Eskom - []

According to Unit 2 of the Ingula Pumped Storage Scheme came into commercial operation on Monday, says Eskom.

The pumped storage scheme, which is located on the border of the Free State and KwaZulu-Natal, is one of government’s flagship infrastructure projects.

Ingula’s Unit 4 was the first of the pumped storage scheme’s four units to come into commercial operation on 10 June 2016 – six months ahead of schedule.

“The two units have added 333MW each to the national grid and their commercial operation marks a key milestone towards the full commercial operation of the Ingula Pumped Storage Scheme,” said the power utility on Wednesday.

Ingula’s remaining two units – Units 1 and 3 – have been synchronised to the national grid and are on track for commercial operation within the first half of 2017.

Once completed, all four units of the Ingula Pumped Storage Scheme will produce a total of 1 332MW.

Repairs on Ingula’s Unit 3 are progressing well with the unit expected to come into commercial operation in January 2017 as scheduled. The unit was damaged earlier in the year during a test phase.

“Ingula will be Africa’s newest and largest pumped storage scheme and the 14th largest in the world upon completion.”

Last month, President Jacob Zuma launched Unit 4 of the plant. He said progress made at the plant was evidence of the country’s democratic legacy that supports economic growth and development.

“Ingula represents a legacy of a democratic South Africa, it supports economic growth and development of the country and ensures electricity supply and diversifies our energy mix,” he said at the time.

Eskom continues to execute its build programme that will bring much-needed power to support South Africa’s economic growth.

Since inception in 2005, the capacity expansion programme so far added 7 031MW of generation capacity, 6 048km of transmission lines and 31 590MVA of substation capacity.