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Why there was a power failure in three countries of Central Asia at once

An overload on a transit line in Kazakhstan is said to be the cause of the power failure in three Central Asian countries at once.

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Power outages occurred on January 25 in Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan. In Tashkent, Kazakhstan is blamed for the failure, while in Alma-Ata, power engineers from Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan are considered as such.

According to the Minister of Energy of Kyrgyzstan, Doskul Bekmurzaev, cited by RIA Novosti, the failure in the energy ring of Central Asia was unprecedented; there have never been accidents of this magnitude in the region before.

At the same time, it should be taken into account that at present the energy ring of Central Asia (CA) includes only three countries. Initially, the energy supply scheme for the region, which was developed back in the 80s of the XX century, also included Tajikistan and Turkmenistan. The energy ring included 83 power plants, which made it possible to balance seasonal fluctuations in demand for electricity and the need for water for agricultural work. Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, dependent on the supply of water from Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan for irrigation, supplied oil, gas and coal to Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan at preferential prices, and they, in turn, did not run the turbines of the HPP at full capacity during the period when it was required by the farmers.

In the first decade of our century, the energy ring collapsed, countries headed for autonomous energy supply. But, as it turned out, this led to large financial losses and disruptions in the supply of electricity to the population and industry.

The work of the energy ring began to be restored in 2014. At the end of 2021, the decision to return to the unified energy system was made by Tajikistan, which accounts for the bulk of the total hydro potential of Central Asia. It is possible that if this had been done earlier, the blackout on January 25 might not have happened.

If we talk about Russia, then it is connected to the northern part of the energy system of Kazakhstan, and the Central Asian energy ring captures the southern part of the country. Therefore, our country could not provide assistance in supplying energy to the regions left without electricity. We export and import electricity from Kazakhstan. In 2021, for 9 months, the export of Russian electricity amounted to 1.17 billion kWh, and import - 1.02 billion kWh.

Why there was a power failure in three countries of Central Asia at once