Power utility Eskom says that stage 2 load shedding will be implemented on Friday from 05h00 until further notice.
This follows the breaking down of four units at its power stations, it said, adding that it also needs to replenish its reserves in preparation for the week ahead.
The group has been able to alleviate load shedding for much of the week, suspending outages during the day and only escalating to stage 2 in the evenings.
This has been thanks to better generating capacity as well as the return of a unit at Kusile ahead of schedule.
However, the outlook for rolling blackouts in the country is still on a knife’s edge, with the situation at risk of changing suddenly.
Eskom’s latest system report for the 39th week of the year shows that the overall picture is still reflecting ‘Code Red’ across the board.
The latest system report shows that the utility is planning for 52 weeks of projected supply shortfalls over 2,000MW (equivalent to 2 stages of load shedding) at minimum.
In its assessment of the year ahead, Eskom provides both a “planned” risk level – based on its baseline assumptions of megawatts that will be unavailable – and a “likely” risk scenario, based on the baseline assumption being exceeded by 1,500 MW.
The assumptions are all based on the last week of available operational data.
This particular assessment is based on an assumption that 16,000MW will be out due to unplanned outages. Including reserves of 2,200MW, Eskom “plans” around 18,200MW being offline due to outages.
In the “likely” scenario, this ramps up to approximately 20,200MW.
However, while this is a broad plan for the utility, it does not reflect what the group expects as an outlook in the summer months ahead.
Specifically, while the system report pegs its planned scenarios on outages (UCLF) between 16,000MW and over 20,000MW, its summer plan has reduced these forecasts to be between 14,500MW and 17,500MW.
In its current target scenarios, Eskom wants to keep unplanned outages below 14,500MW, which should help it keep the maximum level of load shedding under stage 4.
For people living in the major metros, load shedding schedules are available here:
- City of Johannesburg
- City of Ekurhuleni
- City of Tshwane
- City of Cape Town (PDF)
- Nelson Mandela Bay
- Buffalo City
For access to other load shedding schedules, Eskom has made them available on loadshedding.eskom.co.za.
Smartphone users can also download the app EskomSePush to receive push notifications when load shedding is implemented, as well as the times the area you are in will be off.