NEA incurs more losses due to power leakageThe Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) has witnessed an increase in net system losses, or commonly known as ‘electricity leakage’, in the last fiscal year at a time when the country is reeling under prolonged power cuts.
The Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) has witnessed an increase in net system losses, or commonly known as ‘electricity leakage’, in the last fiscal year at a time when the country is reeling under prolonged power cuts.
The leakage increased to 25.78 percent in the fiscal year 2015/2016 from 24.44 percent the year earlier despite its sustained efforts to reduce such losses, according to the annual report of the NEA. The authority had made available just over 5,100 GWh of energy in its system.
The authority attributed its inability to collect electricity tariffs from customers in central Tarai due to the prolonged unrest in the region for the rise in leakage during the last fiscal year. “In our financial system, the system losses also include the unpaid dues,” said Mukesh Raj Kafle, managing director of NEA. “For the majority of period, our staff could not visit customers for meter reading due to the strike in the region.”
Similarly, economic activities in the region were seriously affected with many customers defaulting on the electricity tariffs, he added.
However, the system losses at the NEA have always been on the higher side.
Low quality distribution system, huge amount of unpaid dues and the theft of electricity are major contributors to such leakages, according to the NEA.
While the generation and transmission systems adopted by the authority are of international standards, the distribution system is below par, Kafle conceded. “Our distribution system is really pathetic,” he said. “Our transformers are very old. The 11 and 33 kva lines we use for the electricity distribution is very inefficient.”
Likewise, the electricity theft has been another factor causing the high leakage in the NEA. “There are some districts where the leakage is as high as 60 to 70 percent,” said a senior NEA official.
‘Disconnect power supply to defaulters’
Energy Minister Janardan Sharma directed NEA officials to disconnect the power supply of the defaulters immediately. Speaking at a programme to mark the 31st anniversary of the authority on Wednesday, Sharma ordered the authority to disconnect power supply to top 10 defaulters within three days. “Also start the process of disconnecting power supply of other defaulters,” he said. NEA Managing Director Mukesh Raj Kafle said the authority will make a list of defaulters and will immediately start disconnecting their power connection. (PR)