow Eskom to buy 344.5 megawatts of new generation capacity from solar and battery energy storage.
The regulator also approved the national free basic electricity rate of 172.76c per kilowatt-hour for the 2023/24 municipal financial year, effective from July 1.
Regulators’ Contingency Planning for Possible Grid Shutdown (May 29, 5 p.m.)
The Financial Sector Contingency Forum, which includes the central bank and other financial regulators, said they continue to plan “for the improbable but not impossible scenario of a national electricity grid shutdown” with a view to mitigating the impact on the financial system and the economy.
Solar Panel Demand Soars in Cape Town (May 29, 3:38 p.m.)
Cape Town has seen a record number of applications to install solar power as South Africa’s electricity shortage worsens.
More than 2,300 of these requests have been made this year as of end-April, with the figure of almost 700 in March the highest to date, the City of Cape Town said in a statement. As an incentive, the city will offer to buy excess rooftop solar power from businesses and homes from later this year.
Read more: Cape Town’s Demand for Home Solar Panels Surges on Power Outages
Eskom CEO Shortlist Includes Ayanda Noah, Marokane, Solidarity Says (May 29, 2:59 p.m.)
Ayanda Noah, chairwoman of South Africa’s Central Energy Fund and former executive for customer services at Eskom, and Dan Marokane, Eskom’s former head of group capital, have been shortlisted to take over as the utility’s chief executive officer, the Solidarity labor union said.
Marokane was Solidarity’s top pick, with Noah the second choice, the union said, without naming any of the other candidates. The information on the shortlist was communicated directly by Eskom, said Theuns du Buisson, an economic researcher at the Solidarity Research Institute.
Eskom denied that it had communicated any information about the shortlist because discretion and confidentiality were essential when hiring executives. “We can confirm at this stage that we have concluded the interviews and will announce the successful candidate at the appropriate time,” it said it a text message.
Read More: Eskom CEO Shortlist Includes Marokane, Noah: Solidarity Union
Ramaphosa Sets Powers for Minister to Address Energy Crisis (May 26, 5:34 p.m.)
President Cyril Ramaphosa allocated a range of powers to his electricity minister to enable him to address the nation’s energy crisis, almost three months after appointing him.
Kgosientsho Ramokgopa will be able to determine which energy sources should be used to generate additional electricity and has been given the authority to enable private-sector participation in the procurement of new capacity, according to a statement from the Presidency.
The announcement transfers some responsibilities away from Gwede Mantashe, the energy minister, who has faced criticism for stifling the government’s efforts to transition away from the use of coal, which is used to produce most of the nation’s electricity, and buy more green energy.
--With assistance from Renee Bonorchis.
©2023 Bloomberg L.P.