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South Africa Boosting Renewable Power

FILE - A local walks past electricity pylons during frequent power outages from South African utility Eskom, caused by its aging coal-fired plants, in Orlando, Soweto, South Africa, on Sept. 28, 2022.

JOHANNESBURG — South Africa expects more than 5,500 megawatts (MW) of additional renewable energy projects to come online by 2026, electricity minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa said on Tuesday.

Minister Ramokgopa added that 66,000 MW of wind and solar projects were under development across the country.

South Africa is in the midst of its worst electricity crisis ever, with households and businesses facing hours of daily scheduled power cuts due to repeated breakdowns at state utility Eskom's ailing fleet of coal power stations.

The state-owned-utility Eskom has resorted to frequent power outages, so-called "l0ad shedding" due to aged, faulty generation equipment.

The outages not only put the public and business sector in the dark, but also, are blamed for holding back South Africa's GDP growth.

some analysts have started to turn more optimistic that the government will make progress in reducing the intensity of the power cuts, helping the rand currency recover from a record low touched on June 1.