PM meets with ministers of electricity and petroleum to end power cuts problem

Cabinet sources said Prime Minister Ibrahim Mehleb is meeting on Sunday evening with the ministers of electricity and petroleum to discuss ways of ending the power cuts problem and appease public anger.
The Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy Mohamed Shaker issued a statement earlier, calling for rationalizing consumption otherwise the crisis will aggravate in summer. He expects the months of July and August to be the most difficult due to the hot weather and increased use of air conditioning.
Cabinet has approved coal as an alternative power source for a solution, but athough coal is one of the cheapest methods of producing electricity, it is also the most polluting.
"I feel that we are very late in taking real serious steps to use renewable energy, whether solar or wind‏ power," Shaker said in his statement.
Shaker told CBC Channel last Wednesday that power outages could be extended from two and a half hours to six hours a day due to fuel shortage.
The Ministry of Electricity aims to rationalize at least 2,000 MW in the coming period equal to 7 percent of the total electricity consumption, Shaker said, pointing out that power outages tend to take place in the peak hours of the evening.
Shaker explained that the power outages are caused by two factors: the first is that some power plants are out of service due to maintenance before the summer season, and the second is the fuel shortage.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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