South Africa’s Eskom resumes power cuts

The logo of state power utility Eskom is seen outside the Koeberg nuclear power plant near Cape Town, South Africa, March 20, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Hutchings/File Photo
File photo – REUTERS

South Africa’s power utility Eskom resumed nationwide power cuts on Monday, cutting up to 1,000 megawatts (MW) from the grid due to unplanned breakdowns of generating units.

Eskom said late on Sunday there were unplanned breakdowns of generating units with 11,700 MW capacity and planned maintenance outages at 4,963 MW. The utility has a total of around 45,000 MW of generating capacity.

The power cuts, which may last until Thursday, started from 9 a.m. local time (0700 GMT) and will end at 11 p.m.

The utility, which has not implemented any power cuts since Feb. 22, produces more than 90% of South Africa’s electricity, but its ailing fleet of coal-fired plants have struggled to keep up with demand, leading to periodic power shortages.