The countrywide load-shedding of electricity has been rising because of a huge gas shortage that has led to a significant fall in power generation.
Bangladesh Power Development Board’s official data shows that the country had to resort to 1,500 MW of load-shedding on Sunday while there was a forecast of a power-cut of 1,273 MW.
“But obviously, the authorities have to go for a load shedding of more than the projected amount”, said a top official of the BPDB, who preferred anonymity, UNB reports.
The official data shows the country’s highest power generation was recorded 12,115 MW at the evening on Sunday against a demand for 13,615 MW meaning a 1,500 MW gap between the peak demand and supply in power generation.
“This gap is being covered up by load shedding”, said the BPDB official.
Normally, the power generation varies between 1300-1400 MW and the highest generation was recorded 14,782 MW on April 16 this year.
According to BPDB official data, of the 1500 MW load shedding, Dhaka region experienced 400 MW while Chattagram 200 MW, Khulna 220 MW, Rajshahi 220 MW, Cumilla 140 MW, Mymensingh 120 MW, Sylhel 50 MW and Rangpur rewgions 150 MW on Sunday last.
However, many energy experts don’t trust the BPDB statistics. Rather they believe that the extent of the load shedding and interruption in power supply is more than the official figure.
“BPDB never provides an actual figure of its power supply scenario”, said energy expert and Consumers Association of Bangladesh’s senior vice chairman Prof M Shamsul Alam.
Meanwhile, many consumers in the capital Dhaka and elsewhere reported a huge load shedding and frequent interruption in power supply.
Habibure Rahman, a consumer of Uttara area in the city informed that he had to regularly experience load shedding in three to four spells a day and every time a power-cut continues for more than half an hour.
Similar experiences were shared by consumers in other areas in the city including Malibagh, Mouchak, Nakhalpara, Shantinagar, Mogbazar, Niketon, Gulshan, Mohammadpur, Mirpur, Sutrapur, Jatrabari and Badda.
They said the extent of such load shedding and interruption in power supply has been increasing in recent days.
BPDB officials attributed the fall in power generation to the shortage in gas supply. They said they have to suspend generation of 3650 MW of electricity due to shortage in gas supply to their power plants.
Recently, State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid admitted the crisis in power and gas supply.
In his verified facebook page he wrote: “Power production is being disrupted due shortage of gas. As a result, power supply is being disrupted in many places. The power generation generally will be normal once the gas supply improved”.
He also claimed the price hike of energy in the international market due to the war has put us in trouble like other countries.
“In such a situation I regret the temporary inconvenience”, he added.
State-owned Petrobangla officials noted that the country’s gas production and supply experienced a fall following a government decision not to import liquefied natural gas from the international spot market due to excessive price hike.
The per MMBtu of LNG is being sold on the global market over $35 while a few months back it was below $25. As a result, the local gas supply has decreased to 2,822 million cubic feet per day (mmcfd) from a regular supply of 3500 mmcfd which creates a shortage of about 700 mmcfd.