12 November 2012 – On a visit to the four by 333 MW Ingula pumped storage project under construction, South Africa’s president Jacob Zuma said that the statistics from the country’s Census 2011 indicates that 84% of the 51.7 million people in the country have access to electricity. “This is an important milestone especially given the fact that only 58% of households had access to electricity in 1996 while the figure was 70% in 2001.”
He also pointed out that over the next eight years more than R340 billion will be spent on Eskom’s new build programme.This investment will go towards completing projects that Eskom committed to a number of years ago. This will bring on line a further 11,641 MW of new capacity in the short-term, adding to the existing 40,000 MWof capacity that Eskom has.
In 2006 Eskom received a licence to build the Medupi power station in Lephalale, Limpopo, the first new coal-fired power station in more than 20 years, and with a capacity of 4,764 MW.The first unit at the power station is scheduled to be commissioned in 2013.
In 2008 Eskom began construction of the Kusile power station, a coalfired power station of similar size to Medupi, being built near Emalahleni in the Mpumalanga province.The station is expected to be completed in 2016/17.
The Ingula pumped storage project is scheduled to come on line during 2014, with a unit being commissioned each quarter of that year.