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ZESCO admits difficulties finding a balance to load-shedding


ZESCO Limited has admitted it was experiencing significant difficulties balancing the available power supply with demand due to the adverse effects of El Niño, which has caused power generation to drop to its lowest levels.

In a statement on Monday, the state utility revealed that low water levels in major reservoirs have drastically suppressed hydro power generation at key power stations.

“To supplement this reduced power generation, ZESCO is taking up 105 megawatts of power from Ndola Energy, importing up to 188 megawatts from Mozambique and has reduced power exports from 520 megawatts in February to 281 megawatts in June 2024,” said ZESCO.

However, the statement noted that the total available power of 1,268 megawatts still falls short of the demand of 2,216 megawatts in June 2024.

The company is prioritising critical loads to sustain industry, agriculture and essential services.

Read more: Just In: Industries, homes to be without light for 12 hours each day for the next 6 months — ZESCO

“Owing to the above, the Corporation has to deploy emergency load management measures to sustain the power system. This scenario entails that ZESCO will have to ration power outside the planned timings.”

According to ZESCO’s power tabulation, Kafue Gorge is generating 372 megawatts against a capacity of 990 megawatts, Kafue Gorge Lower is providing 179 megawatts against an installed capacity of 750 megawatts.

Kariba North Bank has dropped to a meager 98 megawatts against an installed capacity of 1,080 megawatts, Itezhi-Tezhi is generating 34 megawatts against an installed capacity of 120 megawatts.

ZESCO stated that Ndola Energy has added 105 megawatts with others generating a combined 480 megawatts.

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