The Straits Times
www.straitstimes.com
Published on Nov 16, 2012
 

S. Korea warns of rolling power blackouts this winter after nuclear closures

 
 

SEOUL (REUTERS) - South Korea may have to bring in rolling power blackouts this winter after the closure of nuclear plants for safety checks means the electricity network will have less than a third of normal reserve capacity.

Asia's fourth-largest economy said it plans to add 4,000 megawatts (MW) of power supply capacity through savings and new plants in a bid to head off potential blackouts.

The nuclear problems have increased the risk of power shortages in the harsh Korean winter after the closure of two reactors to replace parts with fake certificates and an extended shutdown of another reactor where microscopic cracks were found.

The northeast Asian country is heavily dependent on oil, gas and coal imports, but usually supplies about a third of its electricity from nuclear power generation from its 23 reactors.