ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday, April 01, 2007
Vol. 41 - No 44

Power cuts likely, minister turns to gods for rain

By Shelani Perera

A power cut of 30 to 60 minutes will be imposed during peak hours, if the country does not receive rain in the next three weeks, Power and Energy Minister John Seneviratne told The Sunday Times.

He said that due to the continuing dry weather, water levels at the hydroelectric power reservoirs were running low and peak-hour power cuts would have to be imposed if the rains did not come soon.

The minister said that at present 35 percent of power came from the hydroelectric system and 65 percent from thermal power generation which was costly. Thus if the drought prevails, the country could not afford to generate more thermal power and power cuts would be needed.

The minister and CEB officials yesterday took part in a Pinkama and Bodhi Pooja at the Sacred city of Anuradhapura to obtain the blessing of rain.

“We are turning to the gods asking for rain. The situation is very serious. We are also appealing to the people to conserve electricity’ Mr. Seneviratne said.

Meanwhile the Water Supply Board also warned yesterday that its reservoirs were running dry and urged the people to use water sparingly.

An official said salt water from the sea had seeped into some reservoirs and residents were complaining of a salty taste in the water.

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Copyright 2007 Wijeya Newspapers Ltd.Colombo. Sri Lanka.