Power cuts may be needed in certain areas if electricity is not purchased – Minister


Minister of Power and Energy Kanchana Wijesekera has warned that operations at the Samanalawewa hydroelectric power plant are likely to come to a complete halt by 16 August, following the decision to release water from the reservoir to the Udawalawe Reservoir.

Speaking in Parliament this morning (08 August), Wijesekera explained that electricity will need to be purchased in order to ensure an uninterrupted supply from 15 August onwards.

He noted that while a request has been made in this regard, a similar request was approved in March earlier this year.

Minister Wijesekera warned, however, that in the event the request to purchase electricity is  not approved, three-hour power cuts will need to be imposed in several areas including Matara, Galle, Ratnapura and Hambantota.

“We will need to impose three-hour power cuts daily in these areas, either in parts, one hour during the daytime and two hours during the night time, or all at once”, he said in this regard.

Meanwhile, the relevant authorities commenced releasing water from the Samanalawewa reservoir to the Udawalawe reservoir for agricultural purposes earlier today, after the Cabinet of Ministers on Monday (07 August) green-lighted Wijesekera’s proposal to release the maximum amount of water from Samanalawewa reservoir to Udawalawe reservoir required for agricultural purposes.

According to State Minister of Power & Energy D.V. Chanaka, water is being released at a rate of 3.5 million cubic meters per day for three days.

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