Load Shedding Forecasts for South Africa – What to Expect in 2022

Professional services firm PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers) released some shocking predictions on load shedding for the year ahead. In their forecast notes, PwC stated that load shedding increased by 38% in 2021, with over 2,400-gigawatt-hours (GWh) shed over the course of the year. This comes to an estimate of 1,136 hours of outages – roughly three hours per calendar day. 

Using these figures to determine the impact that load shedding has had on the economy over the past year, PwC estimated a reduction of up to 3.1% in real GDP growth. This has resulted in the loss of 400,000 potential jobs.  

Talking to Business Tech, PwC stated, “According to the Presidency, South Africa has a shortfall of around 4,000MW of electricity generating power. It is possible that this shortfall is significantly larger given that Eskom’s energy availability factor (EAF) was revised downward from 72% to 63% in its latest Medium-Term System Adequacy Outlook (2022-2026).” 

Load Shedding Forecasts for 2022

Despite a push for a 20.5% rates increase, Nersa has finally approved a 9.6%. This is nearly half the increase expected by the power giant. Citing factors such as increased carbon taxes and the need to source power from independent producers, Eskom has noted that the rejection of their proposed increase may have an impact on their financial sustainability. This may further affect the risk of increased load shedding. 

Additional battles are also putting strain on Eskom, such as Members of Parliament’s finance watchdog Scopa voicing concerns after CEO Andre de Ruyter and Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan failed to attend a meeting with the committee to discuss contract deviations. Read the EWN report to get the latest on this story.

There have also been additional financial battles, including Ekurhuleni’s alleged R544m Eskom debt. The power company has also been considering a move to sell assets as the prospect of bailout fades, hoping to reduce its borrowings to about R200bn. 

With the huge financial pressure Eskom is currently facing, it is not surprising that consumers will pay the price in increased issues with interrupted power supplies, poorly maintained structures and the myriad other problems resulting in load shedding.

While we do not know what the future will hold for Eskom or consumers, we can recommend taking measures to handle the impact of power outages and increased tariffs. 

At Energy Management Solutions, we offer a range of solutions designed to help you reduce resources. Contact us today to learn more about our utility management and comprehensive energy management services, and let us help your business navigate the challenges of load shedding and other power issues.