Grave situation in energy sector; Enemalta explains

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

Top officials of Enemalta Monday evening outlined the grave energy situation Malta could be faced with in the coming weeks in the energy sector. Information given included the possibility of more power cuts, confirmation of the news that the interconnector is out of action, and that hefty sums are needed to remedy the situation, even temporarily.

The press conference by Enemalta officials comes after a number of power outages affected Malta. One such outage left Malta in a total blackout situation. Other, less severe outages including those on  Sunday and Monday left great parts of Malta in the dark. Moreover the social media on Monday were rife with an apocalyptic description of what was going to happen.

No date given for solution

Enemalta officials confirmed that the interconnector between Malta and Sicily is totally out of action as two of the three undersea cables were damaged, probably by a ship’s anchor. It is believed that cables 30 kilometers off Ragusa were damaged in an area which is 150 meters deep.

This means that Malta’s energy regulator will have to daily fork out €150,000 a day to power all other turbines thus reducing interruptions until the problem is resolved. Besides, the technical survey to assess the level of damage done to the interconnector is estimated to approximately cost €1,000,000. Coming Thursday the survey of the extent of the damage will commence and a report is expected by the following week.  It is only then that a different team could start working to repair the damage. The cost for the repairs is not as yet known.

Enemalta could not provide an exact date of when the undersea cables could be fixed but it has made a contingency plan to alleviate the situation if the interconnector is still not functioning till the summer.

Enemalta officials also said that they are taking action to remedy the situation as far as possible. It believes that it has enough capacity to cope with the demand.