Sri Lanka appeals for power saving as reservoirs run dry

July 05, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lanka has appealed to the public to reduce consumption during peak hours, saying hydro-power reservoirs were running dry and several thermal plants had broken down but no power cuts will be imposed. The power ministry said in a statement no power cuts will be imposed despite reports of unofficial power cuts.

The state power utility Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) was meeting current demand for power with difficulty, having to rely mainly on thermal power plants many of which were also not functioning owing to repairs, it said.

It said consumers should reduce use of lighting, fans and air-conditioning during the 6.30pm – 9.30pm peak consumption period.

Water levels in hydro-power reservoirs were falling rapidly and in the Laxapana hydro-power complex consisting of the Castlereigh and Maussekelle reservoirs had fallen to “critical levels”, the statement said.

There were problems in generating power and supplying water for farmers for cultivation and also supplying water for drinking water, it said.

Although thermal power generation capacity had increased several plants were being repaired because of technical faults.

The new 300m megawatt Lakvijaya coal power plant in