By Mohamed Adel and Mohamed Farag
Various areas have witnessed power outages over the last few days, despite the 1,200 MW surplus in electricity production, and the pumping of approximately 133m cubic metres of gas and oil equivalent daily by the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS) for the upcoming period due to the rise in temperature.
A senior EGAS official said in a statement to Daily News Egypt that a maximum of approximately 97m cubic metres of gas will be pumped daily. This will be in addition to 27,000 tonnes of mazut, and 4,000 tonnes of diesel to power stations.
He said that if power stations’ consumption of fuel increases, they will not be able to provide additional quantities of natural gas, and they will be compensated by mazut shipments.
According to the official, the quantities requested by the Ministry of Electricity in its plan amount to 143m cubic metres of gas and oil equivalent. However, stations have not yet received these quantities.
Meanwhile, a Ministry of Electricity source said power outages have significantly decreased, and the production deficit has therefore declined. The outages, which took place in Greater Cairo, Daqahleya, Alexandria, and Port Said on Monday, were a result of failures in the main feeding stations and connector cables, as well as renovations conducted by the power distribution companies.
First Undersecretary of the Ministry of Electricity Mohamed El-Yamani said the National Energy Control Center did not ease the pressure off stations, nor did it see any outages, except for in the North Delta Electricity Distribution Co, due to a forced failure.
El-Yamani added that the power loads on the national grid reached 27,600 MW, while production rates have met and surpassed the rates of consumption. As such, the centre has not eased pressure off stations in the past period.
The Ministry of Electricity is working according to a clear strategy and timeline to implement projects to provide electricity to everyone, as part of the urgent government
plan. An additional 570 MW will be added to the grid within a few days, through the linking of a 160 MW power unit to the Ataqa power plant, and the Mahmoudia power plant with the same capacity, as well as two other units from the West Damietta power plant with a capacity of 250 MW.
The EGAS official said Egypt’s total gas production is approximately 4.3bn cubic feet, in addition to receiving approximately 500m cubic feet of gas daily from the imported gas shipments.