Turkish Ships Could Provide Extra Power for Battered Ukraine – Russia’s tactic of directing missile and drone strikes at Ukraine’s critical energy infrastructure may well have caused headaches for Kyiv and for millions of Ukrainians still living in the country.
Still, floating power plants could soon undo all the damage done by Russia.
State-owned electric company JSC Energy Company signed a memorandum of understanding on Thursday confirming that Karpowership, a Turkish operator of floating power plants, is preparing to help fill gaps in Ukraine’s electricity grid. Karpowership could theoretically deploy the ships to the south coast of Ukraine – assuming that Russian boats in the Black Sea will let them through – and provide as much as 500 megawatts of electricity from each generator.
The memorandum revealed that the floating power plants could be docked near the coast, though stated that they may be closer to Moldova or Romania than to Ukraine. Once they are within a close enough vicinity, the ships will generate energy using biodiesel, fuel oil, or liquefied natural gas. The plants would connect to Ukraine’s national grid via cables that can be laid underwater.
Karpowership confirmed the tentative deal, stating on Thursday that Karpowership is “delighted to work with ECU to ease Ukraine’s power crisis.”
The Turkish company added that the “powerships” are a “fast, reliable, and flexible solution to the nation’s electricity shortages, and we are ready to support Ukraine in getting the energy it needs as soon as possible.”
Ukraine Loses Almost Half Of National Power System
By January 13, Ukraine had lost more than 40% of its national power system to missile and drone strikes. The impact is not greatly offset by the reduction in energy consumption caused by the outflowing of Ukrainian refugees, either. Even with energy consumption dropping by 35%, Ukraine cannot currently meet around 30% of domestic electricity demand – meaning that Karpowership’s floating power plants could have a dramatic impact.
A study also found that a single Russian missile attack in November destroyed 55% of Ukraine’s electricity-generating capacity in a day.
“The scale of destruction is colossal,” the CEO of Ukrenergo, Ukraine’s electricity transmission system operator said.
“And in Ukraine, there is a power generation deficit. We cannot generate as much energy as consumers can use.”
Not only will the ships help meet that demand, but their presence could theoretically force Russia to adopt new tactics. When damaging critical energy infrastructure no longer has the impact it used to, Russia may be forced to look for new ways to distract and delay Ukrainian forces.
Jack Buckby is 19FortyFive’s Breaking News Editor. He is a British author, counter-extremism researcher, and journalist based in New York. Reporting on the U.K., Europe, and the U.S., he works to analyze and understand left-wing and right-wing radicalization, and reports on Western governments’ approaches to the pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and propose pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.