July 19, 2024
A woman in the Ukrainian resort city of Odesa uses a portable generator, which have been in extremely high demand since Russia destroyed half the country’s energy-generating capacity.

Canada has the power (generators) to help beat Russia

Sending generators to Ukraine, which has been crippled by blackouts, would be a win-win for Canadians

Crippling blackouts have resumed across Ukraine after Russia devastated the country’s electrical grid this spring. With energy shortages expected to persist deep into the winter, Canada should step up and supply the Ukrainians with portable generators, especially if this aid is structured in a way that supports Canadian manufacturers.

Since March, Moscow has destroyed half of Ukraine’s energy-generating capacity by bombing thermal power plants, hydroelectric power stations and energy storage facilities. These attacks were made possible by delays in western arms shipments earlier this year, which left Ukrainian air defences so critically low on ammunition that missiles and drones routinely overwhelmed them.

Ukraine’s remaining energy is predominantly supplied by nuclear power plants, which Russia has mostly avoided targeting  —  no one wants another Chernobyl or Fukushima, it seems. But while this protects Ukraine from total de-electrification, nuclear alone cannot meet national demand, even with increased electricity imports from western neighbours.

Since May, power has been rationed across the country through the use of controlled blackouts that last around six to 20 hours a day, depending on the region and week. Critical infrastructure, such as hospitals and train stations, is exempt from these cuts.




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