By Mohammad Ghazal – Jul 06,2015 – Last updated at Jul 07,2015

Electricity theft costs the Kingdom about JD60 million annually (JT file photo)
AMMAN — A campaign started on Monday to raise awareness about dangers of electricity theft and the need to combat the phenomenon, which costs the Kingdom about JD60 million annually.

The four-day campaign, which covers the country’s governorates, seeks to encourage people to ration the use of electricity and highlight the dangers and consequences of electricity theft, Energy and Mineral Resources Regulatory Commission Chief Commissioner Farouq Hiari said in a statement sent to The Jordan Times.

He added that the campaign will cover universities, ministries and public departments in addition to the central areas of Amman, Zarqa and Irbid.

As part of the campaign, about 100,000 brochures will be distributed, and — in collaboration with the ICT Ministry — several bulk messages will be sent to mobile subscribers on the issue, according to Hiari.

“The campaign will highlight penalties imposed on those who steal electricity,” he said.

Current laws in this regard stipulate that any persons involved in stealing electricity are subject to six months to two years in prison and a fine of no less than JD2,000 and no more than JD10,000, or both penalties.

Hiari said the campaign will encourage the public to rely on energy efficient light bulbs and use solar systems for power generation at their houses, which will help reduce pressure on the energy bill.

Jordan imports about 97 per cent of its energy needs.

Last month, Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour said electricity theft and violations must be addressed to reduce the losses incurred and ensure respect of the law.

The premier highlighted the importance of enhancing the ongoing arrangement of assigning law enforcement units to escort inspection teams from electricity distribution companies, whose job is to detect and report any violations against the grid.

About 2-3 per cent of power lost from the electricity system is classified as non-technical loss, which is mainly theft, according to the commission.

Hiari noted that the commission dealt with 3,547 cases of electricity theft over a one-year period and a plan is in the pipeline to install smart meters to put an end to the practice.

Energy saving tips

Indoor lighting

• Don’t leave lights on when no one is in the room.

• Where possible use energy saving compact fluorescent lamps (CFL). These bulbs produce the same amount of light by using 20% of the electricity and they last about 10 times longer.

• Clean your light fixtures regularly.

• If possible, put lamps in corner of rooms where they can reflect light from two wall surfaces instead of one.

• Use dimmable bulbs when possible.

• Save on electricity consumption by utilising daylight through keeping curtains and shutters open during the daytime.

• Do not install more bulbs or light power; always clean bulb covers and chandeliers from accumulated dust; paint walls and ceilings with light colours to preserve brightness.

• Turn off electronics and lights when you leave the house.