Energy minister warns of summer power outages

Uri Landau said that during the upcoming summer, the country's electricity production reserves will fall to only 2-3%.

Minister of Energy and Water Resources Uzi Landau has launched an extensive publicity campaign to conserve electricity. "Israel is facing a serious danger of electricity shortages this summer," Landau said today at a press conference to launch the campaign.

Landau said that during the upcoming summer, the country's electricity production reserves will fall to only 2-3%. "There is a great danger that the electricity grid will fail if there is any type of breakdown at the power station, especially during peak usage hours," Landau said.

Landau added, "Unfortunately, irresponsible decisions taken by entities outside of the Israeli energy industry for years delayed the commencement of operation of the Ashkelon (D) power station, which alone could have prevented the current situation. These same irresponsible decisions also prevented the nearer and quick connection of the Tamar natural gas reserve to the pipeline in northern Israel, which could have already been operating today, but instead caused a delay as the connection was rerouted at high cost - to southern Israel.

Landau also referred to the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources' plans to fight the expected electricity shortfalls. As "Globes" reported yesterday, the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources plans to import 25 megawatt mobile generators (by truck and boat) to be used by the country during peak usage, as well as to provide backup and provide a safety net for the energy industry in an emergency.

In addition, the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources is considering measures for energy lending arrangements for 200-250 megawatts of electricity, as well as examining tariffs to encourage conservation, and additional steps taken by the intra-ministerial office headed by the Electricity Authority chief to deal with the electricity shortage expected this summer.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on February 15, 2012

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2012

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