Load shedding continues to bite as ZESCO increases blackout hours to 6

File:2015 Rolling black outs of up to 8hrs in duration continue to plague Zambian
File:2015 Rolling blackouts of up to 8hrs in duration continue to plague  some Zambians

ZESCO has announced that effective September 3, load management hours will be increased to six hours.

In a statement released to the media, ZESCO said that due to the emergency situation regarding power supply in the country, systems conditions may from time to time dictate extended load shedding hours beyond the stated times, which will be communicated to customers via the Zesco SMS system.

According to Patrick Mwila, Zesco’s strategic and corporate services director, this was mainly due to the limitation of power generation caused by low water levels at the major hydro power plants.

Mwila stated on Friday that the load management hours were being revised upwards to prevent over generation beyond the recommended levels at Kafue Gorge and Kariba North Bank power stations and to ensure that the reduced generation resources available can be stretched to get the nation well into the next rain season around 2020.

He stated that in an effort to provide an improved supply of reliable electricity for everyone, customers and the general public were encouraged to use electricity prudently by ensuring that all non-essential appliances remain switched off when not in use.

Mwila stated that industrial customers were encouraged to apply energy-efficient methods in their production processes to help mitigate the power deficit during this period.

He stated that the new load management schedules for September 2019 would continue to be published, on the Zesco website and the daily newspapers.


    • Small and medium businesses, which should be the driver of the economy are now struggling. This will pull everything else down. ZRA will have less tax coming in, people will lose jobs….etc it looks gloomy, really. My Area is already at 8 hours of load shedding so i am not sure if this announcement is to reduce by 2 hours for me.

    • Ohh…okay, I thought load shedding was a thing of the past !!
      Sept 14 – Zambia will not experience load shedding this year and beyond – EL
      Sept 8 – Energy Minister assures Zambians of zero load shedding this year
      What is the issue and who is lying?
      Ba PF please, this is what you should be focussing on , and NOT chasing HH to explain where he got his riches EVEN after 25 years!! Unless you are a bunch of…..whatever !!!

    • Iwe chi Bongo !d!ot, these f00ls were supposed to invest in infrastructure to ensure there was no more load-shedding after experiencing the ones in 2015, that is being dull! Fi PF what kind of !d!ots are you please?? SO PF thought after 2015 ninhsi there would never be anymore droughts? Mwefipuba mwe!

    • Bongo !d!ot, read what your dull president said in 2018:

      President Lungu opens Parliament
      President Edgar Lungu says he’s doubtful that the country will not experience further power deficit resulting in load shedding this year and beyond.
      President Lungu says as a result of massive investment from both the public and private that are participating in the energy sector, there will be no load shedding in the country.

      So why do you want HH to pee in the dam when this bum of a president said there was already massive investment in the energy sector? Stup!d!ty of the highest order.

    • Bongo, walasa boi!! Kwekwekwekwekwe… Also remember, we are experiencing loadshedding because a certain cabbage in state house use to brag about bringing in investors forgetting that those mines and industries will consume more power. Instead of building power plants, he kept money in reserves…

    • Zambian M0r0n, and where are the power plants you and your stup!d PF party are now building? See why I think all of you are !d!ots? You are laughing about a failure to implement a plan by a former government and then eight years down the line you also have not done anything. Stup!d!ty at its peak.

    • And you are saying he kept money in the reserves, right now our reserves are almost empty but with nothing to show for it so which Government has the bigger f00ls? The one with money in the reserves but no powerplants or the one without money in the reserves and then still no power plants? I say again, ba PF mulifipuba, fact.

  1. What a joke! KK was booted out because of hunger/food riots.
    We are on a dangerous path with power black outs. PF be careful

    • I remember when I was young the first time I heard the word load shedding was because KK was protecting the country’s airspace at night from Ian Smith and RSA bombers but now its due to our lack of foresight

  2. Economy

    Zambia will not experience load shedding this year and beyond – EL
    September 14, 2018

    1871 20 Facebook Twitter

    President Lungu opens Parliament

    President Edgar Lungu says he’s doubtful that the country will not experience further power deficit resulting in load shedding this year and beyond.

    President Lungu says as a result of massive investment from both the public and private that are participating in the energy sector, there will be no load shedding in the country.

    • @Janis, my question exactly.What has this announcement got to do with what we are already experiencing. In my area we’re being load shedded for close to 10 hours.

      Is this announcement being made just to make noise thereby getting on our already irritated nerves? There is a lot of inconsistency with what’s being announced and what’s actually happening on the ground. So maybe they meant another additional 6 hours?

  3. Zesco be honest this is not politics but reality. And you don’t have control over water or rainfall we receive. You are already load shedding 10hrs and you issue statement that you have adjusted to 6hrs? Are you guys for real? Are you telling us that even the Energy Minister does not know that load shedding hours are 10hours now? Zambia,we so gullible that we accept so nonsense as normal

  4. I think they meant to say an additional 6 hours of load shedding. In my area, we are being load shedded for close to 10 hours as it is so now they mean it will be 16hours of load shedding.

  5. Loadshedding is currently thirteen hours in the majority of areas and not this six hours nonsense! In my area when it goes at 14 it comes back at 22:30 is that fcuking six hours?? Luckily I have a genset but I feel horrible for the small businesses that rely on power for their meagre income. Fcuk this government!

  6. The problem is we are LACKING LEADERSHIP TO SQUQRELY FACE THIS PROBLEM!! Sometime this year ZESCO applied to increase tariffs in order to import deficit power.The increment,25% was rather huge coming just a year after 75% increase.Now we have more 6 hours loadshedding,WHY NOT REVISIT THE PROPOSAL BUT WITH SINCERITY RATHER THAN AS A MONEY MAKING VENTURE FOR SOME INDIVIDUALS??WHY NOT IMPORT THE DEFICIT?BETTER WITH SLIGHTLY EXPENSIVE ELECTRICITY 24/7WHICH WE CAN SELF MANAGE THAN EXTENDED LOADSHEDDING REDUCING PRODUCTIVITY!!

  7. Also we were told that if zesco increase the tarrifs for power there will be no load shedding. The prices were increased by 70% and back to load shedding. Remember the day sata was having a rally in chawama and power went. This was during mmd and load shedding was not country wide only a few areas In lusaka. He shouted that if was elected he will stop this nonsense of load shedding and will make sure citizens will have power all the time, he will fire the zesco boss….once elected. Within 6 months to a year the load shedding was 8 hours country wide….remember. no one was spared. Economy was killed just here and has not recovered since

  8. In other news Lusaka water will soon start to rationale water because of increased load shedding I cry my Zambia I cry my beloved country

  9. In my area it is 14 hours without power. When we call zesco their lines are constantly busy. If you are lucky they answer their explanation is there was a fault or maintenance, then load shedding. They fail to explain what is going on. The worst part is that the police station is also affected. Wait until there is a breakout by thieves in cells and they shot the policemen that is when the government will learn a lesson.

  10. They should just start importing power from a ship docked in Mozambique like what they did in 2016 or else the economy will ground to a halt by November if nothing is done to normalize the situation. And obviously as at now Zesco is running at a loss in terms of power units sales due to increased hours of blackouts when power is not being consumed

  11. Its not a sustainable and welcome solution for now we can support them in them managing the load from the customer point of view But it should be understood that load management or Demand side management to balance the reserve margins can work in the short-term What the utility should focus now on wards is how they will reduce the risks in their Generational methods (mix)
    Energy savers and efficiency will help in the short run but in the long run the utility has to increase its output installed capacity and meet the growing need for power within the fall in rainfall
    Since 1975 the rains (hydrology assets) have seen a reducing in trends in the southern part of the country and its likely to…

  12. continue for the foreseeable future to 2050 The annual variability in rainfall patterns is a risk to current capacity and generation methods for Zesco The projected reductions in rainfall(mean annual) for the regions could be as high as -5% to -10% 2050 There will be certainly be increased fluctuation the usual “run on the river” generation methods that have little storage for 2 to 3 rain seasons So hydro power in the Southern part where most power plants are , as opposed to the Northern part that is projected to record increased rainfall activities to 2050, will have reduced capacity to generation even with increased rainfall because of water quality (sedimentation)
    So our utility must work out…

  13. will re-balance and increase its installed generation mix and regions like its done with small hydro’s North and increase the portfolio of other renewable s because thermal is certainly not the cost effective solution and may need water for cooling
    So in term of Risk management It should do duration impacting on reduced water levels on its Revenues ,costs and factor in the Hydrological effect and increase other sources and still remain viable for the future to come Simply load shedding will impact its revenues adversely as costs and financing increase
    It should be basically a balance of to load shed,other sources in the mix and efficiency or demand side but with the Business of Revenue…

  14. of Revenue Growth and Profitability with sustained Generation methods and procurement
    So hydrology depart should now be a focus in risk management and load projections more even as before because the rains of 1975 will not be the same on the Kafue and Zambezi basins with those increased new Projects that will run water quicker than its being stored Most will in the years to come 2060 or so be lie the case of VEZIN DAM if not well managed and sequenced as we have learnt
    We need to keep the utility n focus as a regional primary power Generation company for trade and it may not happen if the mix is not re strategized to 2050 There is the TICAD AFRICA partnership and others to help…

  15. Initially when the story of zesco being sold came up, I was not happy. Why should our state company be sold to the Chinese. But then I thought to myself, what benefit is it to me if the government owns it or the Chinese. What I need is service which the government has failed to provide even though we are being charged exorbitant tarrifs and therefore I have come to the conclusion that I don’t mind if they sell the company, doesn’t make a difference to me. We need power that’s it!

  16. So in the short-term load shedding will help but CONFIRMATION BIAs or Like we say holding on to a losing stock hoping for a better result will not help for years in the future and its not only a tariff Investments decision because if it was other near utilities could be better than our utility

    So if you want to trade power increase your product portfolios and lead the trades

  17. Because i want when i loggon the Zesco Power Trading Platfform i should find trades MA DA MA YA and settle to clear

    The trades must no show the “load shedding schedule” it will be counter strategy to being a regional power trading hub whether i am trading capacity or units or contracts

  18. Well performance to keep lights on has been fair b Vicmalo and Webi and others looking at those performance indicators like CAIDI and SAIDI but future will entail some Generation Portfolio Mix for financial performance including from regional mix one Basin Zambezi. That is what is measured in performance based tariff and other management reviews

    Kafue new is good hoping hydro logical focus performs but in the long-term DER and other renewables will be a Plus in additon to new generation projects We have seen the new addis office there its positive


  19. Its a a vehicle speed meter and the kayani PRESS is okay but there is always a tipping point and we hope behind the paper the strategy is to address the Generation Risks implied in hydro There been systems reinforcement in TT and DS at voltage levels but only refurb of old methods in GE without additional new sustainable tangible capacity It like going through the same old learning curve

  20. Yaa there is a new Generation paradigm and it can be in DER with the utility and Customers working together maintain a healthy National Grid and revenues for the utility It must not be like the customer generating all ts power needs but working together with the utility to integrate DER into the national Grid Its much better that way and create a solid power sector with sustainable auction-able IPPs to achieve and reduce the load-shedding hours on the strained plant

    Money follows innovative ideas and much of it is there to make return on power and increase
    those Plant availability installed


  21. 6 hrs? More like 8 hrs in Solwezi and Ndola. Today we had half an hour – 2pm to 2:30pm – between 6am and 7pm.

    It’s getting worse

  22. It can improve and be managed both by the utility and customers managing like said Sometimes its
    simply a move towards market notices to clients giving those contingent events or non as they fall into the Energy Outlook to 2030 say within the electricity market structure for revenues much needed for the utility capacity-specific revenues
    You know as the demand for power increases to 2030 in increased population and electrification rates and the new EVs,the thought for Energy Mix in Zambia and restructuring the Energy sector in policies should be on gong thing
    With aging assets and increased consumption demand, move towards market notices in THOSE ENERGY OUTLOOKs projected by the utility to 2030…

  23. from say now or a DA will help customers adjust The notice should give extensively the Contingent and Non Contingent events for people to see what is from Water levels and normal like in the SMS texts But since its now market based it should be as per market requirements and restructured energy policies A long-term view approach giving the outlook energy outlook DA MA YA YYA will help for people to restructure their cooling and heating needs and also the utility to adjust
    We need to see the utility up its capacity into regional HUB a positive move towards its own strategy

  24. Simply reading through the CEC new Financials for this quarter and relate broader to Zesco Performance for the quarter 2019 Its better than commonly projected for 2019 given market incidences contingent and non impacting

    So even in load management REVENUE ” maximization using market notices and increased DER will a plus because simply managing the load will not

  25. Its better than best forecast but could be better given the market that is the point but if CEC records “that” and you expert similarities across and related sectors but specific costs and revenue “flexibility” matters how maximized

    It could be better

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