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Sat. May 25th, 2024

Colombia has taken the unprecedented step of suspending its electricity exports to neighboring Ecuador, citing the dire conditions of its hydropower plants amidst a relentless drought. The announcement came from the government late Monday, underscoring the severity of the situation.

Attributed to the El Niño climate phenomenon, the prolonged dry spell has pushed Colombia’s hydropower plants perilously close to critical levels. Consequently, the nation has been compelled to implement water rationing measures, impacting approximately 10 million residents in the capital city of Bogota and its surrounding areas.

In a statement to the press, Mining and Energy Minister Andres Camacho emphasized the gravity of the circumstances, affirming that Colombia, heavily reliant on hydroelectric sources for its energy needs, is employing every available measure to avert potential energy shortages.

Highlighting the immediate action taken, Camacho elucidated that since Easter week, Colombia has progressively curtailed its electricity exports to Ecuador. Presently, all electricity exports to the neighboring nation have been suspended until further notice, reflecting the urgency of the situation.

The XM national electricity operator reported that water reservoirs currently stand at a mere 29.8 percent of their capacity, a level perilously close to the critical threshold of 27 percent. Minister Camacho remains cautiously optimistic, citing forecasts of imminent rainfall as a potential respite from the drought and the intense temperatures exacerbating the situation.

Moreover, Camacho underscored the broader ramifications of the drought, referencing the hundreds of forest fires that have ravaged Colombia earlier in the year. As the nation braces for the anticipated rains, stakeholders across sectors are closely monitoring developments, hoping for a swift reversal of the prevailing dry spell.

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