Thursday, 16 June 2011

Power Report

It's starting to heat up here, low-to-mid 20s now but into the high-20s next week. July and August can get up to the high-30s and well humid so with all the air-con that homes, businesses, schools, stations, hospitals, shops, bars, restaurants, host-bars, maid-cafes and S&M bars crank up, summer is always a high electricity-usage time of year.

Japan is currently running 19 of the 54 nucelar reactors that were in operation before the earthquake. Some have been shut down for short term maintenance upgrades, some longer-term and of course the notable meltdown/explosion... so power ain't as easy to come by as it used to be.

I couldn't get to the demo in Shibuya last Saturday but the anti-nuclear rallies in Tokyo are getting bigger with thousands turning up trying to drive a new focus on renewable energies which has to be a good thing.

In the meantime, I've noticed these power-usage graphics appearing at the end of the news. After the weather and between the UV index and the clothes-drying forecast.
This one shows Tokyo's total power generating capcity of 43 million kW and the expected power usage for the day. I took this yesterday on June 15th when they expected the peak usage to be 80% at 2pm. Once it gets to around 90% they start to plan scheduled blackouts to try and manage the demand.

Yahoo Japan's home page has had something similar since the earthquake showing the real-time actual power usage. The pic above was from March 28 when we were in the middle of the rolling blackouts and at 92%. There seems to be another 4.5 million kW available now... but doubt it'll be enough.

I'm not sure if the Ice Bar Tokyo in Ginza will, or should, keep going through the summer. 40 degrees C outside, most of Japan facing power cuts and these guys still want to "magically transport you to the arctic"!  Good to see these trendsetters have got their finger on the pulse of public opinion. 

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