Frequently Asked Questions

  • The Power Heroes programme is one of the measures that the City is taking to protect its customers from load-shedding while we work on getting additional generation onto the grid.
  • As part of our demand response plan, our target is a total of 60MW in demand reduction, which means that we can avoid one stage of load-shedding in winter, and 1.5 stages in summer.
  • Switching off non-essential loads when the electrical network is constrained is one of the most effective ways to mitigate load-shedding.
  • Customers who participate in the Power Heroes programme will have smart devices installed in their homes that can remotely switch on and off non-essential loads like geysers to protect City-supplied areas from some of the impacts of load-shedding.
  • The programme is implemented and managed by a third-party aggregator who is responsible for recruiting customers, installing devices and managing load reduction when needed by the City.
  • The programme will be rolled out in 3 phases. All of these will be voluntary are envisage as follows :
    • Phase 1 – this will target all customers in the City of Cape Town supply areas to voluntarily and manually switch of load so that the City and its residents can avert load shedding its current form. An app will be used to send customers a signal to voluntarily switch off their load and all customers will be able to track the load reduction against the target to avoid load shedding
    • Phase 2 – this will be focussed on larger energy users in the commercial sector and will involve a voluntary sign up to have smart switching devices installed so that the load reduction is automatic and by prior arrangement
    • Phase 3 – this will be focussed on larger energy users in the residential sector and will involve a voluntary sign up to have smart switching devices installed so that the load reduction is automatic and by prior arrangement.
  • The City has awarded the tender to the Ontec Karebo JV as the third-party aggregator who will manage the program on the customer’s side.

  • Participation is voluntary and subject to a prequalification criterion – we are targeting larger energy users that have non-essential loads that can be switched off.
  • We have limited smart load limiting devices and want to ensure that we get optimal load that can be reduced for customers that participate in the programme.
  • There will be a voluntary load management programme that will rely on customers switching off when they receive a signal to do so – details will be provided soon.
  • Customers can register their interest in the programme on capetownpowerheroes.co.za
  • If a customer wants to join, they will sign a contractual agreement with The Ontec Karebo JV, outlining the participation arrangements. The City will not be involved in this agreement, or involved in the benefits that customers get through this participation.
  • The Ontec Karebo JV will install smart devices on non-essential loads, agreed to by the customer. These are typically electricity-intensive items such as geysers, pool pumps and airconditioners.
  • When the City is required by Eskom to move to a higher stage of load-shedding, we will implement the required load reduction from the City’s Network Control Center
  • The biggest incentive for customers to participate in the Power Heroes initiative is the ability of the City to eventually protect residents from the effects of one stage of loadshedding or possibly more, once enough customers have signed up.
  • Residents and small commercial customers within the City of Cape Town’s supply area are eligible to participate in the Programme.
  • The aggregator needs to reach around customers in order for us to meet our target of 60MW in demand reduction through the automated action.
  • The intention is to get as many residents and businesses to participate in phase 1 so that the City gets the benefits as quickly as possible and there is no limit in customers that can participate – the more customers that participate the lower the load per customer is needed for the City to reach its target of avoiding rolling blackouts per load shedding block.
  • Residents in Eskom supply areas and City-supplied large commercial and industrial customers will not be able to participate. Please visit www. capetownpowerheroes.co.za to check if you pre-qualify.
  • If you are a resident or small commercial customer, you can join the Power Heroes Programme and be part of the City’s efforts to end load-shedding over time.
  • Look out for communication from The Ontec Karebo JV – the service provider that is responsible for signing up customers and for managing these load reductions on behalf of the City.
  • Remember: this is a voluntary programme – you can choose whether or not you would like to join. Your participation will help the City avoid the devastating effects of load shedding on our economy and does not cost you anything.
  • Visit www.capetown.gov.za/powerheroes website for more information and to register your interest in being a Power Hero

The Power Heroes program will run for at least seven years, starting from 2024. The City will assess the suitability of either expanding the reach, and/or extending the duration of the programme depending on its success and benefits.

The Power Heroes program will be focused on residential and small commercial customers within City supplied areas. All LV customers with a maximum demand of less than 1MVA will be encouraged to participate in this important programme.