Tight power supply seen for winter

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — The electricity supply situation will be the tightest since fiscal 2012 in February next year if the winter is severely cold, the Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry said Tuesday.

The “reserve ratio,” which indicates the margin of electricity supply capacity over demand, will fall below 3%, the minimum level required for stable supply, in January and February in seven regions, including Tokyo, the ministry said.

From July to September, the reserve ratio will be 3% or higher in all regions even if the heat is severe, the ministry said.

But the ratio is estimated at minus 1.7% in January and minus 1.5% in February in the Tokyo region under severely cold weather.

The ratio is forecast to range between 2.2% and 2.5% during the winter period in the remaining six regions.

In the face of the severe outlook, the ministry will take steps to increase electricity supply, including inviting applications for additional supply.