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Eskom says that there is no diesel left in its tank

empty fuel tank image

Eskom says it doesn’t have enough diesel to run its emergency power fleet of open-cycle gas turbine power plants according to MyBroadband.

The power company said on Friday, “Changes in the stages of load-shedding will be more random because diesel generation capacity is no longer there to act as a buffer between unit breakdowns.”

“The stage 4 load-shedding plan will stay in place until further notice.”

Eskom said that it had to move to stage 4 because there were so many breakdowns and not enough emergency power reserves.

“A generating unit at each of the Kendal and Kriel power stations has been shut down since Friday morning so that it can be fixed,” Eskom said.

“Capacity constraints have been made worse by the fact that each of the Arnot, Grootvlei, Hendrina, and Tutuka power stations took longer than expected to put back into service one of their units.”

Eskom said that one unit at each of the Camden, Kriel, and Tutuka power stations, as well as two units at the Majuba power station, had been put back into service.

“Right now, 4,887MW is down for planned maintenance, and another 15,320MW is down because of breakdowns.”

Eskom said it would send out a new update as soon as something important changed.

Eskom said during its State of the System briefing on Tuesday that it was working on major repairs and capital projects.

So, it warned that load-shedding would last for a long time in South Africa over the next six to twelve months.

Eskom said that the projects and repairs would take away more than 2,300MW of the system’s ability to make electricity. About 1,000MW is about one stage of load-shedding.

The state-owned power company said that it had to use a lot of dam water and diesel energy reserves at its pumped storage schemes and open-cycle gas turbines because of the number of breakdowns.

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Eskom also said that the collapse of the flue-gas duct leading out of Unit 1 of the Kusile power station had made it very hard for the utility to improve the amount of power it could make.

The collapse has caused more than just the need to shut down Unit 1. As a safety measure, Eskom has put off putting Units 2 and 3 back into service.

Eskom said that only Unit 4 is being used at Kusile right now.

The COO of Eskom, Jan Oberholzer, said that their best guess was that fixing Kusile’s flue-gas duct would take at least six months.

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