SA’s Power Capacity Goes Up As Eskom Links New unit to grid


More determined to provide more stable power supply for all SA residents, Eskom has successfully connected the first unit of its Kusile coal-fired power plant to the grid.

Unit one of the Kusile plant will add 800 megawatts (MW) of power capacity and Eskom said when the connection is completely done,  the plant will have total output of 4,800 MW, making it one of the largest coal-fired plants in// the world.

This will automatically increase power supply and at the same time, overcome electricity shortages. The power utility also said the move will add an extra 800 megawatts to further stabilise the power grid to support South Africa’s economic growth and the rollout of the electrification programme.

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Speaking further on this, Eskom’s interim group chief executive Matshela Koko who revealed that  the power utility has been in talks with Anglo Americans about supplying coal to the plant, also said that the power station building programme is starting to pay off, as the parastatal’s operations have stabilised.

He added that the utility now finds itself in a position of surplus capacity.

Eskom spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe who also welcomed the new development saidwould soon be a thing of the past for SA reidents

“Unit 1 came into synchronisation yesterday at 8.30pm but it is still being tested. Obviously during the testing phase it is producing power to the grid and will ultimately help us strengthen the power system to make sure South Africa doesn’t go back to those days of load shedding.”

Meanwhile, news report has it that Eskom recently released the request for information to start its nuclear programme.

But, Energy expert Chris Yelland says government has not completed all planning processes for the nuclear build programme and he believes the request for proposals amounts to putting the cart before the horse.

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Potential bidders Russia and France welcomed this development towards Eskom procuring 9.6 GW of nuclear energy But Yelland says more needs to be done before requesting proposals.

“We have not done the integrated resource plan for electricity update yet.

“This is a plan that will try and establish whether we need nuclear at all in the mix and if so, how much we need, when do we need it, how much it’s going to cost and how does it compare to the other options available.” Yelland said.