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 Emergency regime in energy sector takes effect

The state of emergency in Ukraine's energy sector introduced by the Cabinet on Feb. 16 has taken effect and will stay in force for at least one month, until March 17.

The users of electricity may face rolling blackouts if the energy savings turn insufficient.

The emergency regime will expand the powers of the central dispatcher of Ukrenerho, the major state-owned energy operator, making possible a manual adjustment of the power output at each particular power station.

A proposed set of measures is intended to reduce the consumption of anthracite coal, a specific type of coal produced only in eastern regions controlled by Russia-backed separatists, the delivery of which has been blocked by anti-terrorist operation (ATO) veterans and civil activists for three weeks now.

Read more: PM Hroisman requests NSDC to unblock coal supplies from occupied Donbas

Th Ministry of Energy believes the move will save 300,000 to 350,000 tons of anthracite coal.

According to Minister of Energy Ihor Nasalyk, the emergency regime may be extended by no more than one month.

Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Regional Development and Housing and Communal Services Hennadii Zubko told Ukrainski Novyny that coal supplies across the demarcation line halted on Feb. 10.

Read more: Ukraine's government introduces emergency measures in country's energy sector

Earlier, the Ministry of Energy and Coal Mining initiated the introduction of emergency regime in the energy sector citing the cessation of anthracite supply.

Ukrenerho stated the anthracite stocks at thermal power plants would be enough to ensure the stable operation of Ukraine's power system during a 40-day period.

Read more: "This crisis is due to an external factor, on part of Russia," - Zubko on Donbas blockade

On Jan. 25, anti-terrorist operation (ATO) veterans blocked the Luhansk-Popasna haul, launching a trade blockade of the occupied Donbas areas. The movement of 12 trains with a total of 700 cars has been barred.

Later, Deputy Minister for the Occupied Territories and IDPs Heorhii Tuka said the decision to launch trade blockade was extra-legal. Minister for the temporarily occupied territories and IDPs Vadym Chernysh spoke against possible ban on commodities delivery across the contact line in the Donbas: "We need to be able to deliver coal, otherwise we will face problems throughout the country."

On Feb. 2, participants of the trade blockade barred another railroad track near Bakhmut.Источник: https://censor.net.ua/en/n428180