Electricity sector needs $1.2b every year

June 10, 2020 - 13:28

TEHRAN – Iranian Energy Minister Reza Ardakanian says the country’s electricity sector requires at least $1.2 billion annually to realize its development goals, IRNA reported.

Speaking in a parliament open session on Wednesday, Ardakanian noted that a part of these needs is met through exporting electricity to the neighboring countries.

“Iraq is Iran's most important neighbor to which we are currently exporting electricity, thus meeting part of the foreign currency needed in the electricity industry,” the minister said.

Ardakanian also mentioned the efficiency of the country’s thermal power plants and said: "A study of different regions of the world shows that while the average efficiency of thermal power plants in the world is 37.3 percent, this number is slightly better in our country than the global average."

The official put the power plants’ average efficiency in the previous Iranian calendar year (ended on March 19) at 38.6 percent, noting that efforts will be made this year to raise the figure to more than 39 percent.

He went on underlining the importance of the combine-cycled power plants saying, combined cycle power plants are among the most important units that can save significant amounts of natural gas and reduce environmental pollutants.

Ardakanian expressed hope that the government would support the ministry to provide the necessary resources for these power plants in order to save more fuel.

We have the capacity to add up to 7,500 megawatts new steam units to these power plants, he said.

Elsewhere in his remarks, the minister mentioned the significant fall in the electricity losses in the national power grid and noted that six years ago (when President Rouhani took office for the first 4-year period), losses in the distribution sector stood at nearly 15 percent, while currently the figure has been declined to 9.76 percent.

According to the official this level of reduction in the electricity losses mean that the Energy Ministry has saved the country nearly 500 trillion rials (about $20.8 billion) worth of electricity.

Iran’s total power generation capacity currently stands at about 85,000 MW.

Currently, combined cycle power plants account for the biggest share in the country’s total power generation capacity followed by gas power plants.

In early April, Ardakanian announced that the ministry plans to inaugurate 12 thermal power plants with a total capacity of 2,100 MW as well as hundreds of solar and wind farms and other small scale power stations in the current Iranian calendar year (ends on March 20, 2021).

According to the minister, following a program called “A-B-Iran”, the Iranian Energy Ministry is going to inaugurate 250 major water and electricity projects worth 500 trillion rials (about $11.9 billion) during the current year.

EF/MA

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