• November 3, 2023 8:38 pm

South Africa’s Soaring Solar Growth Begins to Impact Eskom’s Finances

Oct 9, 2023
South Africa's Soaring Solar Growth Begins to Impact Eskom's Finances
South Africa’s Soaring Solar : Rapid growth in rooftop solar power generation in South Africa has had significant implications for both Eskom Holdings Ltd and municipalities responsible for electricity distribution. Here are the key points regarding this development:

South Africa’s Soaring Solar Growth Begins to Impact Eskom’s Finances

Fourfold Increase in Rooftop Solar Capacity

South Africa has witnessed a nearly fourfold increase in rooftop solar power generation capacity within a year, up to March. This surge is attributed to frequent power outages, prompting households and businesses to invest in solar panels.

Reduction in Eskom’s Sales

The proliferation of rooftop solar installations has led to a 2.3% reduction in sales for Eskom Holdings Ltd, the national utility company. This decline in revenue is due to consumers relying less on Eskom’s electricity supply.

Revenue Loss for Municipalities

The Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality, home to over 700,000 residents, has experienced a revenue loss of R350 million ($18 million) as a direct result of the increased adoption of rooftop solar. This loss impacts the municipality’s ability to provide essential services.

Rooftop Solar Capacity Growth

As of the end of August, South Africa had rooftop solar panels with a combined capacity of 4,481MW. This represents a substantial increase of 2,500MW compared to the previous year.

Exclusion of Commercial Solar Plants

The reported capacity excludes solar panels incorporated into commercial plants developed by private companies to contribute electricity to the national grid.

The rapid expansion of rooftop solar generation highlights the country’s response to electricity challenges but has financial implications for both Eskom and municipalities. While it reduces dependence on the national grid, it poses challenges for utilities and local governments grappling with revenue losses.

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