Planned power outages will continue until the weather cools down, the Ministry of Energy announced. Each degree rise in the temperature leads to 1500 MW increase in consumption, said Deputy Minister of Energy, Homayun Haeri. In previous decades, peak consumption hours were during the night, yet with the rise in temperature, peak hours have shifted to daytime due to the energy usage of air conditioners.
Shargh newspaper claimed that the electricity industry of Iran is bankrupt and the Ministry of Energy owes the largest debt within the government. Fixing the price of electricity has led investors to avoid this sector. Sanctions have limited foreign investment and the Ministry of Energy lacks the finances to open new power plants.
During summer months, the Ministry of Energy purchases all of the electricity produced by private power plants. However in the months of winter, private power plants cannot find customers for their produced electricity. The Ministry had promised to add 3 thousand MW to the power grid via new power plants last year, yet they only succeeded in adding 1900 MW.
“A portion of our electricity came from hydro-electric plants. However, due to droughts we have lost 5000 MW of production capacity. If the droughts continue and we lose access to hydro-electric power, we need to produce an additional 4000 MW of power annually”, Mr. Haeri said.