By Sami Zaptia.
Tripoli, 28 July:
India’s ambassador, Mr Anil Trigunayat, met with Ibrahim Barasi, Libya’s Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energies last . . .[restrict]week (25 July) to discuss the possibilities of enhanced cooperation between the two nations in the power and energy sector.
Ambassador Trigunayat briefed Minister Barasi on the ‘globally acknowledged expertise of Indian companies’ like BHEL, which currently has a joint venture named ECCO in Libya, and has effectively and successfully commissioned several power projects in different parts of the country.
The issues regarding increasing the efficiency of Libya’s existing power plants by as much as 300 MW for each unit through the application of new technologies, were also discussed.
Minister Barasi expressed his satisfaction with the performance and contributions of the Indian company and stated that it has completed the project in time despite force majeure.
More efficient combined cycle mechanism
He also showed interest in the proposed combined cycle mechanism that could substantially enhance the output of existing power plants without additional fuel consumption.
India offers training for Libyans
Equally, since capacity building of Libyans is an important dimension of Indo-Libyan cooperation, ambassador Trigunayat informed the Minister that India had offered 25 fully funded scholarships to Libya under the Indian Technical & Economic Cooperation Programme.
The ambassador also suggested that India could consider more specific requests for training in the traditional and new and renewable sources of energy at prestigious Indian institutes.
An invitation to visit India
The Indian ambassador also extended an invitation to the Minister to lead a delegation to India to attend the International Renewable Energy Seminar on ‘Energy Access’ from October 9-10, 2012.
This seminar will focus on delivery of energy to develop integrated sustainable and affordable solutions in support of the Sustainable Energy for all targets.
Revolution-time damage to electricity supply lines
Libya’s power supply infrastructure suffered serious damage, mainly to transmission lines and substations, during the 17 February Revolution which led to nation-wide power cuts for extended periods last year.
The repairs have been on-going, with further east-west links to power lines being completed only last week.
Increased power demands
Despite these repairs, it is believed that Libya needs to increase its generation capacity in order to meet the fast and ever-increasing demands. Some of these increases of generation capacity will come by enhancing the productivity of existing plants, as well as the building of new plants.
Summer-time power cuts
With the onset of summer, and the increased use of air conditions, power cuts had returned after a long absence just before the start of the holy month of Ramadan, with some areas having no power for over 6 hours.
Public engagement campaign to reduce wasteful consumption
However, the authorities took some emergency short term measures to ensure that there were no power cuts during the fasting month. These measures included a better public relations exercise by the Ministry of Electricity such as the introduction of the real-time electricity consumption meter on Libyan TV channels.
This was in order to encourage the public to use electricity more efficiently and to cooperate in reducing consumption when the maximum generation capacity is reached – as indicated to viewers live via the on-screen TV meters. [/restrict]