The City of Cape Town says it has been building energy reserves in an effort to help reduce the impact of higher stages of Eskom’s load shedding.
The city was responding to comments made by Eskom chief executive Andre de Ruyter in which he warned that the power utility may have to introduce stage 6 load shedding on Tuesday evening (28 June). Stage 6 doubles the frequency of stage 3, which means outages will be scheduled over four-day periods for four hours at a time.
“As a city, we will do all we can to help our residents, protect service delivery and infrastructure and keep our network stable. Needless to say, stage 6 load shedding will have a profound impact on Cape Town and we are working to make sure the impact is reduced as far as possible by offering some protection from the higher stages of load shedding,” said mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis.
“This just underscores how necessary it is for Cape Town to move on our own to end load-shedding and reduce our reliance on Eskom power as quickly as we can.
“Much work is already underway with this goal in mind – in the City’s own build, small-scale embedded generation, wheeling and independent power producer programmes. In fact, the bid process for Independent Power Producers closed yesterday. In the meantime, we are doing everything in our power to assist our customers and we thank them for their support.”
Lewis noted that between January and May 2022, the city protected its customers through the use of the Steenbras Hydro Pumped Storage Scheme with one stage of load shedding amounting to approximately 514 hours or 21 days of protection from load shedding.
“Currently, the city has not offered much protection as it has worked to make sure there are reserves in place to stabilise the power grid for our customers should Eskom advise that we are heading into higher stages of load-shedding.”