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Mera beamons gas misconceptions

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Fitina Khonje

The Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (Mera) has said misconceptions on liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) are contributing to its low usage in the country.

Mera Public Relations Manager Fitina Khonje said this in Lilongwe on Tuesday during a sensitisation meeting organised for gas retailers.

According to Mera as of last year, only one percent of the population was using gas for cooking.

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Khonje said the misconceptions were exerting unnecessary pressure on firewood, charcoal and electricity.

“The use of gas is safe and we want the public to use more gas in the next three years,” Khonje said.

She said usage of gas in Malawi remains low compared to other countries where LPG is a primary source of energy used in almost all households whether rich or poor.

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One of the retailers Ranos Chinangwa appealed to the government to consider subsidising other LPG-related materials considering their current prices, which are still exorbitant and prohibitive to the poor masses.

“Some LPG materials such as gas cylinders are still very expensive, making it prohibitive to the poor masses whose rate of fuel wood usage is very high contributing greatly to environmental degradation emanating from increased use of charcoal and firewood as energy sources,” he said.

Malawi has been importing about 1.6 million kilogrammes (kg) of gas per year and Mera wants gas consumption to surge to 4.8 million kg by 2024.

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