Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is witnessing significant reduction in loadshedding after substantial increase in power generation and inclusion of thousands of additional units in the national grid, owing to the PML-N government’s goal oriented energy policies.
As a result of prudent policies of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government to end energy crisis in Khyber Pukhtunkwa (KP), considerable improvement in the situation is being witnessed.
An official of Peshawar Electricity Supply Corporation (PESCO) Power Distribution Centre told APP that no load-shedding was currently being carried out in areas where technical and commercial losses (T&CL) were below 10% and recovery was 100%.
The industrial areas of KP and FATA, including Gadoon and Jarmud Karkhano industrial estates etc, had also been exempted from load-shedding and uninterrupted power supply was being given to industries resulting in increase in overall production and creation of jobs for youth and skilled labour as well, he said.
Only three to four hours scheduled load-shedding was currently being carried out in all those cities and villages where T&CL losses were 10 to 20%, including Peshawar, Hazara, Abbottabad, Swat, Mardan, Kohat, Mardan, Haripur and other districts, the official added.
However, only, those areas where T&CL losses were above 70% and recovery was very poor and power theft/kunda culture cases are very high, he said, would face the brunt of load-shedding unless the people stopped illegal use of electricity which was affecting the whole distribution system, besides being the main cause of low voltage and fluctuations.
The substantial decrease in load-shedding and low power tariff in KP and FATA was attributed to massive inclusion of power units of hydel electricity and electricity generated from other sources in the national grid in the country.
Last year, the hydel power stations owned and operated by WAPDA had delivered 33,658 million units of low-cost environment friendly hydel electricity to the national grid, as compared to 31,840 million units generated during 2015, registering an increase of 1818 million units (5.7 %) when the country was in dire need of electricity, the official added. As Khyber Pakthunkhwa and FATA were most suitable for hydel power generation, the Government has taken full advantage of this huge potential and initiated scores of energy projects worth thousands of megawatts to give sigh of relief to the masses.
As part of the government efforts, work on multi-dimensional Kurram-Tangi dam in North Waziristan Agency has been started to provide cheap energy to people of both FATA and Khyber Pakthunkhkwa, he said.
Salim Mirza, WAPDA Director North Projects told APP that work on the Kurram-Tangi dam was in process and would be completed in two stages with gross water storage capacity of about 1.2MAF, besides 83.4MW of electricity capacity.
He said the USAID would provide about Rs 8.5 billion to WAPDA for construction of Stage-I of Kurram-Tangi dam, being built on Kaithu river in North Wazirstan Agency and an agreement to this effect has already been signed.
The funds would be used for construction of a weir on Kaithu River, Shertalla and Spairaga canals, two powerhouses, a transmission line and other operational activities. Mirza said on completion of stage-I more than 16,000 acres of agricultural land would be irrigated and an additional 18.9 MW of electricity would be produced to benefit 100,000 people.
The PC-of stage-II has been completed that would be constructed on River Kurram at Spinwarm in North Waziristan. Ashraf Pervez, Chief Engineer Headquarter WAPDA North told APP that work on Golen Goal Hydro Power Project (GGHPP) 108MW, being constructed at Kaghuzi in Upper Chitral, was in full swing and its first unit with overall 36MW capacity would be operational by December this year.
He said 97 percent civil work on GGHPP and 60% works on Electrical and Mechanical on power house have been completed, adding PESCO has been asked to improve its grid stations and transmission lines in Chitral so that the electricity generated from this project could easily be transmitted to the affected areas of 2015 floods in Upper Chitral.
Gomal Zam dam in South Waziristan Agency with 17.4MW capacity has been completed and generation of electricity has been started to help address low voltage and load-shedding in districts Tank, DI Khan and South Waziristan Agency besides irrigating 1,91,0000 acres of barren land of southern districts of KP, he added.
Work on Tarbela 4th Extension Hydropower Project is underway in full capacity. Under the project three generating units each of them having capacity of 470 MW were being installed at Tunnel No. 4 of Tarbela Dam. On completion, the generation capacity of Tarbela Hydel Power Station would increase to 4888 MW from the existing 3478 MW that would help address problem of energy shortfall, he said.
The other notable hydro power projects include Suki Kinari 870MW on River Kunhar in Manshera to be completed in next five years with a financial assistance of China under CPEC, Dasu Hydropower Project in Kohistan with total 4320MW general capacity including stage-IA 2160MW that would be build on River Indus by 2022 and Monda Dam at confluence of Charsadda and Mohmand Agency near Tangi on river Swat with 800 MW capacity upon completion would provide inexpensive and uninterrupted electricity to the consumers.
The completion of these Federal Government’s funded mega projects would not only address the critical energy shortfall but also end the loadshedding once and for all by 2018, making Pakistan among energy surplus countries.—APP