Yesterday, Eskom received a lifeline in the form of 50 million litres of diesel from PetroSA. Diesel isn’t free – and someone needs to pay the bill. It won’t be Eskom – at least not for the time being. It was the power provider’s poor management of money and maintenance that got the country into this mess in the first place. Who then? According to energy analyst Clyde Mallinson, it could be South Africans covering the bill.
The 50 million litres of diesel arrived at the Ankerlig and Gourikwa power stations yesterday, which allowed Eskom to downgrade the country to Stage 3 load shedding. Don’t expect it to last forever however – the diesel is expected to only last for the next two weeks. After that, we’re right back where we started unless someone else starts paying for the fuel.
Check out the new schedules on EskomSePush to avoid any surprises.
Courtesy of the diesel recently supplied by PetroSA, loadshedding will be reduced to Stage 3 during the night throughout the weekend. pic.twitter.com/QLJeCLhsLm
— Eskom Hld SOC Ltd (@Eskom_SA) November 24, 2022
Making it our problem (again)
Speaking with 702, Mallinson said that Eskom would likely end up approaching the National Treasury, saying “either you pay us to pay them, or you pay them directly.”
“In the past, when Eskom overspent their budget on diesel, they got rapped on the knuckles by Nersa, (National Energy Regulator of South Africa) which said, ‘you didn’t prudently spend your money, you should have gotten more energy out of the coal stations’,” said Mallinson.
Yeah, that turned out well.
The likely conclusion is that taxpayer money will be funnelled into bailing out Eskom, yet again. Finance minister Enoch Godongwana and Pravin Gordhan are awaiting evaluation from the National Treasury of a plan that could see more money flowing in for Eskom’s diesel troubles. Should that fall through, it won’t be good for the country’s power situation.