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Electricity consumption hits record highs: KPX

The state-run supervisor of electricity supply and consumption warned on Wednesday that power consumption nationwide has been hitting new records in the past couple of days, mostly due to the scorching summer heat.

The Korea Power Exchange reported on Wednesday that the maximum consumption rate hit 73.3 million kilowatts between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m., slightly higher than the day before.

Between these hours, the average temperature nationwide reached 33 degrees Celsius, or 91.4 Fahrenheit.

According to the KPX’s power reserve monitoring system, power reserves fell to 37.3 million kilowatts, in the “attention” category, the fourth-highest level among five categories of power reserves.

“The power reserves shifts up and down several times a day,” a KPX official said, asking that people save energy especially during the peak hours to keep energy reserves stable.

Raising the air-conditioning temperature by a couple degrees in every household and corporate building would greatly help to secure sufficient power reserves during the peak hours, the official added.

The power supply has become one of the government’s top priorities, especially after Korea Electric Power Corp., the nation’s sole supplier of electricity, came under fire for a nationwide power outage that occurred on Sept. 15, 2011.

The unprecedented electricity outage that day erupted around 3 p.m. as a heat wave pushed up electricity demand beyond capacity. The incident generated financial losses and inconvenience among business entities and residents alike, leading to criticism of the government.

By Chung Joo-won (
Korea Herald Youtube