27 Jan 2023 12:26

Situation in Ukraine's energy system stabilized, problems persist in Odessa region - Ukrenergo CEO

MOSCOW. Jan 27 (Interfax) - The situation in Ukraine's energy system has been stabilized quite rapidly and power generation has almost been restored to the level that was before Thursday, Ukrenergo power grid operator CEO Vladimir Kudritsky said.

"We have stabilized the situation in the energy system. Problems persist in the Odessa region. Critical infrastructure there is receiving electricity. We and the local grid operators are starting to restore power supplies to consumers. The situation has been stabilized in other regions, even though Ukrenergo facilities were damaged," Ukrainian media quoted Kudritsky as saying during the national telethon on Thursday evening.

Whereas the biggest problem across Ukraine is now the shortage of power generation, the major issue in the Odessa region is the state of the grid, because substations were damaged, he said.

Almost the entire amount of electricity generation recorded before Thursday was restored as of Thursday evening, he said.

Generally, the regions are not exceeding the power consumption limits, and, hopefully, they will not do so in the future, otherwise Ukrenergo will have to resort to emergency power outages, Kudritsky said.

"The deficit is considerable at the moment. Electrical stations were damaged and some of them have not resumed operations. That is why, there are power shortages during the day, especially during evening and morning peak hours," he said.

The electricity being imported by DTEK and other companies in January helps cope with power system loads, Kudritsky said. However, it is only one of the instruments that can partly compensate for the generation shortage, but cannot substitute for it completely, he added.

DTEK executive director Dmitry Sakharuk, in turn, said that nearly 75% of Ukraine's thermal generation needs to be restored.

"We need to restore nearly 7.5 GW of thermal generation, which is almost 75% of its entire capacity. These are large amounts that should be returned to the grid as soon as possible," Ukrainian media quoted Sakharuk as saying during the national telethon.

Any assistance from Ukraine's international partners is vital, he said, adding that 10%-15% of what is needed has been received so far.

As reported, hourly schedules have already been reinstated in Kiev and the Kiev and Dnepropetrovsk following the damage inflicted on Thursday, DTEK said. The Odessa region, however, may have to encounter emergency power outages for several days more.

Ukrenergo raised the daytime power consumption limits by 0.5% and the nighttime limits by 2.3% for January 27, several distribution system operators said.

These data suggest that Ukrenergo has been keeping the limits at approximately the same level with an upward tendency for the fourth consecutive day, Ukrainian media said.

DTEK said on social media that the limits introduced in Kiev and the Kiev and Dnepropetrovsk regions make it possible to expect that they will stick to the hourly schedules on Friday, whereas emergency power outages will be used in the Odessa region. Before Thursday, emergency blackouts had been introduced in the Odessa region only at night.

Distribution system operators, however, have warned that, due to the current situation in the energy system, they may have to resort to emergency power outages at any moment.