Scourging heat straining grids in southern cities

Scourging heat straining grids in southern cities

Scourging heat straining grids in southern cities

Sweltering temperatures are straining the electric grids in the southern provinces of Adana and Mersin.

Energy consumption in those provinces hit record levels as people keep their air conditioners on almost 24 hours a day, while staff from utility companies are out in the field to ensure the power grids do not fail.

“It has always been very hot in here during summer. But this year, it is different. I have not seen anything like it before,” said the 79-year-old Tuncay Bedük from Adana.

Almost all households have an air conditioner in the city. Some people do not even have a washing machine at home but certainly have one of those devices cranked up to escape the extreme heat.

Employees of the Toroslar EDAŞ, which distributes electricity to some 8.5 million people in the provinces of Adana, Mersin, Osmaniye, Hatay, Gaziantep and Kilis, are working round the clock out in the field to make sure that electricity transformers and transmission lines withstand the scorching heat.

When millions of people crack up their air conditioners at the same time, the power grid comes under enormous strain.

Electricity consumption peaks during the evening hours.

Another reason for the high power use is migration. The population in Adana and Mersin has increased significantly over the past years due to the influx from Syria and Russia.

In the past, electricity consumption would peak for one or two months only, but as the population has grown, power use remains elevated throughout the year in some parts of those provinces.

Staff from the electricity company are now out in the field to replace some transformers with the ones with higher capacity, even installing fans to keep them cool, repairing the damaged transmission lines in temperatures as high as 40 degrees Celsius.

In some instances, cooling lubricants in transformers boil under scorching heat.

Engineers and other staff say they are fighting a natural disaster.

Some households have two or three air conditioners in Adana and Mersin.

“Those devices consume a lot of electricity,” experts said, adding that there are regulations as to how the electric wiring should be in the apartments.

“But when you have apartments with two or three air conditioners, this may cause problems for the grids. If the transmission company did not make the necessary investment in the grids, power outages happen,” they said.

Electricity consumption in Adana soared 34 percent on July 24 compared with the same day last year, while the increases were 40 percent in Mersin and 51 percent in Kilis.

Türkiye, Economy,