LatinNews Daily - 10 May 2024

In brief: Costa Rica announces electricity rationing

*Costa Rica’s state-run electricity and telecommunications provider Grupo Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) has announced power cuts to be implemented as of 13 May lasting up to three hours daily as a result of drought caused in part by the El Niño weather phenomenon which has affected water levels in hydroelectric plants. The power cuts will not affect hospitals, industry or other high-voltage customers. Grupo ICE said however that in the next couple of weeks the national meteorological institute (IMN) is forecasting lower wind and higher rain levels which should boost electricity generation. The local and international media reports that the country last saw electricity rationing in 2007. The impact of drought is also affecting Costa Rica’s neighbours. Yesterday Honduras’ national dispatch centre (CND), which operates the electricity system and market, announced a 48-hour state of emergency in the national grid (SIN), citing high demand for electricity as a result of a “brutal” heat wave and prolonged drought. A CND statement said that overheating and overloading of circuits and transformers and dense smoke in various departments had led to reduced solar energy generation while 97% of wind energy has been lost, and over 150 megawatts (MW) of thermal generation is unavailable as a result of damage to generating units due to “suffocating temperatures”.

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