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Boris Gryzlov has slammed the national power utility UES of Russia for blackouts in several of the country’s regions
State Duma Speaker Boris Gryzlov has slammed the national power utility UES of Russia for blackouts in several of the country’s regions. As he replied to media questions on Thursday, the lower house speaker made some very caustic remarks: “The reform of the electric power industry is well in progress and at least one result is unmistakably in sight. The operation of the switch has been polished to perfection. And the UES of Russia proudly demonstrates this achievement to one and all.” Preventing breakdowns in the energy systems of Russian regions during the peak load hours may require the introduction of restrictions for a number of corporate consumers, but residential areas, hospitals, schools, pre-school childcare centers, social facilities and strategic enterprises will remain unaffected, the UES of Russia technical director, Boris Vainzikher, told a news conference devoted to preparations for the autumn and winter season earlier this week. He said there was a list of 16 regions where partial blackouts were possible, including Moscow, the Moscow Region, St. Petersburg, the Leningrad region, the south of the Komi Republic, and a number of other energy systems. The lists of facilities to which restrictions may apply is to be agreed with the local authorities and industrial managers. The UES of Russia said special working groups had been created for developing and implementing programs for the reliable electric power supply in the regions. These groups incorporate representatives of local energy companies. The programs’ implementation will be controlled by the UES of Russia’s head office for reliability. Vainzikher said “this type of arrangement used in Moscow last year made it possible to live through the peak load season without restrictions on retail consumers. Alongside this, in order to compensate for power shortages in regions during rush hour consumption, the UES of Russia has been reconsidering its export and import strategy in favor of greater supplies to the domestic market. Currently measures are being taken to keep up the required fuel oil and coal supplies in December 2006 and in January-February 2007. Negotiations are on with all fuel providers.
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