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Eskom Reduces Loadshedding to Stage 5 Amid Generation Challenges

by Central News Reporter
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Eskom loadshedding

Eskom Loadshedding

JOHANNESBURG – The South African power utility, Eskom, has announced a downscale in loadshedding from Stage 6 to Stage 5 to be effective from 12pm today, with no specified end time. The decision comes after what has been described as critical efforts to bolster electricity generation capacities within the country.

Eskom’s most recent statement has outlined that vigorous action taken over the last two days has allowed for a gradual replenishment of its pumped storage dam levels. This crucial development, paired with the revival of some of the utility’s generation units, paved the way for the scaling down of loadshedding measures.

“This enabled the reduction of loadshedding to Stage 5 from 12:00 midday until further notice. Eskom will closely monitor the power system and communicate any changes to loadshedding should it be required,” the power utility explained.

The current state of the national power grid remains precarious as Eskom disclosed that unplanned outages have currently sidelined 17,595MW of generating capacity. Concurrently, another 6,885MW is unavailable due to scheduled maintenance. Despite these challenges, Eskom has been resourceful, with promises from their Power Station General Managers and their teams to restore an additional 3,200MW by Wednesday evening to further stabilize the grid.

With an anticipated evening peak demand of 25,290MW, Eskom has reached out to the public with an earnest appeal: “We would like to appeal to members of the public to use electricity sparingly and efficiently, including switching off geysers and pool pumps from 17:00 to 21:00. This lowers demand and helps in alleviating the pressure on the power system, contributing to lower stages of loadshedding.”

The context of these power shortages has not been lost on the public, nor on political figures. ANC secretary-general Fikile Mbalula openly expressed his dissatisfaction through a post on the social media platform X, denouncing the previous declaration of Stage 6 loadshedding as a calculated act of sabotage.

Eskom had initially signaled the commencement of Stage 6 loadshedding from midnight until an unspecified time—a move that had generated widespread concern. This announcement was made in the early hours of Saturday, February 10th, at 00:29 am, catching many citizens off guard and leaving businesses scrambling to adjust to the intensified rolling blackouts.

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