Renewable energy policy
At last the federal government has realised that electricity tariff in Pakistan is highest in the world, hitting hard all categories of consumers and hindering the process of economic development. Addressing a press conference on Wednesday, power minster Omer Ayub Khan blamed the wrong policies of previous governments for the escalated cost of electricity generation. He said that 8000 megawatt electricity will be inducted in the power distribution system from clean renewable sources to raise its share to 20000 megawatts in the overall energy mix by 2030. On the same day Joint Secretary Power Division harped on the same theme in NEPRA hearing for further electricity tariff hike under fuel price adjustment and expressed identical views with that of the minister.
The federal cabinet has approved Alternate Renewable Energy policy in consultation with provincial government to address their reservation and its draft will be sent to the next of Council of Common Interest to take all federating units on board. It is pertinent to mention that the governments of Sindh and Baluchistan had expressed reservations about the proposed draft of renewable energy policy when its first draft was sent to the provinces. It seems that objections of these provinces have taken care of in the revised draft. Khyber Pukhtunkhwa has a tremendous potential of hydel sources, Baluchistan and Sind has wind and solar sources of electricity generation at very low cost as compared with the one produced from expensive fuel like diesel, furnace oil. The electricity generation cost from imported coal and LNG is also on high side. The thermal power generation creates environmental hazards by degrading the air quality index. If the additional electricity generation of 8000 megawatt from clean and renewable sources is added to the system then its share will rise to 60-65 percent in the energy mix, enabling the government to lower its tariff. Currently, the fuel price adjustment and debt surcharge increase the monthly electricity bill by 35 percent.