Serbia decides to limit power supply to some consumers.

By bne IntelliNews February 10, 2012
The Serbian government said it decided to limit the electricity supply to some institutions and large commercial consumers, which are not vital for the daily functioning of the state. The decision was taken in order to protect the national power system, the government said in a statement. It added the move was prompted by a report of power utility EPS, which showed that despite all efforts, the extremely bad weather conditions have made the operation of the grid system very difficult. The electricity will not be cut off to the citizens and to organisations that provide vital services, including power plants, hospitals, water suppliers and food factories, among others. EPS director general Dragomir Markovic said that the company can sustain production without making restrictions for only seven to ten more days if the consumption persists at such record levels, news service reported on Feb.9. Markovic added there are no further capacities for raising the power production and there are no additional technical means available to increase electricity import, which has reached its maximum. Earlier this week, the government said Serbia needs to cut its power consumption by more than 10% because all components of its energy system have been overloaded and operating in extremely difficult conditions. The electricity production should also be cut by some 500 MWh, Petar Skundric, a member of the working group monitoring the safety of energy supplies in the 2011/2012 heating season, has said. Skundric was speaking after a new record-high power consumption level of 162 million kilowatt-hours was reached on Feb. 7. Serbia, similar to most European countries, has been hit by heavy snowfalls and freezing temperatures as 13 people have lost their lives so far. The government declared on Feb. 5 a week of emergency situation on the country's entire territory, saying the normal functioning of the state has been jeopardised by the severe weather conditions. It said this week the schools should remain closed until Feb. 20. The daily deliveries of Russian gas to Serbia have been cut by two million cubic metres and the country is compensating this volume from domestic production and reserves that can bring some five million cubic metres of gas daily.

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