Iran has started importing limited supplies of electricity from neighboring Turkmenistan amid increased consumption of power caused by rising temperatures and increased crypto mining.
A spokesman of Iran’s state electricity company Tavanir said on Wednesday that Turkmenistan would supply 140 megawatts of power to Iran’s northeastern Khorasan Province through a newly-established link between the Central Asian country and the border region of Sarakhs.
Mostafa Rajabi suggested that supplies could increase as he said that Iran and Turkmenistan were implementing a first phase of their agreement on electricity transfer.
“This amount can respond to a part of demand (for electricity) in Khorasan region,” said Rajabi.
The spokesman said, however, that power consumption in Iran would reach an annual peak of 58,000 megawatt hours (MWh) on Wednesday as temperatures keep rising in the country.
A local Energy Ministry official in Khorasan Province said that Turkmenistan had already started supplying 130 MW of electricity to the power grid in the region.
Mohammad Alayi said supplies would continue until the end of summer season in late September, adding that imports from Turkmenistan are meant to prevent any power cuts in eastern regions in Iran.
Iranian Energy Ministry officials have indicated that power plants in the country have been working at almost full capacity in recent weeks to respond to a growing demand for power. Authorities have blamed brief blackouts in large cities on a surge in electricity use by unlicensed cryptocurrency miners.
Government estimates suggest crypto mining has been responsible for 2,300 MW of consumption in recent weeks with more than 2,000 MW of that figure being supplies that go to unlicensed miners.