General News of Tue, 5 May 201588
'Dumsor' to ease by Friday
Reports reaching The aL-hAJJ indicate that barring any last minute glitch, there will be great improvement in the ongoing load shedding exercise by Friday, May 08, 2015 following the resumption of operations at the multimillion Gas processing Plant at Atuabo in the Western region and the coming on stream of plants undergoing maintenance.
The Gas Processing Plant, which was shutdown on April 20 this year for its first mandatory maintenance work, according to managers at the plant, has resumed full commercial operations.
The brief shutdown of the plant, among other factors, worsened the debilitating power crisis which has greatly affected business and also brought untold hardship to Ghanaians.
This frustrating development has in recent times resulted in mounting pressure on the Mahama government to end the load management exercise, known in the local parlance as dumsor-dumsor.
But sources at the nation’s largest power producer, Volta River Authority, have told The aL-hAJJ that the VRA has started receiving gas from the Atuabo Gas plant through the Aboadze thermal enclave to power its machines.
The VRA is said to have switched all five of its units to gas to replace light crude, which will generate about 500 megawatts to minimize the power outages.
The state owned Daily Graphic reported yesterday that the Atuabo Gas Plant has started producing 54 million standard cubic feet of gas, 370 metric cubes of Liquefied Petroleum Gas a day and 100 metric cubes of condensates for power generation.
As a result of this new development in the power sector, a source at VRA, who does not want his name mentioned said, “the coming days will see significant improvement in power supply. I can tell you that by Friday, Ghanaians will heave a sigh of relief. The power cuts will not be severe as it has been in recent times.”
Adding to this positive developments, our source noted, "one of the gas turbines which went out of service in the absence of Ghana Gas flow has been synchronized to come on stream today (Monday) to run on gas from Atuabo. It will reduce the deficit by 110MW. A second unit at the TICO end is being prepared to come on stream by weekend with another 110MW. Few days from now the steam component of TICO is also to come up with 100MW. All things being equal, we are expected to see significant, if not drastic, reduction in the load shedding deficit by next week".
Meanwhile, the Turkish company working on the power barges has reaffirmed its commitment to deliver the barges ahead of schedule.
Karpowership and Electricity Company of Ghana in June last year signed a Power Purchased Agreement for the provision of 450MW of electric power through the supply of two 225 MW powerships.
As part of its commitment to help bridge the gap between the country’s electricity supply vis-a-vis demand, managers of Karpowership are negotiating with ECG to bring down immediately a 120MW power ship before the completion of the 450MW plants in August and September.
In a related development, energy expert and former Chief Executive of VRA, Charles Yves Wereko Brobbey has predicted that dumsor could end in July when maintenance works on important power installations are complete.
However, he said, the problem could resurface if government does not settle a $30 million debt VRA owes Nigeria.