A Guide to Creating a Loadshedding-free Office
The decline in power availability over the previous year has been dramatic, with an average of 79% over the past 12 months. This places the country in constant stage 3 load shedding.
This year has already surpassed the combined total of days with a stage 5 or above in 2022 and 2023. Yes, the situation is that awful. The central bank predicts that the disruptions, which first appeared in 2008, will cut GDP growth by 2% this year.
The inability to keep regular business hours, a rise in downtime, and negative consequences on relationships with customers are only some of the problems brought by the frequent power outages. It has been challenging for enterprises to make long-term plans and strategic decisions because of the need for a more consistent electrical supply.
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However, there are a variety of measures that small and large businesses can take to lessen the blow of blackouts. Business owners can do a variety of things to reduce the impact of blackouts. Get your loadshedding-free office with this guide.
Invest in appropriate equipment
- Uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems ensure a clean shutdown of electronics and computers in the event of a temporary power outage.
- Power outages can be extremely inconvenient, but backup generators like diesel or gas generators can keep the lights on even if the grid is out for days.
- In sunny places like South Africa, grid-connected photovoltaic (PV) solar systems can be a cost-effective way to meet electricity needs thanks to the use of solar modules. It may be necessary to deploy supplementary hardware and backup power solutions for grid-tied systems to continue operating during load shedding.
- Off-grid solar PV systems are self-sufficient power plants that rely on solar photovoltaic (PV) modules and battery storage to generate electricity. The persistent load shedding situation has led to a rise in the popularity of off-grid solutions in metropolitan areas, despite their obvious use in more isolated or rural locales.
- An inverter converts direct current (DC) to alternating current (AC). In order to transmit power across great distances, it boosts the voltage, and then drops it back down to a usable level once it reaches its destination.
Tax Breaks for Renewable Energy
To aid businesses in adapting to load shedding and contributing to South Africa’s renewable energy transition, the government has implemented a tax relief programme worth R9 billion. In his 2023 budget statement, South Africa’s Minister of Finance Enoch Godongwana promised businesses a boost of R5 billion from a new renewable energy incentive.
There are no longer any limits on the annual generation capacity of renewable energy installations that can qualify for this enlarged incentive, allowing firms to deduct 125% in the first year. This deduction can significantly lower a company’s corporate income tax liability in the first year of operation for investments put into use between March 1, 2023 and February 28, 2025, making it easier for businesses to put money into clean energy solutions.
More Practical Tips
- Keep yourself well-informed. Load shedding stages and times vary by location, therefore it’s important to be aware of both. The last thing you need is to be caught off guard.
- Data loss is preventable. You may find yourself in a position where the document you were working on or unsaved records simply vanish when load shedding begins and your connection drops or your device shuts down. Instead of putting yourself through that hassle, make backing up your data a regular habit.
- Pull plugs from electrical outlets. Assuming the lights come back on after the dreaded blackout, a power surge may disrupt the normally stable voltage supply and do permanent damage to any electrical devices you have plugged in.
- Prepare in advance to keep your productivity high. If possible, schedule your day such that you don’t encounter any load shedding. Use the time when the power is out to get things done that don’t require electricity. Perhaps it’s time for a spring cleaning? Or maybe you need to do some sorting. You may use this time to learn new skills.
- Establish a contingency fund to cover unexpected costs. You can save your company a lot of trouble by setting aside money in case of an unexpected power outage. Using a generator as a backup power source, for instance, will necessitate the purchase of gasoline. You’ll need to set aside more money than usual for electricity costs because of this.
- Talk to your clientele. Email and text message marketing are only two of the many options for getting in touch with customers. Make it clear that your company is prepared for loadshedding and can handle any problems that may arise. This reassures customers that you will continue business as usual during power outages.
- Make use of tools that can be recharged. From small LED lights to powerful electric air compressors, the market is stocked with rechargeable tools for any roadside emergency. Invest in a portable battery to ensure your tools can be recharged anywhere, anytime.what is an inbverter