Ukrainians are bracing for a winter with little or no power in several areas including the capital where temperatures have already dropped below freezing as relentless Russian strikes crippled the country’s energy capacity.
President Volodymyr Zelenskyy urged people to conserve power, particularly in hard-hit areas such as Kyiv, Vinnytsia in the southwest, Sumy in the north and Odesa on the Black Sea.
Moscow’s response to military setbacks in recent weeks has included a barrage of missile strikes against power facilities, and the Ukrainian president said half of the country’s power capacity had been knocked out by Russian rockets.
“The systematic damage to our energy system from strikes by the Russian terrorists is so considerable that all our people and businesses should be mindful and redistribute their consumption throughout the day,” he said in his nightly video address. “Try to limit your personal consumption of electricity.”
#Kyiv during the blackout. pic.twitter.com/TWvMVg5PM1
— NEXTA (@nexta_tv) November 17, 2022
Millions of Ukrainians are most likely to live with blackouts – a daily occurrence across the country – at least until the end of March, Sergey Kovalenko, the head of YASNO, which provides energy for Kyiv, said on Monday, adding that workers are rushing to complete repairs before the winter cold arrives.
“Stock up on warm clothes, blankets, think about options that will help you wait a long outage,” he said.”It is better to do it now than to be miserable.”
Meanwhile, citizens in the recently liberated southern city of Kherson, where Kyiv says Russian troops destroyed critical infrastructure before leaving earlier this month, can apply to be relocated to areas where security and heating issues are less acute.
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