June 03, 2013 11:20
The government is implementing measures to tackle a possible power shortage amid predictions that the nation may experience an electricity shortfall early this month in the wake of numerous nuclear reactors having been shut down.
Maintenance work on the No. 1 nuclear reactor at the Wolseong power station in Gyeongju, North Gyeongsang Province was scheduled to begin on June 8, Korea Power Exchange said on Sunday. "But it has been postponed to June 17 so we can be better prepared for any power supply shortage," it added.
The power authority forecast that the reserve would hover between 3 million and 3.5 million kW in the first week of June, before dropping to 2.5 million kW the following week.
The maintenance work was delayed as other measures were considered insufficient to raise the power reserve for the second week of June to between 3 million and 4 million kW.
Demand for electricity to power air-conditioners and other appliances is expected to rise in tandem with the climbing temperatures. The Korea Meteorological Administration announced on Sunday that daytime highs will hit around 30 degrees Celsius nationwide this week. It added that the mercury will swing between 28 and 31 degrees at its peak in the capital from Monday to Friday -- two to four degrees higher than the average recorded at this time of year between 1980 and 2010.
"We will manage the power demand during peak times by adjusting the working hours of businesses," said an official at the Korea Power Exchange. "If we operate all the power generators in the private sector to their full capacity of 500,000 kW, we will be able to secure power reserves of over 4 million kW."
When the power reserve falls below 5 million kW, an automatic alert system goes into action.
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