Blackouts loom as coal at Eskom in short supply

Although Eskom says it is not implementing load shedding, the power utility has warned of this possibility and has said that the power grid is stretched.

How can ordinary South Africans mitigate against the certainty of the unreliable power supply?

READ: 'We feel embarrassed and disappointed by the person who leaked the Eskom report'

Director at the Centre for Renewable and Sustainable Energy Studies at the University of Stellenbosch Professor Sampson Mamphweli says most of us thought that load-shedding was behind us. But then Eskom announced that one of the major coal suppliers unexpectedly would cut coal supply to about 10 out of 15 coal power stations at Eskom.

That means that about 90% of our electricity is generated using coal and it means we are sitting with a huge problem in terms of electricity supply if Eskom cannot get enough coal to get those power stations going.

Professor Sampson Mamphweli, Director at the Centre for Renewable and Sustainable Energy Studies at the University of Stellenbosch

He adds that this is because there were a number of delays, especially in introducing renewable energy into the electricity grid in South Africa.

The example to that was that the 27 projects that were procured recently took too long to be signed and we had companies that were ready to provide the services shutting down and things like that happening.

Professor Sampson Mamphweli, Director at the Centre for Renewable and Sustainable Energy Studies at the University of Stellenbosch

But the government programme on renewable energy is back on track and we hope that this will have a positive impact on our electricity supply.

Professor Sampson Mamphweli, Director at the Centre for Renewable and Sustainable Energy Studies at the University of Stellenbosch

Listen below to the full interview:


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