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Shmyhal: Energy infrastructure will be ready for winter within next month

by Elsa Court and The Kyiv Independent news desk September 13, 2023 4:19 PM 2 min read
The Rivne Nuclear Power Plant, in Varash, Rivne Oblast, on September 10, 2023. (Photo by Roman Pilipey /AFP via Getty Images)
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Preparations for Ukraine's energy facilities to meet the challenges of the upcoming winter are in the final stage, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said during a government meeting on Sept. 12.

Russian forces attempted to cripple Ukraine's energy network with massive strikes during the fall of 2022 and winter of 2023, leading to frequent blackouts and a lack of heating across the country.

President Volodymyr Zelensky has warned that Russia is likely to attempt this strategy again next winter.

Shymal said that 84% of heating networks, 78% of central heating stations, more than 80% of residential buildings, and 86% of schools, kindergartens, and hospitals are ready for winter, adding that "it should be 100% in a month."

The government aims to have 25 thermal power plant units and nine nuclear power plant units ready to produce power by the start of the season.

Thermal power will provide Ukraine's energy system with 4.5 gigawatts (GW) of capacity, while nuclear power will provide 7.8 GW, according to the prime minister.

Thirty-five hydroelectric power units, which are either ready to produce energy or under repair, will provide 2.3 GW of energy, he said.

The prime minister said that Ukraine is focused on "energy independence," citing the fact that the Rivne Nuclear Power Plant is now using fuel from the U.S. company Westinghouse to end the "Russian monopoly" on supplying such fuel, he said.  

What in other countries would take months or years, "we install and repair in weeks," Shmyhal said.

Naftogaz CEO: Ukraine hits autumn gas storage target ahead of upcoming heating season
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