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Cape Town conference issues government a dire electricity grid warning

by , 19 March 2014

South Africa's in crisis. This because Eskom has completely failed in the one job it needs to do: The production of electricity! Now, this week's Power-Gen Africa conference in Cape Town has directed politicians and the governments with one piece of advice: Stop short-term thinking and planning or else. Here's why…

The only way to curb SA’s electricity power generation problem is to think long-term!

On March the 6th, after days of rain around the country, Eskom instituted its rolling black out plan to prevent plunging the whole country into darkness when its usable coal supplies ran out.

Most people didn’t bat an eye lid. We’ve become relatively immune to Eskom’s inability to keep the electricity grid going.

But how will you feel if this becomes something that happens every other day?

According to the Power-Gen Africa conference, if government doesn’t act NOW, this is the reality South Africa faces.

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Government must “stop short-term energy planning” or else

As Fin24 explains: “In energy terms as well as water and food security, it is necessary to plan for 30 or even 50 years ahead.” So it’s no wonder that at the conference, Lawrence Jones, vice-president of US energy company, Alstom noted that politicians should be prepared to put in place projects that they might not live to see implemented.”

Instead, he said, government has been thinking short-term and giving politics consideration instead of doing what it needs to ensure production of electricity keeps up with demand.

It’s exactly this that’s been Eskom’s downfall over the past 20 years. And we’re reaping the result now where even bad weather brings Eskom’s production of electricity to a complete halt.

While no resolutions were made, we’re hoping government and Eskom took note.

If they didn’t, our electricity grid situation will only get worse. What they need to do is consider investing in possible renewable energy sources like wind-power, solar energy and hydroelectric, to help supplement the electricity grid.

We’ll keep an eye on this story as the conference comes to a close. If any significant resolutions come out of it, we’ll let you know.




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