Two years until adequate power supply

Comment on this story
IOL bus mar11 Eskom power Reuters File photo: Mike Hutchings

Cape Town - South Africa is likely to have adequate electricity supply in around two years, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said on Tuesday, less than a week after the first rolling blackouts since 2008.

Eskom was forced to impose last week's supply cuts after heavy rains wet coal stockpiles at coal-fired power stations, causing a temporary supply shortfall on the already stretched national grid.

South Africa is building three new power stations, including two massive coal-fired plants at Medupi and Kusile, and has approved projects worth R110 billion from independent power producers to bolster energy supply.

“If we look at this package, I reckon that in the next two years or so we will have adequate electricity supply,” Gordhan told parliament during a question and answer session.

The first blackouts in six years, imposed to protect the national grid from a complete collapse by having heavy energy users cut their consumption by 10 percent, hit smaller businesses and households hard.

With two months to go to a general election, opposition parties have seized on the power cuts to attack the record of the ANC.

However, Gordhan refused to get drawn into a political argument over the issue.

“There is absolute frankness about where we stand so let us not mislead the public because it is election time,” he said.


sign up

Comment Guidelines

  1. Please read our comment guidelines.
  2. Login and register, if you haven’ t already.
  3. Write your comment in the block below and click (Post As)
  4. Has a comment offended you? Hover your mouse over the comment and wait until a small triangle appears on the right-hand side. Click triangle () and select "Flag as inappropriate". Our moderators will take action if need be.

  5. Verified email addresses: All users on Independent Media news sites are now required to have a verified email address before being allowed to comment on articles. You are only required to verify your email address once to have full access to commenting on articles. For more information please read our comment guidelines