Russian attacks on Ukraine’s energy facilities are conducted not only by the Russian military but also by Russian energy specialists, Volodymyr Kudrytskyi, chief executive of Ukrenergo, Ukraine’s state-owned power company, told the Financial Times newspaper on Jan. 8.
According to Kudrytskyi, Russian engineers knew Ukraine’s energy grid “like the back of their hands” because it was connected to their country’s system prior to last February’s invasion.
But Ukrainian engineers now better understand the Russian strategy and could take measures “aimed at minimizing the consequences” of the attacks, he added.
Frosty weather has caused a growing shortage of electricity in Ukraine as of Jan. 8, leading Ukrenergo to warn of possible emergency blackouts. Power consumption limits have been implemented across the country to limit the risk of an overload in the system.
Over the past three months, Ukraine’s energy system has suffered significant damage as a result of targeted Russian missile and drone attacks against power infrastructure.
According to Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal, the Russian invaders have damaged about 50% of the Ukrainian energy system. Repairing the large-scale damage done to generation facilities and distribution networks requires significant resources and time, Ukrainian officials have stated.