Heat wave sends power generation to new high

Updated: 2010-07-07 11:20
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BEIJING - A searing heat wave that has scorched many parts of China has brought the country's daily electricity generation to its highest level ever, touching 12.93 billion kilowatt-hours on Monday, according to data from the National Power Dispatch and Communication Center.

The figure was 6 percent higher than the past record, which occurred on July 21 last year, said Zhu Weijiang, deputy chief engineer with the center.

The heat wave is affecting at least 16 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities, according to the National Meteorological Center (NMC), which issued an orange-level heat alert on Tuesday, the second highest level.

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With temperatures over 35 degrees Celsius, the electricity load in Beijing, Tianjin, Fujian and north China hit record high on Monday, Zhu told Xinhua.

At the Shanghai World Expo, the electricity load surged to 110,000 kilowatts from 70,000 kilowatts at the Expo's opening, which added pressure to power grid of Shanghai and east China.

"As the heat wave continues, new power generation records could be set on Tuesday and Wednesday," Zhu said.

Zhu forecasted that power consumption would peak in late July or early August this year, when the national electricity load might climb to 13.5 billion kilowatts, up 10 percent from a year ago.

Power grid companies would strengthen monitoring and forecasting of increases in electricity demand and make better power distribution plans, so as to avoid a power shortage this summer, Zhu said.