Sabah can expect more stable power supply within 2 years

Sabah is suffering from a high rate of power disruption, four times more than in the peninsula, due to weak or damaged power lines. (Bernama pic)

KOTA KINABALU: The federal government will be looking at ways to improve and strengthen the power line distribution and transmission in Sabah to reduce power disruptions and leakages in the state.

Speaking after a briefing with Chief Minister Shafie Apdal here today, Energy, Green Technology, Science, Climate Change and Environment Minister Yeo Bee Yin said Sabah is generating enough power supply and has a 32% reserve margin — the same as in the peninsula.

“It means Sabah has no problem in power generation. The problem is in the distribution and transmission of this power to the consumers and businesses.

“If these two are properly addressed, then the quality of power supply in Sabah should match the peninsula,” she said.

Yeo said currently Sabah is suffering from a high rate of power disruption, at least four times more than in the peninsula. This means the power lines in Sabah are weak or damaged in many places.

For this reason, she said the federal government would be carrying out several projects to repair the power lines.

She expects Sabah to reduce its power disruption rate from more than 200 minutes now to about 100 minutes by 2021.

Meanwhile, Shafie said the state government had not rejected the proposal to build coal-powered plants to solve the power supply issue in the east coast.

“The Bakun Dam project, when it was proposed, also received objections from NGOs and politicians but now, Sarawak is enjoying sustainable power supply with a low disruption rate at a very low price.

“During my visit to Sarawak, Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg even offered to sell us the electricity although the cost of connecting the power lines will be huge.

“We are looking at many options though.

“There are many proposals, including building dams and gas, not just coal. I believe we can decide on the matter before the year ends,” he said.