Electricity issues in Venezuela

Venezuelan weekends are now 5 days long! Well, not quite. Venezuela has reduced its work week for government employees to just 2 days, for at least a couple of weeks. This is to reduce electricity consumption. The country is suffering from serious power shortages. The government has announced daily four-hour power cuts around the nation. The shortage is caused by drought problems which has led to low water levels in the country’s rivers and dams. About 70% of the country’s energy comes from hydroelectric power plants (where falling or flowing water is used to generate power). With very low water levels, the hydroelectric plants are not generating enough electricity for the nation.

Venezuela is one of the world’s largest producers and exporters of crude oil. Crude oil is used to generate electricity in many nations around the globe. However, Venezuela sells most of its oil to other countries, and oil is the country’s main export.

Venezuelans are unhappy with their government. Many are protesting and some are signing a petition for the removal of their President Nicolas Maduro (image).

 

Image Credits: Congreso de la República del Perú for Maduro’s image
Sources: http://data.worldbank.org, BBC, https://www.washingtonpost.com