It is impossible to predict how heavily Russia will target the Ukrainian energy system, so Ukrainians need to prepare for difficult scenarios, Ukrenergo CEO Volodymyr Kudrytskyy has said on the air of the news telethon.
"This threat depends on the scale and nature of the shelling or attacks against the energy system that the enemy may launch next winter. We cannot know this... Therefore, we must prepare for difficult scenarios. Difficult scenarios mean that there will be a repeat of the attacks we saw last year," Kudrytskyy said.
Answering the question whether we should expect the same blackouts, he noted that "we do not know where missiles or drones can hit", but preparations are underway to protect facilities from future attacks.
"We are preparing by restoring both Ukrenergo's facilities and power plants. The second is the protection of facilities. We are now working on engineering defence... to strengthen these facilities to minimise the consequences of attacks, if they occur. And, of course, we are talking about our air defence forces. The density of air defence has increased compared to October last year, when the attacks against the power grid began," Kudrytskyy said.
Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal earlier said that the upcoming heating season would be difficult. According to the Ministry of Energy, five nuclear units have been repaired. Four more units are under repair. As for thermal power plants, 24 power units (62% of the total) have been repaired or are under repair, and 70% of CHPPs have been repaired.
Deputy Energy Minister Farid Safarov was not encouraging either, saying that the next winter will be no less difficult than the previous one, as Ukraine's energy facilities remain priority targets for Russian missile strikes.