Venezuela’s electrical grid has suffered from frequent blackouts and rapidly declining electricity production (PanAm Post).
“In Venezuela, now more than ever, there is a very high chance of facing a national blackout; the possibility is greater than in any other country,” stated Miguel Lara, an electrical engineer specializing in power systems, who for 30 years worked at the OPSIS, the entity responsible until 2004 for coordinating the operations and planning of the Venezuelan electrical grid.
Lara told the PanAm Post that the Venezuelan electrical grid is increasingly weakened and abandoned, and explained that the blackouts that were previously infrequent and lasted for a few hours, now happen daily and may take more than 24 hours to fix. He suggested that the South American country is twenty years behind where it should be, with respect to its electrical grid.
“The deterioration of the power grid has accelerated mainly because power generation has been falling to such a point that today Venezuela generates much less than what was produced 20 years ago,” he said.
“Already the equipment has millions of hours beyond its recommended use, each machine has up to two years during which it hasn’t been subjected to maintenance checks; there are no economic resources for new investments, and there is no trained personnel capable of supervising necessary work.”
The inadequate electrical grid in Venezuela is just one of the many precarious conditions that Venezuelans face thanks to the 21st Century socialism implemented by Hugo Chávez and continued by Nicolás Maduro. From January until March 12, 2018, the Committee of People Affected by Power Outage registered 1,979 power outages throughout the national territory.
Chavismo’s institutionalized underinvestment
Chavismo in Venezuela managed to turn the electrical system of the South American country into one of the most underdeveloped and poorly maintained in the world. While the Maduro regime has announced that it will finance solar energy projects in Caribbean islands, the nation faces dozens of blackouts on a daily basis, leaving at least six states simultaneously without electric power.
For more than 15 years, the Venezuelan State has not made the necessary investments in the thermoelectric generation system. The plants are working at 10% or 20% of their capacities. For this reason, from Caracas to states in the interior of the country, people suffer from daily blackouts, sometimes to such an extent that the country’s main airport has been paralyzed.
Venezuelans are living in a country where there is no water, there is no electricity, there is no food or medicine, and Chavismo, which now has been in power for 18 years, holds third parties responsible, blames alleged sabotage, and “economic and electric wars”, without ever solving any of these serious problems.
“The destruction of the Venezuelan electricity system was done on purpose.”