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Siam Cement prepares for energy shortage

World Cement,

The Siam Cement Group (SCG) has announced it is ready to slash its energy usage, as Thailand prepares for a power supply crisis next month.

Thailand imports natural gas from Myanmar’s Yadana field via pipeline, feeding power plants in western Thailand with a combined capacity of 6000 MW. Each year, the pipeline is closed for maintenance – ordinarily during Songkran, or New Year, when natural gas consumption is reduced. However, this year the closure will begin earlier, on 5 April, ahead of the 12 – 15 April holidays. The government is looking into alternative power sources for the duration of the closure – such as increased coal usage – and is urging consumers to turn off electrical appliances from 1 pm – 3 pm for the duration of the shortage, which is anticipated to last until 15 April. While some are using the term ‘energy crisis’, others are not concerned by the potential drop in supply, as the gas supplied by Myanmar represents just a quarter of Thailand’s total supply.

Meanwhile, SCG Chemicals’ VP – Operations, has told press that SCG will cooperate with the government in coping with the supply shortage. The company is confident that, given its existing attention to energy efficiency, it will be able to manage the shortages effectively. Some key measures it plans to take to reduce electricity consumption include rescheduling work and maintenance times and turning off the air conditioning at SCG Chemicals, SCG Cement and SCG Paper. The company claims this should reduce energy consumption by about 20%.

Edited from various sources by Katherine Guenioui.

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