Electricity: households ‘must do their bit’


13 January 2012

While South Africa’s big electricity users were doing their bit by cutting power consumption during Eskom’s summer maintenance season, the country’s households were still not helping out by switching off lights and unused appliances, the state company warned on Thursday.

Eskom said that while its systems had improved since the call went out to save electricity on Monday, residential households were still not cutting their power consumption enough.

The power utility said big organisations had helped out by cutting their electricity consumption this week.

The companies had heeded to a warning from Eskom that its systems were running on a very tight reserve margin as it carried out maintenance on several power stations.

The utility’s Hilary Joffe said ordinary households needed to do their bit by switching off lights and appliances they were not using.

“We have not seen any efficiency on the residential side, and the demand does seem to be rising,” Joffe said.

Should residential households not heed to the call, it is possible that Eskom could initiate rolling blackouts to complete its maintenance.