-Edited by Bev Mortimer- Eskom is to intensify its Demand Side Management (DSM) interventions to manage supply and demand of electricity in South Africa.
Speaking at a National Demand Management Indaba meeting yesterday, Eskom Board Chairperson, Mpho Makwana, said. DSM programmes allow for effective management of customers’ energy consumption to reduce peak demand or overall consumption during specific periods.
“DSM is not a South African concept, Makwana said. “It is global phenomenon with the best-in-class countries already using technology to manage demand. The array of policy measures to incentivise demand-side participation, promote energy conservation and reduce peak demand can be replicated in our country.”
The objective of the Indaba was to create a platform for diverse role-players to have robust constructive discussions, share international experiences and case studies on Demand Side Management, Energy Efficiency, and Demand Response. Collaborative proposals and solutions around curbing electricity demand and ensuring consistent electricity supply in the short, medium, and long-term were presented and discussed. Eskom also unpacked the Demand Response and Distribution Demand Management Programme launched earlier this month of April, and the importance of each programme.
Eskom says it has made some strides in a range of DSM initiatives, including energy efficiency, demand response, distributed generation, and energy storage. The organisation has been driving energy efficiency programmes and piloted energy-saving initiatives such as switching from the traditional incandescent light bulbs (ICLs) to compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs).
Eskom continues to drive the “Use electricity smartly” campaign which is aimed at empowering South Africans with the necessary information to reduce electricity usage during the evening peak period (5pm to 9pm).
Eskom also said some of its larger customers have benefitted from its demand response programmes which offer incentives to voluntarily reduce their energy consumption during peak demand periods. This is a mechanism Eskom uses to minimise the stages of load-shedding or avert the implementation of load-shedding where possible.
“DSM programmes can be more effective through a collaborative approach. I acknowledge and thank our large customers who are participating in the Eskom’s DSM initiatives,” Makwana said in his closure speech. “We’d like to encourage and invite all stakeholders from businesses, industries to residential customers to come on board.
“I also thank South Africans for heeding the call to use electricity sparingly and efficiently to help alleviate the pressure on the power system. Eskom is grateful to the National Energy Crisis Committee (NECOM) for coordinating the National Demand Side Management Indaba.
“It is through initiatives such as these that we can partner and strive for a sustainable future,” Makwana added.