Electricity demand may reach 15,500MW in irrigation season

Originally posted in The Business Standard on 30 January 2022

At present, the country is generating a maximum of 10,000MW of electricity per day

The energy division expects demand for electricity will go up to 15,500 megawatt in the upcoming irrigation season, compared to last year’s 14,097MW.

At present, the country is generating a maximum of 10,000MW of electricity per day.

The Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC) on Sunday said this at an inter-ministerial meeting on uninterrupted power supply during the irrigation season which starts from February every year and lasts till 31 May.

Due to the use of electricity to irrigate Boro paddy fields, the demand for power across the country goes up during this period.

The demand for gas during the irrigation season will also increase from 1,400 million cubic feet to 1,600 million cubic feet per day to generate the electricity in demand, said the BPC.

The potential maximum demand for furnace oil will be 70,500 tons and the potential maximum demand for diesel will be 30,700 tonnes.

State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources, Nasrul Hamid, told the meeting that an uninterrupted power supply would be ensured for the irrigation season.

“The supply of gas and fuel oil will be maintained with greater coordination among the power and energy divisions and other agencies concerned. Load management will be done properly,” he added.

He asked the authorities concerned to ensure the supply of natural gas and fuel oil as the Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) suggests.

The state minister emphasised increasing the supply of gas, furnace oil and diesel to increase power generation, and to provide gas on a priority basis to gas-fired plants capable of generating uninterrupted power.

He instructed BPDB officials to contact the railway ministry, road transport and highways departments, the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation, the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority, and the BPC, to ensure fuel transportation.

At the meeting, BPC, Petrobangla, the Public Security Division, energy division, the shipping ministry, information ministry, agriculture ministry, and the BIWTC highlighted their steps.

Power Secretary Md Habibur Rahman, BPDB Chairman Engineer Belayet Hossain, Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board Chairman Md Selim Uddin, Petrobangla Chairman Nazmul Ahsan and Power Cell Director General, Engineer Mohammad Hossain, also spoke at the virtual inter-ministerial coordination meeting.