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Renewed Call for Judicious Electricity Consumption

Renewed Call for Judicious  Electricity Consumption Renewed Call for Judicious  Electricity Consumption

The Energy Ministry is adopting measures to ensure that growing power demand will be met during the hot summer season, a deputy energy minister said.

Houshang Falahatian said plans should be designed to raise awareness on the need for judicious electricity consumption across sectors, the ministry's official news portal reported on Saturday.

Forecasts suggest that electricity demand will hit a peak of 56,000 megawatts this summer, up from a record-high of 52,790 MW last year.

"Regardless of what we do to expand power capacity and infrastructure, as long as the culture of judicious energy consumption is not ingrained among the masses, supply cuts cannot be avoided in peak hours."

Falahatian said the ministry is collaborating with other organizations, such as the Vice Presidency for Women and Family Affairs, to promote sustainable consumption patterns among households.

“To preserve energy resources, state bodies, including Tehran Construction Engineering Organization (TCEO) and Iran Fuel Conservation Company (IFCO) ought to come together and propose workable plans. Consumption patterns must change and the media can play a key role in helping nurture the notion of reasonable energy consumption,” he noted.

Commenting on a memorandum of understanding that was signed between IFCO and TCEO to pool strategies to optimize energy consumption, he added that such agreements can help change consumption patterns and offer homeowners incentives for judicious energy use.

Pointing to plans to allocate up to $78 million to renovate and expand power transmission lines and substations, Falahatian said the measure will help curb energy waste and electricity load across the national grid to avoid outages and load shedding in the big cities.

Hamid Chitchian, the energy minister, believes that people are still indifferent in the way they use electricity because it is cheap.

Seyyed Mehdi Mirsalehi, an official at the Ministry of Industries, Mining and Trade, blames the high energy consumption squarely on the heavy subsidies given to consumers.

Experts say consumers pay a fraction of the real cost. This has not only led to huge increases in energy use, but has also taken a toll on the Energy Ministry’s finances, according to official reports.

“If electricity was sold at the real price, the ministry would be able to not only settle its unpaid bills ($11 billion) to the private sector, but also implement key development plans,” he said in March.

Chitchian says to save energy and change consumption patterns, subsidies must be cut and tariffs moved closer to real prices. Electricity is sold at the subsidized price of 530 rials (about 0.017 cents) per kilowatt-hour.

 

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