Pakistan -Living Under the Black-Outs Because of Insufficient Electricity

Pakistan is under black-outs due not just because of terrorism, corruption, and inflation. No, mostly it's because of electricity and gas shortages and this in long run affects every sector of life which you can imagine. Natural disasters like The Great Earthquake and Flood-2010 have negatively affected our growth rate and a number of energy plants were partially or completely damaged.

About 1.4 billion people today lack access to electricity, and current trends indicate that this will not change significantly by 2030. It is also estimated that 2.5 billion people will still use traditional biomass for cooking in 2030, with related health effects leading to 1.5 million premature deaths per year, mostly among women and children.

The blame game about electricity and gas shortages is on full throttle here . Some blame the current Pakistani leadership thinking it has only happened recently. Today, Pakistan is in a severe energy crisis

Figure 1: Electricity Status of Pakistan

Unfortunately and shamefully i we are much more dependent on foreign aid even though Pakistan blessed with all natural resources for power generation. We could produce 50,000 MGW Electric Power for 800 years from just one reserve of Coal. From Water if we utilize we could produce same amount, and from the coastal area of just 180 KM on Province of Sind side we could produce 10,000 MGW from the wind for a life-time.

Pakistan has almost 3,000 MW power generation potential in the sugar industry through biogas, but it is hardly producing some 700MW. A research Study conducted by the University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, suggests that the country's energy demand is expected to increase three fold by 2050, but the supply position is not inspiring in any way. In such alarming conditions the renewable and sustainable energy resources are the best substitute to the conventional fuels and energy sources.

Due to gas and electricity load shedding many people have been living hand to mouth. In Faisalabad almost three lakh (0.3 million) people have lost their jobs due to industry closures. The same is happening to other big industrial cities like Gujranwala, Multan, Lahore, and Rawalpindi. The industries are mainly having to close because of 12 to 15 hours of electricity load-shedding and the fact that there is no proper supply of gas to the industrial sector has worsened the situation.

The industrial output and commercial activity of a country is gauged by the per capita consumption of electricity. We are one of the lowest consumers of power in Asia. Per capita energy consumption of Pakistan is only 14 MBTU compared to 80 in China, 110 in Malaysia and 115 in Iran.

Now the current Pakistani government is looking to hydro. A number of dams like Bhasha (4,500MW), Munda (740MW), Kurram Tangi (83MW) and Akhori Dam (600MW) are already announced by the current government while other dams like Bunji (7,100MW), Dasu (4,320MW) and Golen Gol (106MW) have a massive potential of producing hydroelectric generation.

The traditional energy sources are no longer abundant as they are rapidly being depleted due to increase in population and pace of development. Pakistan is very fortunate in the sense that renewable sources of energy can meet its entire energy requirement.

Pakistan simply needs some team to work for just Pakistan. Pakistan must be protected from corrupt and incompetent persons, ministers and even Presidents.

We hope those in power and those with influence, will finally pay heed and stop artificially quelling Pakistan's natural growth rate; a number which will approach or exceed 10 per cent with even the smallest of strategic investments in promising sectors like agriculture.