S Korean gov't warns of blackout, calls for cut in electricity use

19:04, January 12, 2011      

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The South Korean government on Wednesday warned of potential blackouts as power reserves drop in the face of skyrocketing domestic electricity consumption.

Faced with a prolonged cold spell, the country's demand for electricity hit new record highs this winter, spiking concerns power reserves might fall below the threshold level of 4 million kilowatts, Knowledge Economy Minister Choi Kyung-Hwan said in a statement.

"If situations worsen, some regions might experience blackouts, " Choi said, urging South Koreans to reduce power consumption during peak hours. "We desperately need your cooperation."

Domestic power demand for the winter is projected to soar to 72.50 million kilowatts, bringing the reserves below 4 million kilowatts and potentially hurting industries relying heavily on electricity, according to the ministry.

Once the reserves go below 1 million kilowatts, the government might consider temporarily cutting off electricity supply in order of priority, the ministry said.

Source: Xinhua

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