350 million people affected by global power outages: Report


According to a new study, a major power outage in 2021 affected about 350 million people, or 4 percent of the world’s population.

In a report titled “Are you entering an era when power supply is cut off?” IHS Markit has discovered that extreme weather and energy transition trends have compromised reliability and disrupted some of the world’s largest power sources, including the United States and China.

Global analytics, information and solutions companies also emphasized that these developments have put pressure on other countries that can withstand existing problems, such as Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

Rama Zakaria, Associate Director of Global Electricity and Renewable Energy at IHS, said that changes in climate-related weather patterns and poorly managed energy transitions are like permanent underinvestment in power generation and grid assets. It states that it has the potential to “exacerbate new challenges” and “old challenges.” Mark it.

“In addition to the high frequency of extreme weather events and the out-of-sync pace of the energy transition, the possibility of a new era of more frequent power interruptions increases,” Zakaria added.

Power lines are shown in Houston on Tuesday, February 16, 2021.
February 16, 2021, power lines in Houston, Texas. (David J. Phillip / AP Photo)

With the prevalence of coldsnaps and droughts, the authors of the study point out that it is becoming increasingly difficult to predict supply and demand. According to the report, this can affect wholesale electricity prices, escalate the threat of power shortages, and change conditions related to operating voltage and transmission flow.

The shift to solar and window resources also puts a strain on utilities. The IHS report hints that transmission and distribution infrastructure has been a significant setback since “Wind and Solar Resources.” [are] It is usually located far from the load center, which causes grid bottlenecks and reduced supply.

“Fossil fuel supply remains the main form of energy in most parts of the world. If that supply is curtailed faster than the decline in demand, and before alternative technologies close the gap, shortages occur and prices “It could lead to soaring prices,” said Xizhou Zhou, Vice President and Managing Director of Global Power and Renewable Energy at IHS Markit.

Global Energy Crunch

COVID-19 During the public health crisis, the global energy industry is on a roller coaster.

In the early days of the pandemic, the world was flooded with crude oil, filling floating storage equipment and storage facilities in Cushing, Oklahoma. During the blockade and restrictions, production stopped, demand stopped, and prices fell below zero.

As the international economy gradually reopened, major economies consumed significant amounts of crude oil and natural gas, running out of inventories around the world. Many countries that turned to renewables relied on coal to keep their electricity on because production couldn’t meet demand.

Over the last 12 months, power outages in China have intensified, closing factories and impacting economic growth. The country’s State Grid Corp. has warned of power outages due to tight supply in winter and sluggish hydropower. As a result, Beijing has introduced electricity distribution.

“The grid will have a tighter overall balance between supply and demand and electricity shortages in some regions,” the company said in a statement in November. “The current power supply and demand situation in the area managed by the company has returned to normal.”

Power outages are almost commonplace in India. Some states have endured power outages in the face of coal shortages, despite rising coal production.

The same situation is happening in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.

Europe is witnessing a severe energy crisis after failing to generate enough electricity from renewable energy sources. Commodity trading company Trafigura Group, Recent annual report “The structural shift from coal and nuclear to wind and solar is also causing serious strain on the power system.”

Epoch Times Photo
Wind turbines in Papalote, Texas, June 15, 2021. (Brandon Bell / Getty Images)

Despite its vast green infrastructure, Europe was unable to keep up with the surge in demand. In particular, production declined due to low wind speeds most of last year.

European Union gas reserves are below the five-year average. Due to the potential for military conflicts on the Ukraine-Russia border, blocks in 27 countries will need to import more crude oil and liquefied natural gas from other major energy production markets.

Faced with an energy crisis and potential government price caps, European utilities are raising billions of dollars from the bond market.

Even the United States, one of the world’s largest producers of energy, has endured tough times. Last year, Winter Storm Uri blinded Texas and destroyed its utility. Due to the approaching state of vigorous winter weather, some industry experts claim that many gas production and supply systems remain vulnerable because they are not protected against the cold.

So far in 2022, it has been a tough winter for tens of millions of Americans. The east coast is covered in heavy snowstorms, killing about one million people.

Blackstone co-founder Stephen Schwarzmann warned that these shortfalls could lead to higher inflation and social unrest as energy pressures increase and prices do not fall. ..

“We will really run out of energy,” he said. Meeting in Saudi Arabia During October. “And when you’re short, it just costs more, and it probably costs more. And when that happens, you’re in the world, especially in emerging markets. You will get very unhappy people. “

Crude oil and natural gas prices have been trading at their highest levels in the last few years, but several analysts and strategists have told The Epoch Times that many companies will invest in more capacity and volume. He says he is refraining. They predict that this will promote an environment where demand continues to outpace supply.

Andrew Moran

follow

Andrew Moran covers business, economics, and finance. He has been a writer and reporter in Toronto for over 10 years and has signed Liberty Nation, Digital Journal and Career Addict. He is also the author of “Cash War”.