Energy expert explains what is causing current load shedding

Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan and some of the parastatal's top executives on Thursday held a briefing to give the public an explanation as to the reintroduction of load shedding.

Gordhan blamed poor infrastructure, untrustworthy contractors and state capture as some of the root causes.

READ: 'Cleaning up Eskom doesn’t suit everybody. Hands off! Don’t be treasonous!'

Reports suggest that the total cost of load shedding is estimated at R2 billion per day.

The Mail and Guardian report that part of the problem is not the shortage of coal, but maintenance issues. It adds that the money earmarked for maintenance was used to pay MacKenzie and Tegeta for coal that was never delivered.

Speaking to Bongani Bingwa, energy expert Chris Yelland explains the R2 billion per day cost.

It is the cost of unserved energy. It is the cost to the economy that is not getting the electricity when it needs it for a productive economy.

Chris Yelland, EE Publishers investigative editor

He believes that currently, coal shortages are not the cause of load shedding. However, this may change when the country enters a rainy period because of closed stockpiles at about ten of Eskom's power stations.

The current situation is caused by declining plant performance he adds.

We have plenty of capacity in South Africa but the trouble is that it is not available due to breakdowns of plants, planned maintenance, what is known as partial load losses and very poor performances of the new unit at Mudupi and Khusile power stations which aren't performing as they should.

Chris Yelland, EE Publishers investigative editor

Listen below to the full interview


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