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Eskom savings plan will be expensive

Medupi “’ one of the two
power stations currently
under construction and
due to start supply power
by the end of 2012
Johannesburg, South Africa — ESI-AFRICA.COM — 30 August 2011 – The Democratic Alliance has warned that the mandatory savings plan of South African national power utility Eskom Holdings could prove expensive.

Last week, Eskom said that due to the tight power supply situation and the need to do routine maintenance at several power plants, some large industrial consumers will be expected to consume less electricity over the next few months.

DA spokesperson on energy David Ross said he would ask Eskom CEO Brain Dames to disclose how expensive these savings agreements would be. Demand market participation agreements dictate the rate at which Eskom reimburses large industrial consumers for productivity losses due to power cuts.

Power outages are likely to take place over the next few months and this would be expensive, Ross said. He called for these agreements to be transparent, particularly with regard to the compensation rate for lost productivity.

On Thursday, public enterprises minister Malusi Gigaba warned that electricity supply would become increasingly tight until the end of 2012. This is when Eskom’s new base-load power stations start to deliver power into the grid.

Gigaba said the next challenge facing electricity supply security would be the summer maintenance season for Eskom.