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Monday, Apr 22, 2024

HK Electric should use reward from restoring power timeously to give rebate to consumers, says govt

HK Electric should use reward from restoring power timeously to give rebate to consumers, says govt

Environment chief Tse Chin-wan said the government was dissatisfied with Hong Kong Electric’s performance over the 48-minute power outage on Hong Kong Island and suggested the firm offer rebates to citizens with incentives earned for restoring power timeously.
At a briefing late last night (Thu), HKE said the blackout, affecting thousands of residents in Southern, Eastern, Wan Chai, Pok Fu Lam, and Central districts, occurred at 12.49 am on Wednesday. It was caused by human error due to a mistakenly connected “backup” cable that had not been used for over a decade.

The power was fully restored at 1.37 am.

Yet, HKE is entitled to incentive awards even when it is at fault for the outage as long as it restores electricity within a certain period.

In this case, the power firm can earn a 0.015 percent of earning-based reward for restoring the power in less than 65 minutes, according to the Scheme of Control Agreements.

On Friday, Tse, the Secretary for Environment and Ecology, said the government was dissatisfied with HKE’s performance and has requested the company submit a report in four weeks.

He continued that it is still unknown if HKE will receive the incentive reward under the scheme but noted he had advised HKE to rebate citizens using the reward should they receive one.

He believed HKE would shoulder its corporate social responsibility and consider his suggestion.

Tse added this incident reflected that the incentive reward scheme was not appropriate.

He also said authorities would discuss with power firms and develop an improved solution during the interim review so that factors like cause of incident and repair performance will also be considered.
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