Expect longer blackouts until June 20, YESC says

Members of the public are expressing anger with the Yangon Electricity Supply Corporation (YESC) for announcing longer power cuts in the city.

The YESC said in a statement on Wednesday that it will lengthen the duration of daily power cuts from two hours to six hours in every township in four districts. The longer blackouts were to take effect Wednesday.

Yangon residents interviewed by The Myanmar Times said they were disappointed with the power company’s announcement as they are already experiencing frequent power outages even outside the timetable the YESC had in place.

“The power company told us just three days ago that they would cut power only for two hours once every couple of days. Now they are saying the outages will be even longer. I am really upset because I have so many orders for clothes to finish this week,” Ma Myat Yadanar, a designer and owner of a tailor shop in Mayangone township.

According to the YESC statement, the longer blackouts will be in effect until June 20.

The YESC introduced a rotation system of electricity cut-offs starting at the end of April to deal with the increased power consumption during the hot season.

Under the plan, townships were placed in five groups and power was cut on a rotational basis two or three times a day for every group, with the blackouts lasting two hours at a time.

“They said there was insufficient water in some dams to generate more power. I don’t understand the lack of water at the dams because the rainy season is already here,” said Ma Phyu Zin Khaing, a resident of North Dagon township.

Despite the monsoon season having already started in Myanmar, hydroelectric plants in upper Myanmar still have low water levels, a YESC official said.

“The Yeywar, Paunglaung, upper Paunglaung, and Thaukyekhet (2) hydroelectric plants still have low levels,” the official said.

Early this month, Deputy Minister of Electricity and Energy Dr Tun Naing, said that six hydroelectric power plants had stopped generating power because there was no water in their dams.

A few months ago, the ministry had high hopes that new hydroelectric power plants would provide more electricity to the country, but shortages continue.

This year, the ministry launched a 118 megawatt power plant in Thaton Township, a 145MW power plant in Kyaukse Township, and a 90MW power plant in Myingyan Township.

Moreover, the ministry said that the government is planning to upgrade five hydroelectric plants in Bago, Magwe, Mandalay, and Sagaing regions.

Power consumption in Yangon Region is around 1500MW per day, according to the YESC.

Source: Myanmar Times

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