Harmony seeks Eskom relief after continual loadshedding threatens productive capacity

HARMONY Gold said it would be forced to cut productive activities at its mines following a new wave of rolling blackouts imposed by Eskom this year.

Eskom is rotating loadshedding of some 1,000MW to 2,000MW across the national grid on a continual basis, including weekends, as it seeks to repair existing fleet whilst improving the productive capacity of its new projects. Weekends are when mining companies such as Harmony catch up on non-essential mining operations such as ore hoisting and surface dumps re-treatment.

“We have continuous stage 1 and stage 2 loadshedding which means we have to cut 10% of our power usage and that’s not a good outcome for us,” said Peter Steenkamp, CEO of Harmony Gold. “In the past, we can could make up (lost operations) at the weekends or nighttime when there was no loadshedding.

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