DST hardly improves power situation | The Daily Star
11:00 PM, June 26, 2009 / LAST MODIFIED: 11:00 PM, June 26, 2009

DST hardly improves power situation

People reluctant to change lifestyle; many public, private institutions not following daylight saving time

The government's daylight saving time (DST) formula to save electricity is yet to have the desired effect in improving power situation even after seven days of its introduction, as people have not changed their lifestyle while offices and business establishments are not following the directive properly.
However, the city dwellers alleged that the power situation has not changed even after introduction of the DST. Load-shedding and power outages remain the same and in some cases they are facing tremendous sufferings due to frequent load shedding, they added.
Against this backdrop, the authorities concerned said there is a misconception among the people about the DST as the measure is just managing the load of power during the peak hours of power consumption.
Clarifying the situation, they said consumption of electricity at houses, offices, markets and other establishments has been increased for the last several days due to excessive heat while production of power remained low for the shortfall in gas pressure, causing the load shedding.
They also said there is no possibility of getting respite from the load shedding and power outages immediately but hoped that the situation would improve after sufficient rainfalls.
Shop owners in many areas in the city reportedly keep open their shops after 8:00pm as they said that many of them are not following the government's directives.
Residents from the city's different areas said they are still experiencing power cuts four to five times a day, each lasting at least an hour.
"Despite closing our shop as per the government directives, I don't find any good result of DST as the load shedding remains the same in daytime," said Abdul Hamid, a salesman of a shop in Farmgate.
Officials of Power Development Board said load shedding stood at around 312MW yesterday.
About 4,034MW of power was generated in the country yesterday against a demand of around 4,400MW. Power generation was 3,670MW on Thursday.
The PDB officials termed yesterday's power generation "quite good" as the demand decreased because of rain.
They said about 230MW of power is not being generated in Raozan Power Plant because of decreasing gas pressure. It has the capacity to generate 360MW of power.
On the other hand, power generation at Kaptai power plant fell significantly for lack of water while only one unit of Shikalbaha plant is generating 40MW power, they said. They feared suspension of electricity production anytime if it does not rain sufficiently within a few days.
The heat wave that swept through the country for the last few weeks raised the demand for power but the generation remained stuck, said PDB officials.
"Apart from the heat that is leading to the increase in demand, the capacity and performances of the power plants, lines, transformers and generators usually decrease during the summer season," said a source at PDB, adding that the low gas pressure in the power plants also creates problems in power generation.
In fact, power is not being saved by the DST formula as the saved power is being consumed by those who earlier used to get less power, he said, adding that saving electricity through DST measure is not visible largely since there is a huge gap between power generation and demand.
Power Secretary Abul Kalam Azad said there will be no change in load shedding in daytime by the DST rather it would help reduce the load shedding during peak hours.
Many shops and malls are not following the government's decision properly, he said adding, "There will be some positive effect if everyone follows it." It means the load shedding that remains for five hours will be reduced to four or four and half hours now, he said.
He also said people have some misconceptions about the DST as they are thinking that the power situation will increase drastically, but the fact is that the power save will be consumed elsewhere.
Asked about the load shedding, he said the situation would improve after sufficient rainfalls. Most of the power units are old and some even cannot produce power while they cannot carry out regular maintenance work for the units.
The secretary said the government would let the people know about its plan within 15 days. He said they are expecting to have 100-150MW more power generated in July while another 400MW power in December this year.

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