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Dhaka Tribune

Power cuts melt Gaza's ice cream stocks as heatwave boosts demand

Gaza manages to provide only 180MW of electricity in regard to required 500MW

Update : 28 Aug 2022, 07:29 PM

Lengthy loadshedding in the Gaza Strip have melted stocks of ice cream, forcing shops to stop selling it just when a heatwave has boosted demand.

With summer temperatures hitting 34°C, ice cream is a popular and relatively inexpensive treat in Gaza, home to 2.3 million people squeezed into a narrow coastal strip between Israel and Egypt.

But owners of several groceries said they had to stop selling it even as a particularly hot summer has increased demand.

"Half of the ice cream melted. What should we do with it? Losses, losses," supermarket owner, Fouad Awadallah told Reuters.

Gaza would normally require around 500MW of power per day during the summer months of June, July, and August, local officials said. It receives 120MW from Israel while the enclave's single power plant supplies another 60MV.

The shortfall means residents have only around 11 hours of electricity per day and even that is intermittent.

At the Kazem Ice Cream shop, one of the territory's best known, the owner Mohammad Abu Shaban, said he had to use expensive generators to keep the business going.

He said: "I can't switch off the generators even for a minute once the electricity goes."

Saly Abu El-Haj(25), traveled 13 kilometres from her Nusseirat refugee camp for a taste of Kazem's ice cream in Gaza City centre because other shops had stopped selling it.

She said: "If you want to buy something cheaper from a supermarket, you won't find it as owners are afraid ice cream would be wasted once the electricity is off."

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