On Thursday, Nicaragua experienced a significant power outage that affected 60% of its territory. The outage was a result of failures in the energy plants in neighboring Costa Rica, which impacted the Central American interconnection system. Salvador Mansell, the president of the state-owned Empresa Nacional de Transmisión Eléctrica (Enatrel), confirmed the extent of the effect, stating that the country was already recovering its energy supply.
According to Mansell, Costa Rica encountered problems with its energy plants, and since Nicaragua is interconnected with the rest of the countries, it naturally experienced an energy issue during that period. The proximity of Nicaragua to Costa Rica played a role in contributing to the power outage. The capital city, Managua, and several other sectors were left without electricity during the outage, which began around noon but was resolved within a couple of hours.
This week, the El Niño weather phenomenon caused a reduction in hydroelectric generation across Central American countries due to lower water levels in reservoirs caused by decreased rainfall. The Regional Operator Entity (EOR), based in San Salvador, issued warnings about the situation. In response to the low rainfall, countries initiated measures to meet their total energy demand by purchasing electricity from the regional market, which operates freely.
Power outages can have significant implications, affecting daily life, businesses, and various sectors of the economy. They serve as a reminder of the importance of reliable and sustainable energy sources and the need for robust infrastructure and contingency plans to handle such situations.
As Nicaragua works on restoring its energy supply and resolves the issues caused by the interconnection system failures, efforts should be made to enhance coordination and cooperation among Central American countries to ensure a stable and secure energy grid. This incident highlights the interconnected nature of our energy systems and the importance of regional collaboration in addressing challenges and maintaining a reliable supply of electricity.
The power outage in Nicaragua, triggered by failures in Costa Rica’s energy plants, caused a significant disruption in the country. However, with swift action and the recovery of the energy supply, the situation is gradually being resolved. The incident underscores the necessity of a resilient and interconnected energy infrastructure, as well as the need for strategic planning to mitigate the impact of such events in the future.