Kyiv authorities have begun planning the evacuation of the city's three million residents if the Ukrainian capital suffers a complete blackout, according to the New York Times. The city is also establishing 1,000 heating centers, writes the NYT.
Russian forces have already damaged or destroyed about 40% of Ukraine's energy infrastructure. Russia's aim – which its leadership publicly admits – is to hinder civilians' access to electricity and heat, potentially inflicting humanitarian catastrophe in Ukraine.
On Oct. 22, for example, Russian attacks on critical infrastructure across Ukraine cut electricity to over 1.4 million Ukrainian households.
Ukraine's national energy utility said on Nov. 5 that it would continue to impose rolling blackouts in seven regions to help prevent a complete failure of Ukraine's electrical grid, writes the NYT.
Kyiv, Chernihiv, Cherkasy, Zhytomyr, Sumy, Kharkiv, and Poltava oblasts have power outages during the day with scheduled blackouts.
Kyiv officials would be likely to have at least 12 hours' notice before the grid was on the verge of failure. "We will start informing people and requesting them to leave" if it reaches that point, Roman Tkachuk, the director of security for the Kyiv municipal government, told the NYT.
"If there's no power, there will be no water and no sewage. That's why currently the government and city administration is taking all possible measures to protect our power supply system," he said.