Aug 06 - 12, 2007

There are different natural sources for generating energy in a country. Such sources are thermal, Oil, gas, hydel, coal, solar and wind energy. According to reliable estimates, the total generation capacity of energy in Pakistan currently stands at 20,184 MW, while total demand is calculated at 21,000 MW and to reach 28,081MW by 2010. It seems that demand of energy is rising by 8% per year. Experts had warned last year that the country may be facing a shortage of about 1000 MW by 2007, which may rise to 5000 MW by 2010 and 10,000 MW by 2020. This phenomenon basically, forces the authority into load shedding on a large scale in the years to come. The per capita consumption of energy in Pakistan is only 14 MBtu. It is as high as 165 MBtu in UK., 92 MBtu in Malaysia, 34 MBtu in China, 18 mbtu in India etc. Similarly, the consumption of energy by human being in kilowatts hour are: USA-11,753, Japan-6,165, Singapore-4,699, Malaysia-1,145, Iran-724, Thailand-635, China-448, India-380 and Pakistan-340. It is an established fact that the per capita energy consumption reflects the industrial advancement of a country and the above energy consumption figures clearly indicate the level of development in these countries.

The energy sector in Pakistan comprises of hydel power, oil, gas, petroleum, coal and nuclear. The total energy supplies measured in terms of tons of oil equivalent (toe) stood at 50 million toe in 2003-04. The primary energy supplies have been rising steadily over the last several years. It was 45,2 million toe in 2001-02, increased by 4.4 per cent in 2002-03 and further grew by 8 per cent in 2003-04 to stand at 50.8 million toe. The share of each commercial energy source during 2003-04 was recorded as: natural gas 49.7%, oil 29.9%, coal 6.5%, hydro electricity 12.7%, nuclear energy 0.8% and LPG 0.4%. The average oil production was about 61,817 barrels per day, while natural gas production was 3,295 million cubic feet per day in 2003-04.

According to an official figure , the household sector has been the largest consumer of energy accounting for 44.2 per cent of the total energy consumption followed by the industrial sector 34.4 per cent, the agriculture sector 14.3 per cent , other government sectors 7.4 per cent, the commercial sector 5.5 per cent and street lights 0.7 per cent. The total installed capacity of energy generation in recent year, remaining 20,184 MW. Wpada, the KESC, the KANUPP, the Chashma Nuclear power plant are the four main public sector organizations involved in energy power generation, transmission, and distribution of the electricity in the country. The independent power projects are also involved in power generation.

The total installed capacity of Wpada was 11,363 Mw which accounts for 58 per cent of the total capacity. Of this, hydel accounts for 56.9 per cent or 6,463 MW and the thermal accounts for 43.1 per cent or 4900 MW. The total installed capacity of IPPs is 5,859 MW (30.1 per cent), The KESC 1,758 MW (9 per cent), and nuclear power is 462 MW or 2.4 per cent.

The government is promoting the use of compressed natural gas (CNG) in a big way to reduce the pollution level being caused by vehicles using motor gasoline and to improve the ambient air quality. Presently 900CNG stations are operational in the country while 200 are under construction. By March 2006, about 700,000 vehicles were converted to CNG as compared to 450,000 vehicles during the same period last year, showing an increase of 56 per cent. With these developments, Pakistan has become the leading country in Asia and the third largest user of CNG in the world after Argentina and Brazil.

Exploration and utilization of alternate sources of energy has also stared in the country. Due to its ideal geographic location, Pakistan is blessed with unlimited natural resources, plenty of sunshine throughout the year and includes a massive wind energy corridor in South. The velocity of wind in some of the coastal areas is strong enough to run turbines and generate power. Electricity demand is increasing at national level at the rate of about 1,000 MW per year ,and projected a total demand that stands at 21,500 by the year 2010 and 36,358 MW by 2025. Pakistan is now faced with a most serious energy shortfall. The acute shortage of electricity has resulted in load shedding during the current summer season, costing the economy millions of rupees.

The continuous power shortage is creating hurdles in the current pace of economic growth of the country. The gap between demand and supply of power and interrupted supply of power to industrial sector is retarding the country exports. While following the traditional power resources one should look at the other alternate energy sources. There are other alternative renewable energy sources such as wind and solar energy. We must exploit these means to overcome the energy shortage. Pakistan has abundant energy resources, which needs to be harnessed through an institutionalized strategy for optimum utilization. Pakistan aims at its development requirements keeping in view the institutional trends in the energy sector and availability of resources. The government has set out an action plan to achieve exploration and maximum utilization of indigenous resources like oil, gas and coal and alternative sources like solar and wind energy. Pakistan government is putting greater emphasis on renewable energy and has set a target of 19% renewable energy of 2710 MW in the country's energy mix by 2015. Pakistan , like other developing countries of the world is facing a serious challenge of energy deficit. Renewable energy resources can play an important role in bridging this deficit. More importantly, renewable energy can take electricity to remote rural areas, where it is needed most.

Wind and solar energy are producing electricity to 100 megawatts with the collaboration of Canada since 2006. The govt. main focus is to provide cheaper electricity to the people of remote villages through wind and solar generating projects of these areas and 500-600 MW power energy capacity will be installed by 200. Germany, Holland and China plan to invest in Pakistan in wind energy projects foe a total capacity of about 1,000 MW. China has already produced and installed 14 wind power turbines of 30 & 500 watts capacity in coastal areas of Sindh and Balochistan .The govt. of Pakistan has planned to set up wind energy projects through the private sector to generate 700 megawatts by 2010, 1,700 megawatts by 2015 and 9,700 megawatts by 2030.

Wind energy is an ideal renewable energy because it is a pollution-free, infinitely sustainable form of energy, it dose not require fuel and also is extremely green. It does not create greenhouse gases and not produce toxic or radioactive waste. Pakistan lies in the region trade winds, which gives it a competitive edge to utilize the priceless resource to overcome the problem or energy shortage. The areas suitable in Karachi are Hawkes Bay and National Highway for installing both solar and wind energy plants to produce electricity.

The Sun, the only main source of light in this world is a ball of hot gases. By weight, it is 90 per cent hydrogen, 8 per cent helium, 1.5 per cent carbon, nitrogen and oxygen and 0.5 per cent all other elements. The Sun temperature is 6000oC(10,000oF) at the surface and 13,000,000oC (27,000,000oF) at the centre. The average distance from the earth to the sun is 93,000,000 miles. It takes light eight minutes and eighteen second to travel from the sun to the earth. The diameter of the sun is 870,000 miles (1,393, 000 kilometers), 100 times larger than the earth. Its volume is big enough to hold 1.4 million earths inside it. The sun is a big atomic furnace that works by converting hydrogen into helium. The sun contributes about 99.86 per cent of the total mass of the entire solar system. The sun energy output is estimated to be 386 billion megawatts. In 15 minutes, sunlight generates energy as all forms of sources on the earth generate energy in a whole year. The sun has been producing energy for million of years.

Solar energy can be converted directly or indirectly into solar forms of energy such as heat and electricity. Solar energy is any form of energy radiated by the sun including light, radio waves and X-rays, although the term usually refers to the visible light of the sun. Solar energy is needed by green plants for the process of photosynthesis, which is the ultimate source of all foods. The energy in fossil fuels (e.g. coal and oil) and other organic fuels (wood) is derived from solar energy. Difficulties with these fuels have led to the invention of devices that directly convert solar energy into usable forms of energy, such as electricity. Solar energy is used for heating water for domestic use, space heating and buildings, drying agricultural outputs and generating electrical energy Electricity can be produce directly from solar energy photovoltaic devices or directly from steam generation using solar thermal collections to heat different things.

Solar energy is energy that comes from the sun. Every day the sun radiates or sends out an enormous amount of energy. The energy comes from the sun itself. Like other stars, the sun is a big gas ball made up mostly of hydrogen and helium. The sun generates energy in its core in a process called nuclear fusion. About 15% of the sun's energy that hits the earth is reflected back into space. Another 30% is used to evaporate water, which lifted into atmosphere, produces rainfall. Solar energy also is absorbed by plants, the lands and the oceans. The rest could be used to supply our everyday needs. Today people use solar energy to heat buildings and water and to generate electricity and to evaporate the sea water for making salts. In Pakistan the sun gives bright light from March to October every year, therefore devices may be made to capture sunlight for making energy in the country.