By Libya Herald reporters.
Tripoli, 9 June 2015:
Four Misratan militiamen were killed and several wounded when IS forces overran Sirte’s Gulf Power . . .[restrict]station this morning, taking the last key point in the coastal town that was still held by Libya Dawn military.
It appears that a large IS force numbering as many as 200 assaulted the power plant to the west of the town early today. Members of Misrata’s 166 brigade which had been holding the position retreated in the face of what was described as overwhelming odds. It is not known how many militiamen were posted in the facility. IS used social media this morning to announce its victory.
Four new turbines were being installed at the power plant which would have produced 1,400 MW of power for central and western Libya. However Turkish, Korean and Indian engineers abandoned the project when fighting began last summer. The one new turbine that was installed broke down within 48 hours of being run up.
Over and above technical problems, GECOL has struggled to bring oil fuel into the port.
If for any reason the power station stops operating the impact on the western section of the national grid is likely to be negligible. Therefore as temperatures in Tripoli reached 33 degrees centigrade, the power cuts experienced in some part o the capital were not, as speculated, because IS had stopped the Sirte station from generating.