EghtesadOnline: The decrepit power distribution network is a major factor contributing to soaring electricity blackouts in the capital Tehran, a member of Iran Electricity Industry Syndicate said.
"A part of Tehran's power grid went on stream in 1973 when the city's population stood at 4 million," Alireza Kolahi was also quoted as saying by Mehr News Agency.
According to the official, the Energy Ministry has made major investments in electricity infrastructure, yet it has been oblivious to renovating the age-old distribution grid.
"Curbing power wastage is as important as its generation," Kolahi said, adding that the administration should have invested $3 billion in ventures to stop electricity wastage between 2001 and 2013, yet such projects were never prioritized, according to Financial Tribune.
The official noted that consumption patterns have undergone dramatic changes in industrial, agriculture and household sectors. Nonetheless, power is still distributed in the metropolis by means of outdated methods and a ramshackle network.
"Tehran's electricity network has not had a major overhaul in more than 30 years, which has become a source of concern among officials regarding the repercussions, such as the high rate of electricity wastage," he said.
According to Kolahi, renovating substation equipment in the sprawling and overpopulated metropolis is a monumental task.
Commenting on tenders to renovate a part of the grid, he noted that most private companies are not willing to play a part in the venture due to the dysfunctional and bloated bureaucracy.
Moreover, they did not agree to abide by the terms of the tender, such as using mostly domestically-produced equipment in the renovation process.
Kolahi believes that the government can compensate for the lack of investment in reducing power wastage by allocating funds to build small-scale power plants with distributed generation systems.
Distributed generation, or DG, refers to electricity produced in small quantities near the point of use. It reduces the cost and complexity associated with transmission and distribution, while offsetting peak electricity demand and stabilizing the local grid.
According to ILNA, power load reached a new peak of 56,801 megawatts on Tuesday. The previous record of 56,542 was registered on June 30.
Power consumption is forecast to reach a peak of 58,000 MW this summer season, the warmest days of which are yet not here.