Taipower issues power rationing warning

Taiwan's electricity supply was tight on Wednesday, with state-run utility Taiwan Power Co. (Taipower) warning of possible power rationing as reserve capacity fell below a key threshold.

The power company estimated it would have an operating reserve margin of only 2.38 percent during peak periods of power usage and that its operating reserve -- the amount of power available beyond peak usage -- had fallen below 900 megawatts, automatically triggering the warning.

The alert came amid a surge in hot weather that pushed the mercury to an unseasonably warm 30 degrees Celsius around Taiwan.

Cheng Yu-tsai (???), the Taipower official in charge of power distribution, said peak electricity consumption reached about 3,240 MWs during the period between 11 a.m. and noon, while the maximum power supply capacity was an estimated 3,322.9 MWs for the day.

Consumption was lower than the company had expected, but Cheng said Taipower would closely monitor power supply conditions because the 1 p.m.-3 p.m. period was still a peak consumption period.

The official added that Taipower was preparing to guard against a power shortfall by activating measures to purchase electricity from its high voltage users.

Earlier Wednesday, Taipower adjusted its operating reserve margin estimate to as low as 1.62 percent after a generator at its Dalin Power Plant in Kaohsiung's Siaogang District reportedly tripped at 7:32 a.m.

The problem was fixed four hours later, according to the utility.

The pressure on the country's power supplies led the Executive Yuan, the government's administrative branch, to impose power saving restrictions in government offices from noon to 2 p.m., during which many air conditioners and lights were shut off.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel