U.S. Pledges Support to Repair Ukrainian Power Grid: United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced plans on Tuesday to provide an additional $53 million in support to Ukraine, specifically to support the country’s efforts to repair its energy infrastructure in the wake of a series of Russian bombing campaigns in the country’s biggest cities.
The announcement was made during a meeting of NATO Allies and members of the G7, with Blinken pledging to help Ukrainian civilians survive the winter.
In remarks to the press ahead of a meeting with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, Blinken reaffirmed the United States’ support for Ukraine and confirmed that Sweden and Finland, both expected to become NATO members in the near future, would also be attending the NATO and G7 discussions.
“We’ll have two soon-to-be new members of the Alliance – Sweden and Finland – with us for these meetings today. That’s important as well,” Blinken said.
“But the fundamental principle that we have and that we brought to the Russian aggression against Ukraine, that we bring to other challenges, including challenges that China poses to our interests, is that we are doing it together; we’re doing it united. .”
Ukraine In Need Of Urgent Support
By the beginning of November, as much as 40% of Ukraine’s total energy infrastructure had either been damaged or destroyed by Russian missile and drone strikes. Combined with the shutting down of the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, which has an energy generation capacity of six gigawatts, Ukraine doesn’t have the power it needs for all remaining civilians in the country.
The damage done to the Ukrainian national grid reportedly exceeds $1.9 billion as of late November.
The crisis has led the Ukrainian government to announce “invincibility” centers that give people access to power, water, and food in regions impacted by Russian missile strikes.
While Ukrainian authorities have often responded to Russian strikes with quick action designed to minimize the impact on Ukrainian civilians’ access to electricity, often local authorities can’t keep up with the scale of the damage and find themselves restoring electricity for only a fraction of consumers.
Kherson Oblast Governor Yaroslav Yanushevych confirmed this week that some household consumers in the center of Kherson city, and in some surrounding areas, have seen their power restored. A local hospital and the city’s railway infrastructure are also now supplied with power – but the same cannot be said for much of the rest of the region.
Following Russia’s bombardment of Kherson as troops withdrew from Kherson city, a majority of the region’s energy infrastructure was impacted and just 40% of consumers in Kherson now have access to power.
Jack Buckby is 19FortyFive’s Breaking News Editor.