Electricity in Nangarhar

Jan 11, 2012   //   by Hameed   //   Uncategorized  //  2 Comments

There is very lit­tle elec­tric­i­ty gen­er­at­ed by Darun­ta Dam which is divid­ed between the cor­rupt offi­cials and a few hos­pi­tals and gov­ern­ment offices in Jalalabad.
House­holds in Jalal­abad buy elec­tric­i­ty from these expen­sive com­mu­ni­ty gen­er­a­tors: $1.25/KW. Most fam­i­lies do not use heaters or air con­di­tion­ers or any­thing that use a lot of elec­tric­i­ty to save on bills at the end of the month. One gen­er­a­tor pow­ers about 60 house­holds. These are pri­vate busi­ness­es and there are no reg­u­la­tions from the gov­ern­ment and the busi­ness own­ers can charge peo­ple how­ev­er much they want.

Peo­ple main­ly use it for lights and watch­ing TV. In hot sum­mer of Jalal­abad, there is no way peo­ple can save by not run­ning fans. Peo­ple save up for the three real­ly real­ly hot months of sum­mer when they’re run­ning up the bill. Some peo­ple use anoth­er trick: If there is a gov­ern­ment offi­cial who lives on their neigh­bor­hood and their pow­er cable goes by their house, they would steal their elec­tric­i­ty. It ain’t good if they find out. They have to take chances. The term use for steal­ing elec­tric­i­ty is ‘Changak’ which lit­er­al­ly means ‘secret con­nec­tion’. Some fam­i­lies make a one-time big expense (if they can afford it) and get solar pow­er sys­tem for their household.

Com­mu­ni­ty gen­er­a­tors are more com­mon in rur­al areas of Afghanistan. In some areas where peo­ple do not have cash to pay, they give them wheat, rice or any oth­er crops for the amount of elec­tric­i­ty they’ve used in a cer­tain peri­od of time. Some­times there is a set prices. Every­one for exam­ples pays $20/month. Con­di­tions apply. An exam­ple con­di­tion would be, every cus­tomer should use 25 watts ener­gy effi­cient flu­o­res­cent lights.