WIND POWER

S.KAMAL HAYDER KAZMI,
(feedback@pgeconomist.com)
Research Analyst
, PAGE
Nov 29 - Dec 5, 2010

Wind power is fast becoming a popular means of electricity generation all over the world. The resource potential is large with many countries having wind regimes that could serve as a significant energy source. Ambitious goals for wind power development have been set by many countries.

Rapid growth of wind power since the 1990s has led to notable market shares in some electricity markets. This growth is concentrated in a few countries with effective research, development and demonstration (RD&D) programmes and with policies that support its diffusion into the market place. The speed and depth of its penetration in those electricity markets has amplified the need to address grid integration concerns, so as not to impede the further penetration of wind power.

In recent years, existing international collaborative research efforts have expanded their focus to include grid integration of wind power and new consortia have been formed to pool knowledge and resources. Effective results are of benefit to the few countries that already have a significant amount of wind in their electricity supply fuel mix, as well as to the potential large markets worldwide.

Estimates of the global wind resource potential are large and geographically broad. The total technically recoverable resource is estimated to be 53,000 Terawatt hours (TWh). To put this into context, in 2002 world electricity generation was 16,054 TWh. The IEA has estimated that by 2020 global electricity demand will be 25,578 TWh.

Pakistan is building wind power plants in Jhimpir, Gharo, Keti Bandar, and Bin Qasim in Sindh. The government of Pakistan decided to develop wind power energy sources due to problems supplying energy to the southern coastal regions of Sindh and Balochistan. The project was undertaken with assistance from the government of China. Wind energy is sustainable in the coastal areas of Pakistan along with Swat in the north amongst other areas. Wind turbines for homes are also available that can produce energy where sustained speed is even lower.

In October 2008, a Turkish company was reportedly close to completing the first windmill in Pakistan. The Jhimpir wind power plant five wind turbines in Jhimpir, 70 km from Karachi, are being developed by Zorlu Enerji Pakistan, the local subsidiary of a Turkish company. Total cost of the project is $110 million.

Zorlu Enerji is reported to have completed five wind turbines in Jhimpir, each capable of producing 1.2 MW of electricity. Though initially 6MW of electricity will be produced by the company, the project will be expanded to 50MW in the next few years.

Recently, Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) has issued four letters of intent (LOI) for wind power projects, three for 50 MW and one for 2.4 MW. AEDB is currently facilitating twenty projects having a capacity of 50 MW each, which are at different stages of development. One IPP has signed a contract with international turbine manufacturer for the supply of equipment for their project. One company has installed six MW in the first phase of their 50 MW project. Feasibility studies for 50 MW wind power projects each have been completed by two IPPs taking the total to 14 completed feasibility studies.

During the period July-March 2009-10, Nepra processed ten applications for the grant of generation licenses, including thermal and hydropower plants with a cumulative capacity of 311.4 MW. In addition to these thermal and hydropower projects, cases/applications of five wind energy projects with a cumulative capacity of 200 MW for grant of generation licenses were also processed.

Pakistan is currently facing a power shortage that is caused not only by poor vision and planning but also factors of moral depravity amongst the ruling elite. Pakistan has enough power plants to produce energy for the entire country. The capacity more or less is there, with the IPPs and the so called "rental power" stations. But, the exorbitant amount of fuel costs that go with it to light up the entire country is non-sustainable.

CONCLUSION

Pakistan has a huge amount of coal reserves in the Thar desert area which we can also exploit till the time alternative sources of energy become prevalent in Pakistan. Pakistan can utilise its own sources of energy and become a net energy exporting nation by minimising the use of fossil-fuels and maximising the potential of alternative energy sources.

The policy makers have so far failed to understand the importance and benefits of alternate energy sources such as solar, windmill energy etc. They are cheap and quick methods for producing electricity. Pakistan is a very blessed country because solar energy is available in most cities year-round. Similarly, wind energy is readily available in the coastal areas. These energy sources if tapped can be of great help in reducing the current demand supply gap.

PAKISTAN: COMMERCIAL ENERGY SUPPLIES (JUL-MAR)

FISCAL YEAR

HYDROELECTRICITY

THERMAL

NUCLEAR

.
IC.
(MW)
GEN.
(GWH)
IC.
(MW)
GEN.
(GWH)
IC
(MW)
GEN.
(GWH)
IMPORTED (GWH)

2008-09

6,481

20,526

12,632 p

39,154

462

918

195

2009-10 (e)

6,481

23,535

12,707 p

39,342 p

462

2,521

185

IC: Installed Capacity, Gen: Generation

ELECTRICITY CONSUMPTION (% SHARE) ( JULY-MARCH)

YEAR DOMESTIC COMMERCIAL INDUSTRIAL AGRICULTURE PUBLIC LIGHTING SUPPLY TO KESC
2008-09 42.20 6.40 25.20 13.30 0.50 7.50
2009-10 42.15 6.45 23.92 14.03 0.57 7.94