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Transmission & Distribution News

Eskom considering taking on climate funds as equity injection

By: Bloomberg     22nd March 2022 State power company Eskom is planning to propose that some of the funding the country secured to help tackle climate change take the form of loans to the government that could be converted to equity in the utility when needed. The arrangement would enable Eskom to access the $8.5-billion pledged... 

Power outages across Pretoria as municipal workers embark on a strike

By: News24Wire      18th March 2022 Several parts of Pretoria have been left without electricity amid an "illegal" strike by City of Tshwane staff. At least four regions have been affected during three days of outages. The affected areas included Kwaggasrand, Westpark, Saulsville, Danville, Laudium, Valhalla, Erasmia, Rua Vista,... 

Power lines

Investors need to rethink IPP funding to ensure sector sustainability – RMB

By: Donna Slater     16th March 2022 A deregulated electricity sector is an “enormous opportunity” for South Africa, bringing the country more in line with international best practice and helping it tackle generating deficits, as well as building in resilience, reports investment bank Rand Merchant Bank (RMB). However, for private... 

Drones successful in deterring railway cable theft syndicates 

By: Donna Slater     15th March 2022 Johannesburg-based unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) operator and developer UAV & Drone Solutions (UDS) proposes that government departments and State-owned entities (SOEs) use, to a far greater extent, the services it provides to curb critical infrastructure theft and vandalism. Cable theft for... 

An image of a drone and stolen cables
UAV & Drone Solutions provides eyes in the sky, day or night, to deter infrastructure criminals and identify areas of concern

South Africa's energy crisis  

11th March 2022 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about what led to the latest bout of load-shedding, the cost to Eskom of having to burn huge amounts of diesel at its open cycle gas turbines, the outlook for the electricity generation sector for the rest of this... 

Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer
Terence Creamer unpacks South Africa's energy crisis (Camera & Editing: Nicholas Boyd)

Eskom, Hawks swoop on cable theft syndicate in Mpumalanga 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      9th March 2022 Power utility Eskom reports that its investigators, along with members of the Vosman South African Police Service (SAPS) and the Hawks' Serious Organised Crime Unit on March 8 arrested at least 14 suspects involved in alleged cable theft. The suspects were arrested during the raid of premises in... 

Vandalised infrastructure on the 400 kV Vulcan transmission line
Vandalised infrastructure on the 400 kV Vulcan transmission line

Stage 4 load-shedding kicks in on Wednesday morning

By: News24Wire      9th March 2022 Eskom has announced that Stage 4 load-shedding will be implemented from 09:00 on Wednesday morning until 05:00 on Friday.  Thereafter load-shedding will be lowered to Stage 2 until 05:00 on Monday.  

Electricity pylons

Women keen to participate in energy efficiency projects – DMRE

By: Donna Slater     8th March 2022 Studies indicate that women want to participate in the energy sector, and especially within the energy efficiency sector, both of which currently have poor representation of women, Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) gender mainstreaming and transformation national coordinator... 

Eskom to continue power cuts until Saturday morning

By: Reuters     8th March 2022 Power utility Eskom said on Tuesday it will continue power cuts in the country until 05:00 on Saturday as many of the power plant units broke down on Monday and are under repair. The power cuts, called Stage 2 load-shedding in South Africa, started from 17:00 on Monday. 

Eskom power lines

Eskom to implement Stage 2 load-shedding from 17:00 on Monday

By: Creamer Media Reporter      7th March 2022 Power utility Eskom will implement Stage 2 load-shedding from 17:00 on Monday to 05:00 on Wednesday morning, as Medupi Unit 3 had also broken down. Earlier, Eskom announced load-shedding would begin at 21:00 on Monday. 

One of Eskom's coal-fired power stations

Cyber, electricity, riot insurance risks becoming increasingly complicated to manage

By: Schalk Burger     1st March 2022 South Africa's infrastructure is vulnerable to cyberattacks, as highlighted during 2021, while the risk of the electricity grid's failure accelerated in 2021. There are also concerns that a repeat of the riots experienced in July last year could be on the horizon in 2022, says insurance company... 

South Africa targets cable thieves holding economy to ransom

By: Bloomberg     24th February 2022 South Africa’s government intends making it mandatory for all metal traders to get licenses and prevent them from dealing in cash, a measure aimed at combating a massive illegal trade in cables and wiring stripped from rail, power and telecommunication lines. Traders will also be required to... 

Godongwana urges Eskom to sell assets as he confirms R88bn in new support 

By: Terence Creamer     23rd February 2022 Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana confirmed that Eskom will receive a further R88-billion in government support until 2025/26 and that a comprehensive debt solution was still being explored for the financially unsustainable State-owned electricity producer. The support comes in addition to the... 

An image of Eskom's head office

Eskom considers selling assets as bailout prospects fade

By: Bloomberg     23rd February 2022 Eskom Holdings, South Africa’s indebted power utility, is considering selling distribution assets as prospects of the government taking over about half of its R392-billion obligations dim, people with knowledge of the matter said. State-owned Eskom, which supplies almost all of South Africa’s... 

Image of an Eskom branded vehicle

Police remove 2 000 kg of electrical cables from Gauteng informal settlement

By: News24Wire      23rd February 2022 City Power disconnected electrical cables, worth R5-million, which had been used for illegal electricity connection in Gauteng. City Power's Revenue Protection Unit conducted an operation to cut off illegal electrical connections at informal settlements areas surrounding Rabie Ridge-Kanana... 

City of Cape Town says future IPP rounds will cater for wheeling, but not round one  

By: Terence Creamer     18th February 2022 The City of Cape Town has defended its decision not to accept bids for wheeled electricity as part of its first independent power producer (IPP) procurement round but says future tenders will cater for wheeling. The city aims to enter into 20-year power purchase agreements (PPAs) with multiple... 

The City of Cape Town
The City of Cape Town

South Africa's changing electricity supply industry  

18th February 2022   Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the release of the Electricity Regulation Amendment Bill and the Electricity Pricing Policy for public comment; changes that are under way at Eskom to align it with the future structure of the electricity... 

Terence Creamer image
South Africa's changing electricity supply industry

Named and shamed: Tshwane cuts power to SARS, SAPS and Gautrain station over 'non-payment' of bills  

By: News24Wire      15th February 2022 The City of Tshwane on Tuesday cut the power supply to the South African Revenue Service (SARS), the SA Police Service (SAPS) headquarters, and the Gautrain station in Hatfield. The City said Gautrain owed R10-million and had last paid its account in 2020. 

Hatfield Gautrain Station
Photo by Creamer Media
Hatfield Gautrain Station

South Africa weighs taking on Eskom’s $26-billion debt, IMF says

By: Bloomberg     14th February 2022 South Africa’s government is considering taking over part or all of Eskom Holdings’ R392-billion debt as it seeks to restructure the cash-strapped power utility’s loan obligations, according to the International Monetary Fund. Eskom’s financial position is of particular concern and requires a... 

Electricity Regulation Amendment Bill points to far-reaching structural changes 

By: Terence Creamer     11th February 2022 The market structure section inserted into the Electricity Regulation Amendment Bill provides for a shift to a competitive multimarket electricity supply industry, which represents a significant departure from South Africa’s long-standing vertically integrated model monopolised by Eskom.... 

Electricity Regulation Amendment Bill points to far-reaching structural changes

Earth & Wire to build 1 300 MW transmission substation in Eastern Cape

By: Schalk Burger     11th February 2022 Independent electricity retailer Earth & Wire has secured land and servitudes, executed the environmental studies and received environmental approval to build a 1 300 MW transmission substation close to Somerset East, in the Eastern Cape. It plans to start construction on the substation later... 

Power station managers in crosshairs as sharp deterioration in plant performance triggers new round of load-shedding  

By: Terence Creamer     7th February 2022 Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter reports that action will be taken against management at some power stations after an unexpectedly sharp deterioration in the performance of certain coal-fired generators on Monday, which precipitated the re-introduction of load-shedding only 24 hours after rotational... 

Eskom power lines

Stage 2 load-shedding resumes on Monday night  

By: News24Wire      7th February 2022 Power utility Eskom has announced that it will implement Stage 2 load-shedding from 21:00 on Monday night until 05:00 on Tuesday. "Further breakdowns could force Eskom to implement load-shedding sooner or to extend the load-shedding beyond Tuesday morning." This is due to more breakdowns in... 

Electricity pylons

Eskom insists it has ‘shovel-ready projects’ amid questions over maturity of pipeline  

By: Terence Creamer     7th February 2022 Electricity utility Eskom insists that it has a pipeline of generation, transmission and distribution projects that it could start implementing immediately should it secure access to “finance, human resources and expedited regulatory approvals”. During a recent interview, Andre de Ruyter told... 

Eskom keen to kick-off Just Energy Transition strategy at Komati this year
Eskom keen to kick-off Just Energy Transition strategy at Komati this year

Load-shedding reduced to Stage 1 on Friday night

By: News24Wire      4th February 2022 Power utility Eskom will reduce load-shedding to Stage 1 from 21:00 on Friday night until 05:00 on Monday morning. This was thanks in part to a return to service of a generating unit at Kusile, and a recovery of emergency power supplies. 

A photo of power lines

Eskom's latest round of load-shedding unpacked  

4th February 2022 Eskom instituted its first round of load-shedding this week after a short period of reprieve. Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer joins me to discuss the causes of the latest cuts and the prognosis for 2022.   

Photo of Terence Creamer
Eskom's latest round of load-shedding unpacked

Policies drive gas interest

By: Halima Frost     4th February 2022 The regulatory environment for environmental policies and decreasing emissions is a key driver when a boiler owner decides to convert to using natural gas as a fuel source, says natural gas supplier Egoli Gas MD Vishal Pooran. “Natural gas-fuelled boiler studies have shown an overwhelmingly... 

A large gas fueled boiler inside a building used in industrial applications
GOING GAS The amount of companies moving to gas fueled burners owing to an increased interest in going green has grown substantially

Cape Town, Ekurhuleni serious about independent power as SA battles load-shedding  

By: News24Wire      3rd February 2022 As the country battles with stage 2 load-shedding, some of the country's biggest municipalities are working to reduce their reliance on Eskom in favour of Independent Power Producers. Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis on Wednesday issued a statement indicating the city's plans to launch new... 

Solar panels and wind turbines

Eskom to implement stage 2 load-shedding until next week Monday  

By: News24Wire      2nd February 2022 Power utility Eskom has announced that it will implement stage 2 load-shedding from 11:00 on Wednesday morning to 05:00 next week Monday.  "This load-shedding is necessary due to a shortage of generation capacity following breakdowns of two more generating units during the night," the utility said. 

Eskom power lines

Green energy transition will help South Africa become more resilient, competitive   

By: Schalk Burger     28th January 2022 South Africa needs more power generation to overcome the supply gap and underpin economic growth, and investments by private companies, including mining houses, are essential to close that gap. Renewable energy projects provide good economic prospects, help to decarbonise the mining sector and... 

Solar panels installed by Cennergi
Creamer Media on January 28 hosted a webinar on decarbonisation and going green in the mining sector. Video and editing: Nicholas Boyd.

SAWEA chair sees 100 MW reform unlocking wind investments in Mpumalanga 

By: Terence Creamer     28th January 2022 The chairperson of the South African Wind Energy Association (SAWEA) says the industry is well placed to take advantage of both the 100 MW reform and recent moves to release 36 000 ha of Eskom land in the grid-rich Mpumalanga province to accelerate renewables investments and facilitate a just... 

South African Wind Energy Association chair Mercia Grimbeek
South African Wind Energy Association chair Mercia Grimbeek

Eskom cuts power to a part of Soweto after residents stop installation of prepaid meters

By: News24Wire      28th January 2022 Eskom cut power supply to certain parts of Dlamini in Soweto on Friday after residents allegedly denied them access to the area to install prepaid split meters. Eskom's senior operations and maintenance manager Mashangu Xivambu said this happened despite the power utility engaging with community... 

Electricity power lines

Eskom state of the system update  

28th January 2022 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the highlights of Eskom's latest state of the system briefing, Eskom's maintenance backlogs and the outlook for load-shedding for this year. 

Photo of Terence Creamer
Eskom state of the system update

Ramaphosa told by advisers to focus on national energy crisis

By: Bloomberg     28th January 2022 President Cyril Ramaphosa was told to cut bureaucracy and focus on fixing the country’s energy crisis if he wants to revive Africa’s most industrialized economy. Water, transport and port services must be “dramatically improved,” the Presidential Economic Advisory Council (PEAC) said in a... 

JSE has role to play in sustainable energy transition

By: Cameron Mackay     28th January 2022 The JSE has a role to play in creating an enabling environment for more sustainable practices, particularly in terms of South Africa’s transition to using renewable energies, JSE chief sustainability officer Shameela Soobramoney stated at the Southern Africa-Europe CEO Dialogue event hosted in... 

Solving transmission bottlenecks vital for unlocking supply

By: Cameron Mackay     28th January 2022 Overcoming energy transmission congestion is vital to stabilise energy supply in South Africa and, to ensure that energy supply meets demand, transmission assessments and upgrades need to be conducted to allow for energy access from resource-rich solar and wind areas, states renewable-energy... 

Image of EGP RSA country manager William Price
WILLIAM PRICE Many of the country’s load centres are situated in coal production areas, where the transmission grid has been designed to deliver energy to large populations

SA’s green energy outlook for 2022

By: Cameron Mackay     28th January 2022 With a background in electrical engineering, “a knack for business, and a passion for sustainability”, Norwegian global renewables company Scatec Southern Africa GM Jan Fourie has specialised in renewable energy projects for over a decade. He says his love for South Africa and the natural... 

Image of solar panels
RENEWABLE UPTAKE Scatec’s new project, which falls under the RMIPPPP, includes a 150 MW flagship twin hybrid PV-and-storage site in the Northern Cape
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