Eskom has today implemented stage two load-shedding due to a shortage of generation capacity.
“Eskom will implement stage two load-shedding from 8am today, which is likely to continue until 11pm. This is due to a shortage of generation capacity as several units are currently on unplanned outages due to technical faults,” it said on Thursday morning.
Eskom moved from stage one to stage two load-shedding on Wednesday.
Stage one of load shedding allows for up to 1 000MW to be shed off the grid, while stage two allows for up to 2 000MW to be shed. Stage three of load shedding allows for up to 4 000MW to be shed.
The power utility said the system remains severely constrained and will remain so for the rest of this week.
“We therefore urge all electricity customers to reduce their consumption in order to reduce the severity of load shedding.”
The utility called on all customers to reduce the load on the electricity grid by urgently switching off geysers, air conditioners, pool pumps and all non-essential appliances throughout the day, which will reduce electricity demand.
City Press has confirmed that Cabinet has been briefed by Eskom about the risk of a total national electricity blackout – and the US embassy in Pretoria has drawn up an evacuation plan partly designed to get its staff out safely if the lights go off in South Africa once and for all.
The consequences of a national blackout are dire – widespread looting, no communications, lack of petrol and diesel, no access to cash and it could take 2 weeks for Eskom to reboot the electrical grid.