Iranian Power Consumption Hits All-Time High

Iranian Power Consumption Hits All-Time HighIranian Power Consumption Hits All-Time High

Iran’s electricity consumption reached a new peak of 51,025 megawatts on Saturday, the highest since keeping records started nearly a century ago.

The new record comes as high temperatures nationwide has driven electricity consumption to new heights, Mehr News Agency reported.

Iran’s southern cities experienced 50-degree Celsius temperature and the capital Tehran’s temperature reached 40 degrees Celsius, Mehr News Agency reported.

According to Iran Grid Management Company, if the rising trend in consumption persists, the Energy Ministry will have to take emergency measures such as temporarily cutting off supplies in critical regions. Last year’s highest-registered peak demand was about 50,177 MW.

Officials say Iran’s power grid has the capacity to sustain a peak usage of 54,000 MW this summer without suffering outages, which is 4,000 MW more than last year’s threshold.

With the country’s power industry witnessing a rise in consumption in the hot season, power plants’ stored electricity is down to its lowest levels, as it is reported to be 1,000 MW during peak demand hours in days and close to 2,098 MW in nights.

Iran’s electricity trade balance remained positive on Saturday and out of the total 1,803 MW swapped power with the neighboring countries, 1,445 MW of which accounted for exports.

This is while, power usage in the industrial sector witnessed a fall of 800 MW compared to April.

Iran's sixth five-year development plan (2016-21) entails an annual 5,000-megawatt rise in power production capacity, which currently stands at 74,000 MW.

  Power Swap Deals

To increase the country’s power grid sustainability, Iran has embarked on joint ventures, especially with the Caspian Sea littoral states, to synchronize its electricity network with the regional countries.

The Persian Gulf country currently has power exchange deals with seven neighboring states.

Iran, Russia, Armenia and Georgia reached a memorandum of understanding last year to connect their power grids by 2019.

A brief look at the map suggests the plan can be carried out entirely through Azerbaijan, as the country boasts the shortest route between Iranian and Russian borders.

Iran and Armenia are currently connected by two electricity lines, the third of which is being established to help materialize the prospective Iran-Russia power line.

Energy Minister Hamid Chitchian announced last week that the construction of infrastructures for the exchange of electricity with Azerbaijan has been completed and Iran can start power swap operations with its northern neighbor this summer.

The country has also held negotiations on setting up subsea electricity cable lines with at least two southern neighboring countries, which are purported to be the UAE and Oman.

Houshang Falahatian, deputy energy minister, earlier said in a statement that the project’s first stage encompasses power delivery to the UAE’s Abu Dhabi.

Officials believe electricity ties between different countries are essential, as they improve network management and load balancing, especially during peak hours.