3 power generating giants allay fear of April power blackout


BANGKOK, Mar 6 – Thailand’s three core electricity generating agencies have given assurances that the country will be spared from power blackouts during the maintenance of a natural gas platform in Myanmar during April 5-14.

The Yanada platform in the neighbouring country supplies natural gas to the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) for its power production.

EGAT deputy governor Thana Putarungsi said after meeting with executives of the Metropolitan Electricity Authority (MEA) and the Provincial Electricity Authority (PEA) yesterday that power voltage may be lower in some Bangkok and suburban areas during April 5-14 but it will not be below standard level.

“With close cooperation among the three agencies, we believe we will overcome the crisis,” he said. “However, we have to explain to three major consumer groups: households, industrial and business sectors.”

He said boosting power reserves will be possible if total consumption is lower than 26,300 megawatts (MW), adding that power reserves on April 5 will be at 1,291 MW, from the normal 767 MW, thanks to reduced consumption by the private sector.

Thailand will have to purchase 200 MW of power from Malaysia, he said, reassuring that power outage will be avoided at industrial estates.

In a worst case scenario, houses in Bangkok’s outskirts will be hit by a blackout for only a few hours, he said, adding that electricity reserves will be increased to over 1,500 MW if people and factories use less power during the peak periods of 1-3 pm and 6.30-9 pm, Mr Thana said.