How gas and water problems destroy 4,100 MW power grid in 4 days

Instances of gas shortages and falling water levels ripped more than 4,100 megawatts (MW) of electricity from the national grid in the first four days of March.

Data from the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), which operates the grid, shows that in the first four days of March, the grid lost over 4,100 MW.

The analysis indicates that the low water level affected the Shiroro and Jebba hydropower plants with losses of 307 MW and 125 MW. Egbin lost 514 MW due to faults, Geregu lost 230 MW while Alaoji NIPP lost 263 MW. Omotosho NIPP lost 233 MW, Omoku failed to generate 112 MW, Okpai could not supply 204 MW while Afam VI saw its generation drop by 511 MW.

More so, the gas shortage affected some other power plants: Olorunsogo lost 104 MW, Omotosho gas lost 102 MW, Sapele NIPP lost 263 MW, Olorunsogo NIPP lost 240 MW, Geregu NIPP lost 435 MW and Ihovbor lost 142 MW while Odukpani NIPP was shut down, losing 575 MW.

Nigerian electricity consumers have been complaining about deteriorating electricity supply since the start of this month amid cries of increased electricity bills. Some of the distribution companies (DisCos) had criticized TCN for reducing the capacity of electricity it transmits to distribution load centers.

However, the latest network operations report stated, “The current nationwide load shedding is the result of very low power generation by the GenCos for TCN to go through the transmission network to the nationwide distribution companies.”

The report further states that since January, at least 14 GenCos were either not producing or had limited production. 23 power plant turbines were not producing; the factories concerned are Omotosho, Olorunsogo, Omoku, Omotosho NIPP, Delta Power, Afam, Olorunsogo NIPP, Ihovbor NIPP, Sapele Steam, Sapele NIPP, Odukpani NIPP and Okpai plant.

Additionally, the Jebba and Shiroro hydropower plants had constraints resulting in a loss of 232 MW on the grid due to low water levels.

During the period, some GenCos including Jebba and Shiroro hydroelectric power stations; Omotosho, Olorunsogo, Delta, Afam VI, Ihovbor, Geregu and Odukpani lost 3,180 MW of the grid due to outage or scheduled maintenance.

TCN warned that this situation could continue if power generation does not improve. “It is important to note that unless cumulative power generation increases significantly for TCN to pass on to distribution companies nationwide, TCN will have no choice but to continue to shed .”

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