Gaza’s Sole Power Plant Shut Down

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April 21, 2017
Gaza’s Sole Power Plant Shut Down
by Stephen Lendman
Last Saturday, the plant shut down for lack of fuel. Funds donated by Qatar and Turkey were exhausted.
Gaza’s Energy Authority said it won’t buy more unless hostile PA authorities exempt it from fuel excise taxes it can’t afford to pay.
Under less dire conditions, electricity is severely limited. It’s been reduced from eight to six hours, followed by 12-hour blackouts. 
Maintenance problems on Monday reduced power intervals to every four hours on, 12 hours off.
Gaza Energy Authority’s deputy chairman Fathi al-Sheikh explained monthly operating costs for two plant generators are about $13.6 million. Lifting the fuel tax would reduce it to around $5.5 million, a major savings.
Gaza buys 80% of its electricity from Israel, the rest from Egypt. When plant generators are operating, they supply 60 megawatts of power – 400 megawatts required to supply Strip needs.
Blockading Gaza, Israeli wars, along with frequent air and ground attacks lie at the root of its problems. Inadequate funding prevents proper maintenance.
Israel has the power to change things. Another preemptive war is more likely. Gazan infrastructure already is in deplorable condition.
Israel wants it kept this way, enforcing harshness, holding two million Gazans hostage to its viciousness, denying them fundamental rights everyone deserves.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.