For the first time since 2015, the industrial customers of the capital of the Bekaa will not be getting electricity all 24 hours of the day as Electricité de Zahlé (EDZ) announces that it is rationing power.
“We are experiencing an unprecedented crisis,” said EDZ in a statement.
“We have decided to prioritize the homes and workspaces of our people during this critical period and we have taken the unfortunate decision to cut the power off factory owners and private stations until further notice.”
Founded in the 1920s, and forced to stop during the Civil War, EDZ resumed operation in 2015 and has been providing since then 250,000 inhabitants in all 16 municipalities of the Zahle region with 24/7 electricity for years at prices lower than those of Electricité du Liban (EDL).
EDZ buys subsidized electricity from EDL then manages the distribution and the billing operations.
With EDL completely stopping the supply of electricity to all parts of Lebanon on Friday, and with fuel prices soaring amidst increasing scarcity, EDZ found itself forced to start rationing its power supply.
An inhabitant of Zahle told The961 that the power supplied to street lights has been cut off for at least a week, making it harder to drive.
For years, Zahle, the Bride of the Bekaa, has set an example for all Lebanese cities by supplying 24/7 electricity, which has also ensured a 24/7 water supply, tackling as such two main crises all other regions of Lebanon have been suffering from.
However, with fuel prices continuing to increase, and no hopes of more power supplies by EDL, the situation is changing for Zahle. The future of EDZ does not look promising.
Lebanon’s electricity problem is affecting all sectors in the country, which is already quaking under multiple crises. The vaccine marathons that were scheduled for this weekend had to be canceled due to electricity cuts prompting internet cuts.
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