Energy experts Ted Blom and Dr Grové Steyn, who serves on the Presidential Task Team on Eskom, were part of a panel discussion at the African Utility Week and POWERGEN Africa conference and exhibition in Cape Town. It covered issues relating to the future of Eskom, the planned unbundling of the utility and energy in a future with climate change.
Ted Blom did not hold back on what his thoughts were on the current situation with Eskom, he had the following to say:
“Eskom’s governance has collapsed. We don’t know who is running Eskom because it certainly does not look like it is the board. All it can be is a third force,”
“We simply do not know who is held responsible because it is not maintained properly and not run properly. So, in terms of Eskom of the future – it’s already dead in the morgue. All we are throwing money at is for more people to be corrupt,”
He is of the opinion that Eskom has been terribly mismanaged citing the Medupi plant, who was quoted R33 billion to build as an example:
“A year ago, I went back to Eskom to verify that amount and today Medupi is running at R170 billion for a half-finished project. If that is not corruption and mismanagement, then I don’t know what is and I don’t understand why we have to pay for that,”
Dr Grové Steyn had some thoughts to share with regards to Eskom’s financial woes, implying that Eskom is indeed a “debt trap”, as he put it. It was his remarks on Eskom’s relevance in the future of energy that was quite interesting, he had this to say;
“The Eskom of large-scale coal-fired power stations is not the future anymore, If Eskom is not going to be the only party generating power (in the future), what will Eskom look like? That is an important question we do not have an answer for,”
This exhibition and conference ended on Thursday and took place at the CTICC, Cape Town.