By Brian Mwale
ZESCO will soon roll out Smart meters which will allow the utility company to remotely switch off some appliances in households as part of load management.
ZESCO Managing Director Victor Mundende says the project will cost 40-Million United States dollars and will help with load management and sharing of power by the utility company.
He says a Copperbelt meter manufacturing company, El Sewedy, in which ZESCO owns 40 percent undertook a two year pilot project whose results are successful.
Mr. Mundende says the start of the project is only awaiting approval from the Zambia Public Procurement Authority -ZPPA- and will take five years to implement.
He says the project will be easily rolled out especially with the installation of fiber across the country.
And Mr. Mundende has revealed that the current intense load shedding of between 8 to 12 hours is expected to continue until September.
He has told journalists in Lusaka that the anticipated commissioning of the first generator at the 750 mega watts Kafue Gorge Lower Hydro plant in October is expected to reduce the load shedding to between one and four hours.
Mr. Mundende said ZESCO has projected a systematic reduction of load shedding using a graduated system called Weather Induced Power Deficit -WIPOD-19 which ensures a more predictable and consistent load management schedule for customers.
He said ZESCO being responsible of generation, distribution and supply of power has also suffered effects of climate change with about 810 mega watts power deficit while the cold season also increases demand for power for heating.
The ZESCO MD has, however, noted that the company is working round the clock to ensure that the Kafue Gorge Lower Project fully comes on board within the first quarter of next year.