Gov’t procures crude oil to enhance power generation

Government says the renewed intensity of Ghana’s power crisis should lessen next week following the purchase of crude oil for thermal plants in Tema in the Greater Accra region.

Government explains the crude oil will need treatment to remove metallic content for safe use. The treatment which takes a week is expected to be complete over the weekend.

Crude oil is a last resort as a source of power because it is expensive and constitutes a drain on government finances. But the shutting down of Atuabo Gas plant in the Western region, truncating the supply of cheap gas, has made reliance on crude necessary.

The expensive resource will be used to fire TICO plant in the Aboadze Thermal Enclave in the Western region.

The new levels of erratic power supply follows announcement by Tullow Oil Ghana of a breakdown of the FPSO which plays a key role in the supply of gas. The oil production company says gas supply will not be restored for another two weeks while repair works are underway.

Predictably, the worsening situation has triggered renewed frustrations with businesses bearing the brunt more.

Energy Minister Emmanuel Kofi Buah tells Joy News’ George Wiafe the situation is critical but the purchase of crude oil for the plants will help solve the problem quickly.

Government has reiterated its commitment to end a load shedding arrangement that consumers say has proved painful and sometimes unreliable.

The Volta River Authority says it is working to bring in 258 megawatts by November 2015.

Head of Communications at VRA, Sam Fletcher, confirmed that a 220megawatt thermal plant at Kpong in Greater Accra will be ready by October.

Some generators have been procured for the Tema power enclave which will provide 38 megawatts in November.

Ghana’s power problems have been persisting since 2012.

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