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Renewable Energy to Egypt's Rescue?

Govt: Power Cuts Crisis Over Within Days

Egypt's power crisis could soon be coming to a close, as the government has announced that coal will be used to combat energy shortage, fuelling fears over environmental repercussions.

Egypt's power-cut misery could soon be at an end as government officials claim that the current crisis is set for a gradual improvement starting Sunday.

A statement by Egypt PM Ibrahim Mehleb said the crisis would ease next week with a 50% improvement by the end of the month and powercuts made history within four months.

He told reporters: "We are behind by at least 10,000 megawatts of electricity. We admit we have a problem but we are facing it."

Electricity Minister Mohammed Shaker blamed the problem on a gap between consumption and production, but promised the government will add a total of 4,810 megawatts to its more than 22,000-megawatt total production by November.

Government officials are planning to use environmentally unfriendly coal power to solve the problem, after the importation of coal was approved by the government earlier this year.

Egyptian officials have previously been quick to pass the buck, blaming gas shortages, poor maintenance and even the Muslim Brotherhood for the problem.

The latest misery comes thanks to gas shortages and dire conditions at power stations.
Meanwhile it has emerged that some power stations operate at no more than 25% of their stated capacity, causing blackouts for millions.

Among the worst affected areas are towns in the Nile Delta, which have suffered from cuts of up to 12 hours in recent days.

However Cairenes have also faired poorly with certain areas of the capital, such as Dokki and Maadi, facing up an average of 6-8 hours per day without electricity in recent days.

The crisis has left many families struggling, and countless businesses in the food industry battling to save their perishable produce.

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