The Morning Live interview below with Ted Blom refers.
The parlous state that Eskom has placed our economy into beggars belief and what scares me the most is the way that this is slowly being revealed – like the frog in the blender the tempo is being ramped up in anticipation of the crescendo. A crescendo that we will not be able to hear because there will be no power for our speakers!
Like everyone else in South Africa I hear debt numbers in the billions and my mind goes numb as it struggles to comprehend the magnitude of the problem.
It seems that Eskom has just failed to come to grips with the lowest of fundamentals. In the interview Blom talks about the ‘Soweto problem’ stemming from 1985 when Soweto was subject to bulk metering of blocks of homes. A typically arrogant way of business employed by the apartheid government. And still today there is bulk metering making it extremely difficult to apportion consumption figures to individual units. Eskom has a myriad tariffs, the extremely unfair Inclined Block Tariff and cosy deals with neighbouring countries and big business.
Can Eskom not see that their fundamentals are wrong?
Even in this day and age we have home owners installing private prepaid electricity meters in their own homes, rooms and flatlets to apportion consumption expense fairly.
I find myself very sad that our own municipality decommissioned and mothballed our local power stations after being sold on the myth of reliance on one power producer. Again that was a misuse of taxpayer money when Eskom sold power at a vastly reduced rate on what we as a local municipality could produce and eventually forcing us to close down our local power stations.
On top of that we have tacit approval of renewable energy but no major support or promotion of the benefits of wind and solar power. One gets the sense that this is very similar to the controversial gun control issue and it is almost like government does not want it’s citizens to have the freedom to be free of the Eskom monopoly.
Fundamentals Eskom, fundamentals – BEFORE the lights go out, please!
Finance Minister Tito Mboweni has cautioned the extra R59 billion for Eskom will come at a significant cost to taxpayers. Tabling the Special Appropriation Bill this week, Mboweni said Eskom finances do not improve, it will have an adverse effect on the country’s already escalating debt. Some say it could even lead to a downgrade by the ratings agencies. Mining and Energy Advisor Ted Blom joins us now to take a closer look at some of the bailouts Eskom’s received over the years and whether this has helped it’s financial situation.