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By: Mpho Shelile  

Climate change is a global phenomenon that is causing widespread environmental changes, with far-reaching consequences for various sectors. One critical area significantly affected is the electricity supply infrastructure.

LEC public relations officer, Mr. Tšepang Lelia indicated that electricity has become an indispensable part of our daily lives, powering our homes, businesses, and gadgets. However, behind the convenience lies a silent danger that often goes unnoticed.

Increasing frequency of extreme weather events raises concerns for power grid resilience. Stating that one of the most direct impacts of climate change on electrical supply is the increasing frequency and intensity of extreme weather condition; Hurricanes, typhoons, floods, and storms can damage power lines, roads, and other critical infrastructure, leading to widespread outages. The costs of repairing and upgrading these systems in the face of more frequent extreme events pose a significant challenge for utilities and governments.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

Mr. Lelia further stated that damages such as electrical poles falling down and power lines on the ground are but a few he can mention regarding these extreme weather conditions. Many places in the Quthing district were terribly affected and repairing such damage especially in places that are in the outskirts will require some time since some of them are located where cars cannot even reach due to how flooded the places are. There is also a high risk of trees which are tall and reach power lines, so we have approached chiefs in areas like Roma to inquire about the possible of cutting them down so that we get a smooth flow of electricity,” he said.

He also stated that the minute a tree touches a power line, it becomes part of the circuit and touching such a tree may result in people getting exceedingly injured. Adding that a places like Ha Abia has had heavy rains, and a lot of their LEC equipment has been affected so it will take time to fix. He then pleaded with Basotho to pardon them since it is not their fault that they cannot fix their problems on time, as it is impossible to work while it rains but they are doing the best they can to address such problems in a matter of urgency.

When addressing the incident that occurred in Peka, Mr. Lelia stressed that it is very unfortunate that some people have made it their hobby to purposely steal power lines, adding that in Peka nothing was stolen but somebody found it fun to cut down electrical supply. Leribe and Mokhotlong were also affected by that act and some big companies, Mines and small businesses were affected. “I would advise Basotho to take extra care of electrical equipment, to practice safe agriculture and stop burning their fields since some of the equipment becomes collateral in the process and burns down”, he said.

“Basotho must stop taking matters into their own hands regarding electricity, we may delay in reaching out to help but that does not mean we are not doing anything. In most cases our reason for the delay is because ever since climate change, lots of places are running out of electricity and going from house to house fixing the problem takes time,” indicated Lelia.

Adding that he strongly believes that there should be teams out there that are trained to assist the country to adapt to the impacts of climate change, while others promote, albeit to a limited extent the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Stating that it might look like there are no solutions in trying to help change the climate, however he believes that with the right knowledge instilled in Basotho on how some of their actions have let to these bad climate change these heavy rains may stop. Regional integration of climate change and sustainable development is a field gaining attention as a lead mechanism for dealing with developing country climate change adaptation and mitigation issues.

Furthermore he stated that many individuals attempt to perform electrical repairs or installations without the necessary knowledge and skills which has led to more of their property being destroyed and many life’s compromised. Adding that this can lead to dangerous consequences, including electrical malfunctions, fires, and injuries. It is essential to hire a qualified electrician for any electrical work to ensure it is done safely and in compliance with local codes. He advised Basotho to consider their safety since electricity is dangerous and requires professional electricians in dealing with such crisis.

Lelia concluded by stating that while electricity has revolutionized our lives, it is crucial to recognize and respect its potential dangers. By staying informed, practicing electrical safety, and seeking professional help when needed, we can mitigate the risks associated with this powerful energy source. “Remember, the key to preventing accidents is awareness and responsible usage, this is where you as the media come in to raise awareness on such news. Stay safe, stay informed, and let’s all take steps to protect ourselves and our communities from the hidden dangers of electricity.”

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