Water and electricity rationing is daily happening in Santo Domingo

Residents of the Dominican Republic are experiencing daily rationing of both electricity and water, the former due to financial deficits and the latter due to the drought that is affecting the whole country.

However they are both related as the lack of rain has led to a lack of water in the dams that feed the hydroelectric power stations, which provide the cheapest form of electricity.

However they are both related as the lack of rain has led to a lack of water in the dams that feed the hydroelectric power stations, which provide the cheapest form of electricity.

At present 5.4% of the energy comes from hydroelectricity, 31.3% natural gas 31.7% fuel oil, 17.2 % coal and 13.5% self-generated by customers.

As the levels of hydroelectricity fall then the distribution companies need to purchase other more expensive forms of energy, not paid for by the consumers but by the government subsidy. In addition around 33% of the energy purchased by the distribution companies is lost in fraudulent hook ups and technical problems.

Hence at present, the distribution companies are reducing the amount of energy they supply to the population in order to lose less money from those who use it and don’t pay and also to buy less from the suppliers.

Currently consumers in ‘A’ circuits, who should have 24 hour power, are enduring blackouts up to six hours a day, and those in ‘D’ circuits are having 10 hour blackouts per day.

The second form of rationing at the moment is water. In Greater Santo Domingo, the Santo Domingo Aqueducts and Sewers Corporation (CAASD) has reduced supplies by 75% due to the drought. Even the light rain over the last few days is not sufficient to allow the services to improve and CAASD have announced they are arresting people who are using water to wash vehicles, which is not permitted at the moment due to the water shortage.

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