Load shedding may continue till September

PM’s energy advisor says will recommend govt to shorten office hours, reduce use of AC
load shedding protests
Representational photo: Reuters

The government has no alternative other than load shedding to address the ongoing gas and electricity crisis at least till September, Energy Advisor to the Prime Minister Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury said today (July 7, 2022).

He said they will recommend the government to take some decisions to reduce use of electricity, including shortening office hours, not using air-conditioners below 25 degrees at offices, reducing the use of AC in religious establishments like mosques, and wrapping up social events like weddings by 7pm.

Earlier, a meeting was held at the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) with officials of the energy and power sector in this regard.

PM's energy advisor briefed journalists, saying that everyone should act responsibly and maintain austerity to reduce the use of electricity.

"Rich and poor – this crisis can be overcome with the collective effort of all," he said. He compared the ongoing situation with a "state of war".

He said, government officials may go for "home office" for a day or two every week.

The Prime Minister's energy advisor said that power demands till September could be 14,500 MW during peak hours, but through the aforementioned efforts, the demands can be brought down to 12,500 MW. Then load shedding won't have to be applied too much.

However, he did not respond to a question on the duration of load shedding in each area across the country. He said, "We now have a shortage of 500 MW, the shortage will be tackled by reducing demand."

"We are in a much better position than many developed countries," he added.

He said, after September, some coal-based power plants will be connected to the national grid which could bring relief.