Renewable Energy mix can mitigate climate change impacts in Pakistan
KARACHI, September 2 (Gwadar Pro)- “Devastating floods due to unprecedented monsoon in Pakistan are the manifestation of climate change and renewable energy mix can play a crucial role in emission reduction to mitigate these disastrous impacts,” Dr. Abid Qaiyum Suleri, Executive Director of Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) while speaking at the first “Annual State of Renewables Conference 2022” held here on Thursday.
Shah Jahan Mirza, CEO of Alternate Energy Development Board (AEDB) informed that by 2030, AEDB aims to increase its renewable energy share to 60%, with 90% of it being indigenous to reduce pressure on foreign exchange reserves. According to him, AEDB is in process of launching a large solar power project with a capacity of 2400 MW with the government providing three sites to private power companies. “Solarization of diesel-based tube wells, waiving off import duty and sales tax on solar technology, introducing single line tariffs for competitive bidding to increase renewable energy generation,” Mr. Mirza said.
Dr. Shamshad Akhtar, Former Finance Minister stressed on the need to decarbonize energy generation and reform policies to address high import dependence, removing low tariffs and subsidies on energy supply to power plants and industries to reduce financial and environmental implications.
Abu Bakar Ahmed said that the Sindh Government has taken several initiatives like solarization of public buildings including schools, hospitals and 225 basic health clinics, to provide 200,000 solar home systems in 10 low energy access districts, and capacity-building activities for domestic production of technology.
Naz Khan, Chief Strategic Officer of K-Electric said that 1200MW electricity will be added in next 7 to 8 year from renewable energy through equity with the private sector and investing its own finances which will save Forex $8 billion to $10 billion.
Yusuf Siddiqui, CEO of Engro Energy Pvt. Ltd. informed that Engro Energy plans to add 500MW renewable energy through Jhimpir power project by 2024 which will be scaled up to 1GW. He advocated liberalization of the power sector and said that private power companies should be allowed to work outside the government’s ambit, take responsibility for risks and sell directly to consumers. He informed that this is a successful and cost-effective international model and can potentially bridge investment and power demand.
Explaining Pakistan’s renewable energy generation potential, Dr Hina Aslam Research Fellow of SDPI informed that 0.07% solar potential is enough to meet Pakistan’s energy demand. She informed that Sindh and Balochistan can produce 340GW wind and suggested recycling 30M mt municipal solid waste annually should be exploited to produce energy from waste. She said that like the rest of the world, Pakistan experienced a 3.25% increase in renewable energy in 2021 and net FDI in the power sector in 2021 was $911.7 million, with much room for more and a $101 Billion target has been set by 2030. She suggested improving coordination between national-subnational entities, indigenous production to lower costs and smoothing out regulatory procedures to catalyze this transition.