Private power plants connect to national grid to help boost summer reserve

Dorad private power station in Ashkelon connected to national grid; expected to keep reserve between 5% and 8%.

electricity line old370 (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
electricity line old370
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
With the aim of ensuring a reliable power supply during the hottest summer months, turbines from the new private power station Dorad were connected to the national grid on Friday.
The move will prevent a situation where the electricity reserve yet again becomes critically low.
Friday’s connection occurred within 24 hours of the government signaling its approval, and over the course of this week, the station will begin to contribute to the country’s electricity supply, the IEC said.
Dorad, located in Ashkelon, is the second independent plant to begin supplying electricity to the national grid, trailing only OPC Rotem, which came online about three weeks ago.
“Israel Electric Corporation arranged the entry of private producers and their connection to the network, with an emphasis on preparedness for the summer, in order to meet consumption demands and provide quality service to customers,” said Eli Glickman, the CEO of IEC.
By the end of the year, the Dorad plant will be operating at its full, 840-megawatt capacity – making it the largest private power provider in Israel.
OPC Rotem, located near Dimona, has a capacity of about 440 megawatts. By the summer of 2015, an even larger independent power station, the 870-megawatt Dalia Power Energies project in the Shfela, will also come online and will be selling the largest amount of electricity to the IEC, according to its developers.
All of these power stations operate on natural gas.
An electricity line connects Dorad to the national grid through a transfer junction that makes use of the existing connections at the IEC’s Rottenberg and Gan Sorek power stations, the IEC explained.
Last summer, the peak electricity demand occurred on July 19 at 11,920 megawatts, and the entire summer there was a reserve of between one percent and 3%.
Without the additional supplies from the private power stations, the reserve figures would have likely remained the same this summer, Glickman explained at an April press conference. With the introduction of these facilities, the reserve could rise 5- 8%, he predicted.
IEC chairman Yiftah Ran-Tal welcomed Dorad becoming operational, crediting Energy and Water Minister Silvan Shalom with leading the effort toward “preventing a problematic reserve in the summer.”
Stressing the importance of maintaining “a reliable electricity supply and an intact power reserve,” Ran-Tal thanked the minister as well as the employees of both the IEC and Dorad for implementing the connection so efficiently.