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Once again, Load shedding is the most heard and most used word in South Africa. SA is currently facing stage 4 load shedding. The situation at the moment is no relief. It has impacted the economy big time. The current situation in South Africa with an outbreak of coronavirus makes it more difficult with Eskom load shedding. We all share the same sky; hence living in any part of the world doesn’t make us different from South Africa.
“The primary reason for load shedding is due to a failure in the system. Inadequate maintenance that got neglected for 12 years”, stated by Eskom chief operating officer, Jan Oberholzer. Hence load shedding is a measure initiated to prevent the total collapse of power systems countrywide. Eskom experts predict increasing supply and reducing the demand will benefit the current situation.
Eskom load shedding 2020 has a terrible impact on Business. Let’s go over some significantly affected business due to Eskom load shedding 2020.
Eskom load shedding impact on mines production:
According to the Minerals councils of South Africa, Mining production has been dreadfully affected due to load shedding. To meet high production demands, the sector undergoes high tariffs, which creates a burden on the economy. There are about 1000 mining production industries affected. About 40 % of mining industries are shut due to a 15% hike in tariff by Eskom – Chief economist: Mining council of SA, Henk Langenhoven clarifies the same. The gold sector was mainly affected. Over 53,500 jobs have been lost in the mining sector due to the hike. They suffered more loss of 18,000 jobs at the beginning of the electricity crisis and adverse load-shedding in the industry.
Impact on Advertising in media:
Advertising budgets have been reduced due to the overall economic fall because of the Eskom load shedding, and they are striving to survive somehow. Like any other part of the world, television is the most extensive media consumption channel in South Africa. Particularly the most effective way to reach out to the masses. However, there’s no rocket science to understand how bad the advertising and media industry is impacted by Eskom load shedding.
Whenever a client hires an advertising agency to sell their products or services, they aim at A. delivery of viewership and B. Reach to the masses. During the blackout, the client’s aim and concerns fail anyway as the medium “Television” is of no use with no power supply. In undergoing stage 2 and stage 4 load shedding, there is no power supply for hours that directly decreases the viewership. Reaching to masses seems impossible, Eskom also shared on its official twitter handle to be prepared for an unplanned breakdown that creates a more severe impact on the industry. Targeting an audience during the limited hours of viewership is difficult. The competition grows when the resources are limited.
This is a grave concern for advertisers and broadcasters. According to media consultant Britta, there is a huge number of audiences lost during stages 2 and 4, and the situation will get worse, not any better. Adding to this, she mentions the ways to deal with crises is challenging and tiresome. In the second place, clients’ concern with reaching an audience creates havoc on the schedule. Yes, clients are very much aware that the performance will be affected due to load shedding, but they aren’t pleased. It is a tough time for them as well after investing money, and they gain no quantity output. Nothing can we do about it.
Some may think digital platforms will come over to the rescue, but our beloved smartphones don’t have that amazing battery life. As a human outlook during such a crisis, we tend to save our smartphone’s battery for an emergency. Now that every day looks like a crisis, we naturally develop the habit of cutting down our digital presence and screen time. This also affects the brands who are trying to reach us! It seems like our Old school days of “RADIO” are back. I am sure this crisis for people from other parts of the world will feel Unreal living in 2020.
Impact on tourism:
Many tourist attractions are doubling their efforts to stay operational due to Eskom load shedding. “Closed due to Load shedding” is a board we see on top rather than “open.” Somehow these situations are narrowed down by using industry-sized generators, but is this a temporary solution or permanent? To build power plants, it takes years and years!
Hence the challenge is to survive on temporary solutions for how long? We all seek answers and try to discover ways to cut down the enormous money spending on such quick solutions.
With stage 4 of Eskom load shedding, the unplanned breakdown of power will cause difficulty in running the attractions seamlessly. In 2019 at the western cape, a sudden power cut caused 500 people disappointment, and they were stuck at table mountain for hours.
Know your area load shedding and plan accordingly. Eskom officially publishes links. To know the other schedule, please click here
- City of Johannesburg
- City of Ekurhuleni
- City of Tshwane
- City of Cape Town (PDF)
- Nelson Mandela Bay
- Buffalo City