Africa Centre for Energy Policy’s Head of Policy Unit, Dr Ismeal Ackah says for the past two months the ECG has been shedding on average 240 megawatts daily, and have not received gas from Nigeria for about a month now.
The Centre has called on the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) and the Load Management Committee to immediately publish a load shedding timetable to help Ghanaians plan their lives.
A lot of Ghanaians now experience power cuts lasting for not less than 12 hours for at least once in every two days.
There are many other areas where consumers endure power cut for over 36 hours.
He explained that according to Legislative Instrument (LI) 1935, section 4, a supplier of electricity shall ensure that cumulative electricity interruption for each customer within an operational year does not exceed 48 hours for metropolitan and municipal areas, 72 hours for a district capital, as well as 148 hours in rural areas.
He added that section 6 of the LI indicates that where a supplier fails to give notice of a planned interruption of supply, the supplier has committed an offence and is liable to pay an amount into the energy fund.
Dr Ackah appealed to the Power Ministry to find money to buy fuel for thermal plants.
He particularly called on government to pay N-Gas as quickly as possible, especially because Ghanaians have been paying energy debt recovery levy since December 2015.
“We have been through this dumsor for more than four months, and we believe consumers deserve some respect”, he added.
He explained that the law says if it is planned outage, consumers must be given notice, and since the gas issue is known, ECG cannot pretend that it is an emergency.
Govt in self-denial
Government’s refusal to admit that there is a load shedding going on and provide a timetable for it continues to disrupt the lives of many Ghanaians who continue to experience consistent power cuts – Dumsor.
Last week, Deputy Minister of Power, John Jinapor told Ghanaians that the power outages do not constitute dumsor to require a timetable.
Ghana Grid Company (GRIDCo) shed 250 megawatts on Saturday while off-peak load shedding yesterday was 260MW.
Off-Peak for yesterday
Off-peak scheduled capacity for yesterday was 1,362MW while forecast off-peak demand was 1,631MW.
150MW import from Cote d’Ivoire
Consequently, 150MW imported from Cote d’Ivoire reduced load shedding to 260MW.
Akosombo water level 235.44 feet
Water level in the Akosombo Hydro Dam is decreasing by 0.03 feet a day, and as of yesterday, the water level was 235.44 feet.
150MW TICO plant faulty
Currently, one unit of Takoradi International Company’s (TICO) thermal power plant is faulty, which has resulted in the loss of 150MW.
N-Gas shut down
Gas flow from Nigeria has been cut off because the state power producer, VRA, owes Nigeria’s N-Gas around $180 million while N-Gas, in turn, owes the West Africa Gas Pipeline Company (WAPCo) $104 million.
The suspension has exacerbated power supply problems given the low water levels at the main hydro plants.
Asogli & Siemens Power Plant shut down
Consequently, Sunon Asogli Power Plant and Siemens are not operating because of lack of gas from Nigeria.
Ghana Gas flow to Aboadze 57.35 mmscf
Ghana Gas flow rate to Aboadze power enclave was 57.35 million standard cubic feet of gas (mmscf) per day as of yesterday.
Technical problems at the Jubilee field also led Tullow to cut its oil production guidance for 2016, as previously expected, by around 12,000 bpd to 62-68,000 barrels per day.
This means gas from the fields for power generation has also dropped significantly.
Government will have to import more crude oil to fire thermal plants in the Aboadze enclave.
Inadequate crude for Cenit and Kpone thermal plants
Independent Power Producer (IPP) Cenit Energy power plant and Kpone thermal plants are operating at 55% of their capacity because of inadequate crude and diesel respectively.
VRA’s power generation problems are a sign of the budgetary stress facing Ghana, a country that is following an International Monetary Fund programme to restore fiscal balance.