Electricity minister confident SA will survive winter amid power boost
South Africa has been grappling with severe electricity shortages in recent months, but Ramokgopa said we'll survive winter.
Electricity minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa outlines his action plan to increase the country’s energy supply. Picture: GCIS
With a significant boost in power generation, South Africa is poised to weather the winter season, electricity minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa said on Saturday.
Just last month, Ramokgopa had predicted an arduous winter due to the country’s electricity woes.
However, during a recent address, the minister revealed a commendable increase in power generation, now reaching an average output of 60%, which is a steep rise from the previous 48%.
Load shedding decreased
In a promising shift, South Africa’s daily blackouts have dramatically decreased from 12 hours to approximately two hours per day.
The substantial turnaround has been credited to Eskom’s strategic deployment of top-tier generation experts to the worst-performing power plants.
According to Ramokgopa, their efforts have resulted in the output of these stations exceeding expectations, much to the minister’s satisfaction.
Weather the winter
Expressing confidence in the current progress, Ramokgopa stated said he is certain South Africa will “weather the winter.”
He made these comments during a national executive committee meeting of the governing African National Congress in a hotel located east of Johannesburg.
He said South Africa will avoid the grim scenario previously anticipated, especially as the improvements are now set to continue.
The winter season’s peak demand, previously estimated at 34 000 megawatts, has come in lower at 30 000 megawatts, further alleviating the pressure on the energy grid.
Optimistic about electricity
Optimistic about the future, Ramokgopa said he is confident load shedding will soon be a thing of the past, thanks to the buffer reserve margin, in turn boosting the economy.
In a previous report in May, the central bank predicted that this year’s GDP growth would be a mere 0.3%, citing power outages as a key factor.
The persistent power cuts have led many South Africans to explore alternative energy solutions, such as installing solar units at their homes and businesses.