Eskom: We will have to reduce diesel reliance

Part of the money Eskom hoped to recover was needed to pay for diesel used to operate gas turbines.

Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Eskom says it will have to make do with the funds it's has been allowed to recover, but this means it will have to reduce its reliance on diesel.

The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) yesterday approved a 9.4 percent tariff hike, meaning the utility can recover R11.2 billion - about half the amount it had asked for.

Part of the money Eskom was hoping to recover was needed to pay for the diesel it used to operate open cycle gas turbines.

The utility's Khulu Phasiwe says turbines were used to avoid load shedding.

"Going forward, in emergency situations, we are not going to use a lot of diesel as we used to before. But most importantly, what we are going to do is improve the performance of our coal fired power station and it will drastically reduce the need to use diesel."

Meanwhile, Gauteng Premier David Makhura has expressed concern over the Eskom hike and the five percent increase in e-tolls.

Makhura said the hikes were cause for concern as they expected to have a negative impact on citizens.

He said the cost of living in Gauteng was already burdensome for many residents.

"Especially in a province like ours where the cost of living is very high; the cost of energy, food and transport are all extremely high. So I do share the concern with the increases that have been granted."