Ukraine's national energy grid could soon collapse, plunging millions of people into a humanitarian crisis this winter, an aid organization has warned.

In its eighth missile attack in eight weeks, Russia hit infrastructure on Monday causing power outages, as authorities said half of the Kyiv region would be without electricity in the coming days. Overnight on Monday, more missiles hit critical infrastructure near the southern city of Zaporizhzhya, officials said.

With an estimated 50 percent of Ukraine's energy infrastructure damaged due to continuous Russian missile strikes, Mercy Corps has said that the country's "entire national grid could collapse within weeks if the attacks continue."

A woman outside buildings damaged by last week’s missile attack on December 5, 2022 in Vyshhorod, Ukraine. There are fears that strikes on infrastructure could cause a collapse in the Ukraine's energy grid. Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Winter temperatures in Ukraine often range from 27 F to minus 4 F, and the NGO said that the country's cities "will become almost unliveable over the next four months."

"What we fear is that, given the pattern appears and the intensity of the air attacks, and their focus on critical civilian infrastructure, like the power grid, that at some point, if they keep up this pace over the next several weeks, the grid will face a situation of critical mass failure," said Michael Young, the Mercy Corps Ukraine response director.

"By that, we mean facing power outages of not just hours or days, but potentially weeks," he told Newsweek from Kyiv.

He said while the outages condemn millions to a winter of freezing darkness, they also have other significant knock-on effects, stopping industrial facilities from functioning, which worsens unemployment.

Businesses operating on generators during partial blackouts will also have to increase prices to cover their costs, adding to the burden for people trying feed themselves.

Mercy Corps has a cash assistance program that is heavily dependent on a bank system reliant on a functioning energy supply, so that people can withdraw money.

"Everything is interconnected. The ability of hospitals and clinics to keep running, to keep vaccines cool, to keep medicines stored. Food storage, supply chains, all of these depend upon a dependable power supply," he added.

Following Monday's attacks, the head of national electricity provider Ukrenergo, Volodymyr Kudrytskyi, said he had "no doubt" that Russia's military "had consulted with" Russian power engineers before the missiles were fired.

Ukraine's office of the prosecutor general reported on November 16 that Russia had carried out 92 attacks on Ukraine's energy infrastructure in October and November.

Human Rights Watch said on Monday that Russian forces' targeting of energy infrastructure was aimed at provoking "terror among the population in violation of the laws of war."

Senior Ukraine researcher at Human Rights Watch Yulia Gorbunova warned that "conditions will become more life-threatening while Russia seems intent on making life untenable for as many Ukrainian civilians as possible."

Newsweek has contacted Ukrenergo and the Russian foreign ministry for comment.