Blackouts Throughout Israel

Power plant malfunction causing nationwide power failures; IEC scrambling to fix problem amid heat wave.

Yedidya Ben-Or ,

Electric company worker
Electric company worker
Flash 90

Due to a malfunction in one of Israel's main power stations, there will be blackouts in multiple areas of Israel on Sunday, the Israel Electric Company (IEC) announced. 

"The IEC is working to repair the malfunction as soon as possible," it said in a statement. 

Blackouts are due to last several minutes, it said. 

Israel currently faces the third heat wave of the summer, driving up the demand for electricity.

Concerns are high about Israel reaching a "red line" for electricity, as it nearly did in July 2012. Then, Israelis used some 11,880 MW of electricity - as the State of Israel's electricity reserves veered dangerously close to zero.

At the time, however, Israel was supplying natural gas to Egypt due to repeated pipeline explosions in the Sinai desert; today, Israel has a wealth of natural gas resources and a standing reserve of about 800MW. 

In the event Israel depletes its reserves, the IEC has said it will institute rolling blackouts, one hour per community.