Power Sector News And Other Related Stories For Monday 8th August 2022
Electricity Generation Rises 7.6% to 4,089mw, As Inadequate Facilities Hinder Distribution
ELECTRICITY generation, weekend, rose by 7.6 per cent to 4,089 megawatts, MW, from 3,800MW, according to data obtained from Nigeria Electricity System Operator, an autonomous unit under the Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN.
Checks by Vanguard showed that the improvement was due to a combination of factors, including additional inputs from hydro stations because of heavy rainfall.
But this did not translate to increased power supply to consumers, including households and companies nationwide, as the Electricity Distribution Companies, DisCos, have limited infrastructure, such as transformers, prepaid meters and distribution lines, to deliver adequate electricity to consumers.
Consequently, the checks showed that many consumers still live in darkness or generate their independent power at higher cost, due to the higher prices of petrol and diesel, currently priced at N170 and N800 per litre respectively.
In Last 12 Years, Nigeria’s Electricity Grid Suffered Over 222 Partial, Total Collapses
In the last twelve and a half years, spanning the period from 2010 to the first half of 2022, Nigeria’s power grid suffered at least 222 partial and total collapses, a THISDAY analysis of industry data, mostly from the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), has shown.
To reduce the rate of grid failures, Minister of Power Abubakar Aliyu said the federal government would fast-track the purchase and installation of a Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system.
However, a study jointly published in March by Nnaemeka Emodi of the University of Queensland and Ogheneruona Diemuodeke of the University of Port Harcourt, estimated that in Sub-Saharan Africa, every one per cent increase in power outages (in terms of hours) had been associated with a 2.86 per cent decrease in Gross Domestic Product (GDP). “This translates to a loss of about $28 billion in GDP,” according to the academics.
While information relating to the crashes was not officially available from September 2021 to June 2022, a 12-year-nine-month review of NERC data, covering 2010 to September 2021, showed that 216 crash incidents happened during the period.
Top Government Agency Blasts DISCOS for Disconnecting Consumers’ Electricity, Gives Reasons
The Federal Government has described as illegal, the flippant disconnection of consumers’ electricity by the distribution companies across the country without prior notice to users. Speaking at an electricity consumer complaint resolution platform in Calabar on Wednesday, the vice chairman of the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC), Babatunde Irukera said disconnecting a consumer from the source of power supply without a 10-day prior notice from the date of bill delivery is unacceptable.
Citing the illegalities perpetrated by the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company (PHED) in Calabar and its environs, Irukera noted that the company has not done well in service delivery to the people.
The Guardian reports that while adding that PHEDC has been oppressive to electricity consumers, Irukerea bemoaned the company’s inability to provide services commensurate with bills to users.
Irukera also warned that reports received by the commission show that mass disconnection of electricity is carried out by the PHEDC without recourse to the law.
KEDCO Workers Issue 14-Day Strike Notice
Electricity workers under the auspices of National Union of Electricity Employees, NUEE have issued a 14-day strike notice to the management of Kano Electricity Distribution Company, KEDCO, over unremitted deducted pension their Pension Fund Administrators, PFAs, among others.
The workers threatened to cripple the operations of the distribution company should the management fail to do the right thing.
Solacebase reports that in a petition to the Managing Director\Chief Executive Officer, and copied the Director-General, Directorate of State Service, DSS, General Secretary of NUEE, Joe Ajaero, decried management’s persistent refusal to remit third party deductions and its flagrant disregard for agreements reached with the union on this and other outstanding Labour issues.
Recalls that the committee constituted to establish the outstanding payment owed staff in KEDCO which recommended payment plan within four months, submitted its report via a document dated 21st January, 2022, saying: “At a meeting held on 30th March, 2022 between the Union and KEDCO management over delay in implementing the report of the committee highlighted above alongside promotion related- issues, management made a promise to commence payment without delay.
Sensitising Electricity Consumers on Their Rights and Obligation as Customers
It is no more news that penultimate week that the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and the National Orientation Agency (NOA) signed a pact towards the sensitisation of electricity consumers nationwide.
Engr. Sanusi Garba, the Chairman of NERC at the event that formalised the Pact, said the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) requires more sensitisation and that Nigerians need knowledge on how they get electricity, and noted that the NOA platform is for educating Nigerians on electricity theft, safety and other issues.
Engr. Garba, who was represented by the Commissioner, Legal, Licensing and Compliance, NERC, Dafe Akpeneye, said: “We have a very large country with a population of 200 million people across 774 Local Government Areas and we are just one agency.”
Dr. Garba Abari, the Director General of NOA, said in spite of efforts the government has put in place to address electricity gaps, there are still issues and that citizens need to be educated on these efforts.
FG Directs NASENI On Mass Production of Solar Cells to Boost Power Supply
The Federal Government has directed the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI) to commence the mass production of solar cells to boost the alternative power sources in the country. Chief Executive Officer of NASENI, Prof. Mohammed Haruna, made this known to State House correspondents after briefing President Muhammadu Buhari on the activities of the Agency on Friday in Abuja.
The president also directed the implementation of a modular irrigation project and the production of more farm implements, to boost agricultural activities.
He said: “The President is impressed that NASENI is delivering on its mandate. I gave him the usual quarterly briefing, and he is happy with what we have done this quarter. Therefore, he has directed us to do more, particularly in the modular irrigation project that we are commencing from Adamawa State, the solar cells production and also agricultural implements.”
UAE Masdar to Develop 2GW RE Projects in Tanzania
The Emirati renewable energy firm Masdar has announced plans to construct two renewable energy projects in Tanzania. This announcement follows the recent deal signed between Masdar and the Tanzania Electric Supply Company (Tanesco) during the just concluded Tanzania Energy Congress (TEC) held in Dar es Salaam.
The deal comprises the generation of 2100MW capacity produced by the Julius Nyerere Hydro Power Project (JNHPP) and larger than the combined existing electricity generation from gas, hydro and other renewables.
In a statement issued by Masdar, the joint venture with Tanesco has an initial target to develop a capacity of about 600MW, beginning with solar photovoltaic (PV) and later onshore wind.
“The joint venture will work on two energy projects that will ultimately generate 2GW of solar and onshore wind power,” Masdar communicated in a press release.
Meghalaya: MeECL Employees to Protest Electricity Amendment Bill
Employees of the Meghalaya Energy Corporation Limited (MeECL) will take part in the nation-wide protest by power engineers and employees against the Electricity Amendment Bill, 2022, which will be introduced in the Lok Sabha on Monday.
The BJP-led central government is slated to table the Electricity Amendment Bill in The Parliament on Monday.
The new bill aims at the entry of private companies into the electricity distribution sector, which is one of the main reasons power employees and engineers are holding nationwide protests.
The new Electricity Bill also seeks to enable power consumers to choose from multiple service providers as in the case with telecom services.
The MeECL employees under the banner of Coordination Committee of Registered MeECL Association and Unions (CCORMAU) are of the view that the Electricity Amendment Bill would have far-reaching adverse effects on the power sector, electricity consumers and electricity employees and engineers.
Energy Bills: Charities Warn People Against Not Paying
People are being warned of the consequences of not paying their energy bills, as a campaign to refuse payment gathers supporters.
The Don’t Pay group, which is demanding a reduction of bills to an affordable level, says more than 80,000 people have pledged to cancel their direct debit payments from 1 October.
This is the date the price cap – the maximum amount suppliers can charge customers in England, Scotland and Wales for each unit of energy – increases.
Analysts are forecasting the typical customer is likely to pay £3,358 a year from October, up from £1,971 a year in April.
Don’t Pay says millions of people won’t be able to afford their energy bills this winter – and that its campaign is the only way to force the government and energy companies to take action.
The group also says it won’t take any action unless one million people sign up and it is “consulting extensively” with legal and personal debt experts.
UK Power Outage: Thousands of Homes Without Electricity as Blackout Hits SEVEN Regions
THOUSANDS of homes across Essex, Suffolk, Surrey, Greater London, East Sussex, Norfolk and Kent have been hit with blackouts, leaving households across the regions without power as the energy crisis continues to unfold.
Much of the power cuts taking effect across the South East appear to have been unplanned, with UK Power Network’s website citing faults which occurred on underground electricity cables affecting several local areas. Up to 514 households were affected by power cuts in Essex, including in the town of Chelmsford, which reportedly had its power restored at 7:38am.
Hundreds of households were affected in Surrey too, also reportedly due to a cable fault on a high voltage network, sparking an area-wide power cut.
In one Surrey area, the village of Mayford, up to 459 customers were reportedly affected across 16 postcodes, as indicated on UK Power Network’s Power Cut map.