Cape Town - Marginal yet significant and maintained improvements are being made in addressing the energy crisis affecting the country, Electricity Minister Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa said during a media briefing on Sunday.
Ramokgopa was addressing journalists on progress made with the Action Energy Plan.
In 2021, the country had 75 days of load shedding. In 2022, this had risen to about 205 days, Ramokgopa said.
“And, of course, now we’re on track for a record number of load shedding days in a calendar year unless we do something dramatic.”
He said efforts to reduce energy usage were beginning to show results.
“If you look at our winter outlook, we had projected that we could be hitting highs of about 34000 megawatts. We have not reached anything close to that and we believe that it has to do with the change of attitude of households and industry. It is also a function of the effectiveness of the campaign that we are running.”
Some of the positives have been the plateauing of available capacity at about 29 000MW, according to a five-day average. “So you can see we are making significant improvements, about 1 300MW of improvement.”
The area that still required attention was partial load losses, he said.
“Essentially, these are units that are operating, but they are not at their optimal capacity. So there is a significant amount of capacity that we are losing as a result of a myriad factors. And we are not able to extract, fully exploit these units, ” he said.
“13 681 by June 30, is significantly better than 16 468 when we opened the week. So an improvement of approximately 3100 megawatts but we really want to keep on making improvements.”
At the beginning of May and ahead of winter, load shedding was intensified in anticipation of the increased demand that the country would experience.