By Nchimunya Miyoba
Zesco says it is on course with most projects embarked on in the province of Copperbelt to improve its power supply and avoid power rationing.
The various power expansion projects have made the power utility firm to be well above the demand of power which is needed during peak hours.
Demand Side Chief Engineer Wilcliff Chipeta said Zambia needs 2, 200 megawatts (mw) during peak hours and the company was generating a total of 2, 806mw.
Mr Chipeta was speaking this yesterday during a media workshop held at Sherbourne hotel to engage journalists on the various programs and initiatives embarked on this year.
He said the country has been blessed with good stocks of water to continue generating power there putting the country away from the infamous load management (load shedding).
He encouraged Zesco customers to be using energy saving bulbs as opposed to conversational bulbs (incandescent bulbs) in order to save energy.
Speaking at the same function, Zesco Copperbelt Divisional Manager Wilbroad Chanda said that most of projects are at 75 per cent completion rate with most of them internally funded.
Mr Chanda said that some of the projects that had been completed are the New Scaw with 80 MVA 66/11 KV substation in Kitwe at a total cost of USD 2.6 million.
The Scaw project he said would increase power capacity and availability of power in the industrial area, the central business district, Miseshi and Chachacha areas in Kitwe district.
Others are New Ndeke in Mufulira which was completed at a cost of USD 2.8million and the establishment of the New Ndeke in Chambishi Mwambashi at the total cost of USD 11.7million.
He said the completed projects will interlink the three areas and increase electricity supply security in Kitwe, Kalulushi and Lufwanyama.
With the above projects, Mr Chanda said there was a growth on customer.
He said the customer base in the province had increased from 182,194 in 2013 to 246,900 customers to date.
He said despite the many achievements the company had made, Mr Chanda they were many challenges one of them been the network expansions limitations in townships and the up hazard settlements
He bemoaned the continued vandalism of its infrastructure as it is affecting the operations of the power utility.
Mr Chanda observed that the current low electricity tariffs is not supportive of production costs.