May 17, 2013
Monopoly on power must endBack
Africa|CoAL|Cogeneration|Consulting|Energy|Eskom|Frost|PROJECT|Projects|Resources|System|Water|Africa|South Africa|Ancillary Services|Cogeneration|Energy|Energy Charge|Energy Mix|Energy Production|Energy-charge Component|Power Generation|Power Producers|Power-generation|Environmental|Cogeneration|Cornelis Van Der Waal|Eskom|Power|Water|South Africa
© Reuse this
Since the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) decided to grant Eskom an 8% increase, instead of the requested 16% average increase a year over five years, new project development will prove to be one of the biggest challenges in Eskom’s long-term planning, he says.
Eskom admits on its website that the introduction of private-sector generation has multiple benefits. “It will contribute greatly to the diversification of the supply and nature of energy production, assist in introducing new skills and capital to the industry and enable the benchmarking of performance and pricing,” states the utility.
Eskom further states on its website that its application for revenue over five years translated into an average price increase of 13% for its needs and 3% to support the introduction of IPPs into the country’s energy mix, amounting to 16%. “This is a nominal price increase of 67c/kWh from the current average of 61c/kWh in 2012/13, to an average price level of 128c/kWh in 2017/18,” says Eskom.
The approved 8% tariff increase, which was implemented by the utility on April 1, implies that there will be an increase on the homelight 20A customers consuming up to 350 kWh/m, which will be equivalent to an inflation of 5.6%.
The average price increase for all other residential customers with homelight 60A and homepower will be 8%. Nersa points out in a report, released on February 28, that this will be in line with the third multiyear price determination (MYPD3) Eskom control period, which runs from 2013-2017.
All tariff cross-subsidies, both received and paid, must be shown transparently. These subsidies pertain to affordability subsidies, low-voltage subsidies and historic electrification and network subsidies in large power customer urban tariffs.
Nersa also notes in the report that the use-of-system charges must be based on the cost-per-voltage level for all large power customers. Where there are low-voltage subsidies, these must be transparently shown as a low-voltage subsidy charge.
The report explains that the reliability and service charge covering the cost of providing ancillary services, embedded in the energy charge, must be unbundled for large power tariffs. “The environmental levy charge must be included in the energy-charge component of the tariff and not shown separately. Eskom must ensure that alternative tariff options, other than time-of-use tariffs, are available to municipalities that have a predominantly residential load mix,” the report further states.
The overall costs have increased by 178.60% from the last year of the MYPD2 (2012/13) to the first year of the MYPD3 (2013/14). Some of the reasons provided for the tariff hike are the funding of electrification, new connections and an increase in customer-service costs to improve revenue collection in Soweto.
In the absence of proper justification for the increases and project list, Nersa said it limited the increases to inflation-related increases and expected capacity expansion for the MYPD3 control period, resulting in an adjustment of more than R47-billion.
MYPD3 Control Period
The cost of basic natural resources used to produce electricity, including coal, water, biomass and sorbent, which excludes the IPPs, will increase at an average of 8.6% a year for Eskom requirements and by 10% a year once IPPs are incorporated, highlights Nersa.
“Eskom’s operating costs increase by an average of just more than 8% a year. These costs include the maintenance of existing plant and employee costs. Eskom currently has more than 44 000 people on its payroll and this will increase to 45 500 over the MYPD3 period. Most of Eskom’s power stations are in their midlife and require substantial spending on mainte- nance and refurbishment if their performance is to be sustained and improved,” outlines Nersa.
“This means that maintenance costs will continue to increase at a higher rate than that of inflation. Depreciation is set to rise at a yearly average of 10% over the MYPD3 period as we phase in the depreciated replacement valuation method as per government’s Electricity Pricing Policy,” Nersa explains.
Eskom points out that it is crucial that the private sector plays a role in dealing with the future electricity needs of the country. This will reduce the funding burden on government; relieve the borrowing requirements of Eskom; and introduce generation technologies that Eskom may not consider as part of its core function, which may play an important role in the future electricity supply options, particularly off-grid, dis- tributed generation, cogeneration and small-scale renewable projects.
“Given Nersa’s decision, Eskom would still like to remain the baseload supplier in the country. Therefore, it is important for Eskom to maintain its plans for projects such as those for capacity expansions. However, Eskom must find and secure ways to fund these projects, as a lack of funding is limiting its progress,” Van der Waal concludes.
Edited by: Tracy Hancock© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Electricity News
Updated 7 hours ago South African electricity tariffs are likely to increase by more than the 8% already sanctioned for the year starting April 1, 2015, after the energy regulator determined on Wednesday that Eskom had under recovered R7.82-billion in revenue between 2010 and 2013. The...
Electricity producer Eskom has, for the first time, offered a detailed timeline for the synchronisation of Medupi Unit 6, which is officially scheduled for December 15, 2014. Addressing a joint meeting of the Portfolio Committees on Public Enterprises and Energy on...
Updated 3 hours ago Nigeria-focused oil and gas explorer Oando Energy Resources (OER) on Wednesday announced that it had completed the acquisition of the Nigerian upstream oil and gas business of New York-listed ConocoPhillips for a total cash consideration of $1.5-billion as well as a...
Updated 3 hours ago The disciplinary hearing of telecommunications giant Telkom’s suspended CFO Jacques Schindehütte was set to resume next Wednesday. Telkom said it hoped the hearing would result in a definitive resolution on the matter of Schindehütte’s personal conduct after a...
Updated 4 hours ago While unauthorised expenditure by South Africa’s municipalities has declined year-on-year, irregular expenditure has recorded a R2-billion increase as municipalities failed to follow legislated procurement procedures, the latest Auditor-General South Africa audit...
Recent Research Reports
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Road and Rail 2014 (PDF Report)
This six-page brief covers key developments in the road and rail industries over the past 12 months, including details of South Africa’s road and rail network and prospects for both sectors.
Real Economy Insight: Steel 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the steel industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the global and South African steel and stainless steel markets, South Africa’s major steel producers and events that have shaped these markets.
This Week's Magazine
Multinational semiconductor chipmaker corporation Intel announced its national campaign to further acquire partners to drive its She Will Connect programme, an initiative that aims to expand digital literacy skills to young women in developing countries, further into...
South Africa's MeerKAT radio telescope array programme should get back on schedule within a few months. This assurance has been given by SKA South Africa (SKA SA) associate director: science and technology Prof Justin Jonas. Early last month, Science and Technology...
The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA’s) Metrorail service will remain a subsidised service following its current multibillion-rand rolling stock, station, depot and signalling upgrade programme. PRASA group CEO Lucky Montana has allayed fears that...
The uncertainties around the remediation of affected areas as addressed in the Contaminated Land Provisions in the National Environmental Management: Waste Act No 59 of 2008 will possibly spark litigation and disputes between landowners and businesses, contractors...
South Africa is currently the largest component of the African Development Bank’s (AfDB’s) active portfolio in Southern Africa, comprising 62.5% of the bank’s $7.9-billion exposure to the 12-country region – the second largest beneficiary is Mauritius, which...