South Africa’s introduction of renewable energy and the push for energy efficiency create a perfect opportunity to introduce Smart Grid technology, says Accenture South Africa’s executive director – Resources Lungile Mgingi.

One of Eskom future priorities is improving network reliability. The state-owned utility said that South Africa faces a backlog of electricity distribution maintenance and refurbishment estimated at $3.8bn.

Mgingi said that a Smart Grid was especially important for South Africa over the next few years before new generation capacity came online.

“This places strain on the network as the power load is juggled against growing demand. Smart Grid capability would allow utilities to better predict and respond to changes in supply and demand patterns, and more intelligently control the load across the network.”

Analysts Frost & Sullivan said that Smart Grid technology may also encourage a change in consumer behaviour and lead to the spread of electricity consumption throughout the day instead of the traditional early evening peak.

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