Untapped renewable energy potential
Darbandikhan faces power shortages despite two dams
DARBANDIKHAN — Residents of the Darbandikhan district, home to two dams including the Kurdistan region’s second-largest, endure power outages with electricity available for only seven to eight hours daily.
For years, the local community has voiced frustration over the inadequate electricity supply, largely attributing their grievances to the inefficient use of the dams’ hydroelectric potential.
Of the two, only the Darbandikhan Dam contributes to power generation, while the Dewana Dam serves exclusively for water storage.
Basim Aziz, manager of the Darbandikhan Dam, told 964media that electricity is currently provided to residents from 5 p.m. to midnight, occasionally dipping to a mere five hours due to shortages.
Aziz pointed out that the Darbandikhan Dam generates about 65 megawatts for approximately five hours daily. This level of production falls short of meeting demand, particularly during the colder, wetter months.
Suleiman Mohammed, District Commissioner of Darbandikhan, explained to 964media the limitations of using generators to bridge the power gap. Continuous 24-hour generator operation is unsustainable in Darbandikhan, with generators only extending power availability for a few additional hours — from 7 to 8:30 a.m., 1:30 to 4 p.m., and for the marketplace, until 1 a.m.