South African electricity public utility / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Eskom Hld SOC Ltd or Eskom is a South African electricity public utility. It was established in 1923 as the Electricity Supply Commission (ESCOM) and was also known by its Afrikaans name Elektrisiteitsvoorsieningskommissie (EVKOM). Eskom represents South Africa in the Southern African Power Pool. The utility is the largest producer of electricity in Africa, and was among the top utilities in the world in terms of generation capacity and sales. It is the largest of South Africa's state owned enterprises. Eskom operates a number of notable power stations, including Matimba Power Station and Medupi Power Station in Lephalale, Kusile Power Station in Witbank, Kendal Power Station, and Koeberg Nuclear Power Station in the Western Cape Province, the only nuclear power plant in Africa.
The company is divided into Generation, Transmission and Distribution divisions, and together Eskom generates approximately 95% of electricity used in South Africa, amounting to ~45% used in Africa, and emits 42% of South Africa's total greenhouse gas emissions. By releasing 1.6 million tons of sulfur dioxide into the air in 2019, Eskom is also the largest emitter of sulfur dioxide in the power industry in the world. In 2019, it was announced that Eskom was to be split up into three distinct nationally owned entities due to huge debts and poor reliability of supply.
At the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference, a deal was announced for developed countries to fund South Africa's transition from coal power to renewable energy. However, employment in the mining sector threatens this transition.