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Energy is the basic necessity for life. But for energy no form of life would have ever
emerged. We all know energy for providing us light and comfort. It can help us to cool
down during summers and feel warm during winters. It also helps us to go from one place
to another. All automobiles need energy to run; but even otherwise all other means of
transport need energy. Energy is not a solid, liquid or an even a gas, but it can go
from anywhere to anywhere. In fact it is everywhere. We cannot make energy rather
energy made us possible. Energy has become an important prerequisite for the economic
development of a country. On one hand it is used for the industrial and agricultural
purposes and on the other hand it is required for domestic use of the citizens.
Energy Shortages
An energy crisis is any great shortfall (or price rise) in the supply of energy resources to
an economy. It usually refers to the shortage of oil and additionally to electricity or other
natural resources.
World energy consumption is rapidly increasing with an increase in population and
urbanization. Historically, economic growth has been highly correlated with electrical
energy use. The per capita energy consumption is an indicator to measure the prosperity
of any society. It is approximately 500 KWh in Pakistan whereas the world average is
2500 KWh which is five times greater than that of ours. This evidently indicates that
Pakistan is an energy-deficient country. The total available capacity of electrical
generation in Pakistan is 14000 MW and the country is facing a shortfall of 4000 MW in
the present summer.
Certainly shortage of energy resources is the biggest challenge in Pakistan’s energy
sector but more serious problem is developing consensus policies to govern and regulate
energy sector in Pakistan. The country at the moment is not only facing energy problems
but there are also problems of energy vision. No government can make a successful and
comprehensive policy if there is no suitable vision about solution of different problems
and challenges being faced.
The most demanding energy resource at the moment is electricity which is creating
serious issues of law and order, industrial growth and price inflation.
No country can grow without cheap energy resources. Similarly competitiveness can only
be maintained in industrial sector and national economy with decreasing cost of
production. If there will be more cost of production, then certainly imports of cheaper
goods will throng in consumer markets and then no national bias can force the consumers
to opt for expensive and low quality products when cheaper and better quality products
will be available to consumers

Energy Supply

Primary energy supply and per capita availability of energy witnessed a decline of 0.64
percent and 3.09 percent respectively during July‐March 2009‐10 over the same period
last year. This decrease in the primary energy supply and per capita availability during
the first nine months of the current fiscal year is higher than its fall in the full year of
2008‐09 when primary energy supply and per capita availability narrowed down by 0.58
percent and 2.27 percent respectively. The fall in energy supply during current period can
be attributed to inter corporate circular debt problem.
Pakistan needs around 15,000 to 20000 MW electricity per day, however, currently it is
able to produce about 11,500 MW per day hence there is a shortfall of about 4000 to
9000 MW per day. This shortage is badly hampering the economic growth of the country.

Generation 10487 MW
Load Management 1615 MW
Computed Demand 12102 MW
KESC Export (Maximum) 650 MW
Generation Contribution:
(i) Hydel 3194 MW
(ii) PEPCO Thermal 2118 MW
(iii) IPPs 5113 MW
(iv) Rental 62 MW
Wapda 24 -01-2011
Energy Consumption

Conditions in pakistan regarding energy consumption are misereable and even getting
worse day by day.
Pakistan’s energy consumption is met by mix of gas, oil, electricity, and coal and LPG
sources with different level of shares. Share of gas consumption stood at 43.7 %,
followed by oil 29.0 percent, electricity 15.3 percent, coal 10.4 percent and LPG 1.5
Petroleum Product

The petroleum products energy supplies during July‐March 2009‐10 increased to 16.3
million tones from 14.2 million tonnes in same period last year thereby witnessing the
14.6 percent growth during the period. Due to increased petroleum products energy
supplied, the overall consumption of petroleum products exhibits an increase of 8.1
percent during July‐March 2009‐10 against the same period last year.
The power, industry and transport sectors consumed the higher quantity of petroleum
products during the period under consideration. Improvement of domestic demand led the
increase in the consumption of petroleum products by transport and industry. While the
power sector consumption of petroleum products is based on circular debt faced by
refineries forcing them to consume higher amount of final petroleum products.
Natural Gas
Due to this increase in availability of natural gas, the overall consumption of gas
remained higher during the period. Furthermore, the sector wise consumption of gas
suggests that the household, commercial, fertilizer and transport sector witnessed positive
growth in consumption of gas during 2008‐09.
More recently, with the exception of cement and power sectors, many major sectors have
witnessed positive growth rates during July‐March FY10. The consumption of gas by
industry has witnessed a significant increase of 5.3 percent during July‐March 2009‐10
especially after the declined of 1.1 percent during 2008‐09. The increase in industrial
consumption owes to rise in domestic demand for manufacturing production during the
The maximum decline of 72.7 percent has been witnessed in cement sector’s gas
consumption on the back of contraction in its external demand during the period along
with the switch over to coal for production. Decline in power sector’s gas consumption is
based on the inter corporate circular debt reason. On the other hand, gas consumption in
the transport sector increase due to shift from imported fuel oil to relatively cheaper
source of gas during July‐March 2009‐10.


For reasons discussed earlier, the overall electricity consumption has followed a declining

trend since 2008‐09. As overall electricity consumption in the country has witnessed a

negative growth of 1.7 percent during July‐March 2009‐10 over the same period last



Pakistan has coal resources estimated at over 185 billion tonnes, including 175 billion
tonnes identified at Thar coalfields in Sindh province. Pakistan’s coal generally ranks
from lignite to sub‐bituminous. After witnessing a decline of 17.0 percent in 2008‐09, the
total production of coal has increased by 10.0 percent during July‐March 2009‐10 over
the corresponding period last year (see Table 13.6). This improvement owes to increased
import of coal during the period as indigenous production of coal witnessed a decline 6.5
percent during the period under review. As a result, share of coal imports in overall
availability of coal, increased from 62.2 percent in July‐March 2008‐09 to 67.9 percent
during current fiscal year. About 58.9 percent of total coal in the country has been
consumed by the brick kilns industry whereas 39.6 percent consumed by cement industry
during the period of July‐March 2009‐10.
The coal consumption shares of brick kilns and power sectors decreased by 2.4 percent
and 35.8 percent respectively during July‐March 2009‐10 against the same period last
year. Due to price differentia between coal and furnace oil, almost the whole cement
industry has been switched over to coal from furnace oil. Operational coal mines
decreased production by 15 percent from 4.12 million tonnes in 2007‐08 to 3.49 million
tonnes in 2008‐09.

Resources of Energy

( A)Renewable Energy

Renewable energy flows involve natural phenomena such as sunlight, wind, tides,
plant growth, and geothermal heat. Renewable Energy is basically the energy that comes
from natural sources such as wind, sunlight, tides, rain, and geothermal heat. Generally
renewable energy projects are used on a large scale, however, this does not mean that
renewable energy cannot be used in smaller areas such as villages or more generally rural
areas. The renewable energy is named so because it is environment friendly and it can
replace non renewable energies like oil and coal.

Types of Renewable Energy

Wind power

The first major form of renewable energy that

we will look at is wind power. Wind has
been an energy source for a very long
time. It was used by the Chinese about
4000 years ago to pump water for their
crops and by sailors to sail around the world. Airflows can be used to run wind
turbines. Modern wind turbines range from around 600 kW to 5 MW of rated
power, although turbines with rated output of 1.5–3 MW have become the most
common for commercial use; the power output of a turbine is a function of the
cube of the wind speed, so as wind speed increases, power output increases
dramatically Areas where winds are stronger and more constant, such as offshore
and high altitude sites, are preferred locations for wind farms.
Though Pakistan has potentials of wind energy ranging from 10000 MW to 50000 MW,
yet power generation through wind is in initial stages in Pakistan and currently 06
MW has been installed in first phase in Jhampir through a Turkish company and
50 MW will be installed shortly. More wind power plants will be built in Jhampir,
Gharo, Keti Bandar and Bin Qasim Karachi.


Energy in water can be harnessed and used. Since

water is about 800 times denser than air, even a
slow flowing stream of water, or moderate sea
swell, can yield considerable amounts of energy.
Today there are many hydroelectric power
stations in the world and together they are
providing about 20% electricity across the globe.

Unlike other types of power stations, hydroelectric power stations can promptly increase
to full capacity. Electricity can be generated constantly so long as sufficient water is
available. Many countries preponderantly rely on hydropower for electricity generation.
Compared with total current demand of 18000 MW, Pakistan has an identified
hydropower potential of 45000 MW out of which merely 15 percent, amounting to 6500
MW, has so far been exploited. The four major projects in this regard include Tarbela,
Ghazi Barotha, Mangla and Chashma, having a capacity of 3478, 1450, 1000 and 187
MW respectively. Pakistan is having rich resource of energy in hydal power, however,
only 32 % of total electricity generation is coming from hydro power. Currently we are
having 6555 MW against the potential of 41000 to 45000 MW.
The only meaningful activity during the recent past has been the construction of the
Ghazi Barotha project whereas the Neelum-Jhelum project with a capacity of 969 MW is
under construction at the moment.

Current Hydropower stations oh Pakistan

Tarbella Dam : 3,478 MW

Ghazi Brotha: 1450 MW

Mangla Dam 1,000 MW

Warsak Dam 240 MW

Chashma 184 MW

Solar energy

Solar energy is the energy derived from the sun

through the form of solar radiation. Solar powered
electrical generation relies on photovoltaic’s and heat
Solar energy is also one of the oldest renewable
sources in the world. This energy is taken from the
sun in the form of solar radiation. There are basically
three ways that we can use the sun’s energy. The first
is by solar cells in which photovoltaic or photoelectric
cells are used to convert light directly into electricity.
The second is solar water heating in which the heat from the sun is used to warm the
water in glass panels on the roof therefore no longer requiring gas or electricity to heat
the water. The third is solar furnaces which use mirrors to capture the sun’s energy into a
congested place to produce high temperatures. These solar furnaces can be used to cook
Pakistan has potential of more than 100,000 MW from solar energy. Building of solar
power plants is underway in Kashmir, Punjab, Sindh and Balochistan. However, private
vendors are importing panels / solar water heaters for consumption in the market.
Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) is working for 20,000 solar water
heaters in Gilgit Baltistan. Mobile companies have been asked by the government to shift
supply of energy to their transmission towers from petroleum to solar energy panels.

Biomass or in other words energy from organic materials such as wood, sugarcane and
other solid wastes can be burnt to provide heat or may be used to make steam for a power
station. Animal manure, seaweed, woodchips and other wastes may also be used to
produce energy.
Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) of Pakistan has planned to generate 10
MW of electricity from municipal waste in Karachi followed by similar projects in
twenty cities of country.

Bio fuel

Liquid bio fuel is usually either bio alcohol such as

bio ethanol or oil such as bio diesel.

Ethanol can be used as a fuel for vehicles in its pure

form, but it is usually used as a gasoline
additive to increase octane and improve
vehicle emissions. Bio diesel is made from vegetable oils, animal fats or
recycled greases.
Bio diesel can be used as a fuel for vehicles in its pure form, but it is usually used as a
diesel additive to reduce levels of particulates, carbon monoxide, and hydrocarbons from
diesel-powered vehicles. Bio fuels provided 1.8% of the world's transport fuel in 2008.
According to the International Energy Agency, bio fuels have the potential to meet more
than a quarter of world demand for transportation fuels by 2050.

( B ) Non-Renewable Resources (Fossil fuel)

A non-renewable resource is a natural resource which cannot be produced,
grown, generated, or used on a scale which can sustain its consumption rate, once used
there is no more remaining. These resources often exist in a fixed amount and are
consumed much faster than nature can create them. Fossil fuels (such as coal, petroleum
and natural gas) and nuclear power (uranium) are examples.
Natural resources such as coal, petroleum, oil and natural gas take thousands of years to
form naturally and cannot be replaced as fast as they are being consumed. Eventually
natural resources will become too costly to harvest and humanity will need to find other
sources of energy. At present, the main energy sources used by humans are non-
renewable as they are cheap to produce.


Coal is primarily used as a solid fuel to produce electricity and heat through combustion.
World coal consumption was about 6,743,786,000 short tons in 2006 and is expected to
increase 48% to 9.98 billion short tons by 2030. When coal is used for electricity
generation, it is usually pulverized and then combusted (burned) in a furnace with a
boiler. The furnace heat converts boiler water to steam, which is then used to spin
turbines which turn generators and create electricity.

Petroleum Products

In 2009-10, consumption of petroleum products was 29% of total share of energy.

Majority of crude oil is imported from gulf countries to meet the demand. Power,
industry and transport sectors consume higher quantity of petroleum followed by
agriculture and house holds. Petroleum is also used in generation of electricity, which
counts 64 percent of total electricity generation (34 coming from hydro generation).
Balance recoverable reserves of crude oil in country have been estimated at 303.63
million barrels and we are extracting approximately 24 million crude oil annually,
meaning if we do not explore new wells, we will exhaust our current crude oil reserves in
12-13 years.

Crude oil is a naturally occurring, flammable liquid consisting of a complex mixture of
hydrocarbons of various molecular weights and other liquid organic compounds, that are
found in geologic formations beneath the Earth's surface. Petroleum is recovered mostly
through oil drilling
Oil contributes more than 46.31% of the total energy supplying in the country. The oil
production increase from 59964 barrels per day in 1992-93 and now for 2003-04 it was
62139 increasee per day barrels out of the total consumption of petroleum production
during july-march 2003-04. 1.90% was consumed by households , 13..2% by industrial
sector, 1.4% by agriculture sector, 63% by transports sector, 18.2% power sector and
2.3% by the Government.

Natural Gas
Importance of natural gas is increasing rapidly. Average production of natural gas is
4,048.76 million cubic feet per day as against 3,986.53 million during corresponding last
year, showing an increase of 1.56 percent. Natural gas is used in general industry to
prepare consumer items, to produce cement, for manufacturing fertilizers and to generate
electricity. In form of CNG, it is used in transport sector. Share of natural gas in energy
consumption is 43.7 percent.
Due to price differential between CNG and Petrol, vehicles are using converted to CNG
and approximately 2.0 million vehicles are using CNG and currently Pakistan is the
largest CNG user country in the world. Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) contributes
around 0.7 percent to total energy supply in country and is being imported to stop
deforestation in hilly area.
Nuclear Energy
Nuclear power stations use nuclear fission reaction to generate energy by the reaction of
uranium inside a nuclear reactor. Pakistan has a small nuclear power program, with 425
MW capacities, but there are plans to increase this capacity substantially.
Since Pakistan is outside the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, it is excluded from trade
in nuclear plant or materials, which hinders its development of civil nuclear energy.
Remaining issues in development of nuclear energy are enrichment of uranium from
U235 to U238, controlling chain reaction and dumping of solid waste.

Pakistan Nuclear Power Reactors

Reactor Type MW Construction started Commercial operation
Karachi PHWR 125 1966 1972

Chashma 1 PWR 300 1993 2000

Chashma 2 PWR 300 2005 expected 2011
Total 425 MW

PHWR = Pressurized heavy water reactor - Canadian based reactors

PWR = Pressurized water reactor– Chinese based reactors

Causes of Energy Crisis:

Energy is now the talk of town in Pakistan. Starting from house wives, traders,
businessmen, students, ministers all the victims of the shortage of energy. Karachi the
biggest city experiencing up to 12 hours load shedding in peak hot weather and during
the board exams are on the way. Every body now became the expert of energy and all the
figures are on finger tips. Some time the shortage is 200 MW some time 2500 MW.
Energy admin seriously explores the causes of such acute shortage gas and fuel.
Pakistan’s energy crisis traces its roots to following distinct causes :

Growing Energy Demand

Over the years there is greater need of energy because of;

• Increase in population,
• enhancement in lifestyle
• industrial and agricultural growth
• greater transportation needs

Lack of proactive and integrated planning for production of energy:

Pakistan has had wider potentials to tap energy, however, due to lack of any
integrated/proactive planning, very less number of power producing plant were installed
to meet futuristic demands. Resultantly, over the years, the gap between energy demand
and supply drastically grew and now against demand of 20000 MW, we are having
around 11500 MW.

Imbalanced Energy Mix

Energy mix in Pakistan is quite imbalance in comparison to other countries, with greater
reliance on non-renewable resources of gas (43.7 %) and oil (29 % - majority of which is
imported). Prices of petroleum products/crude oil fluctuate and in current Afro-Arab
political crisis, the oil prices are likely to increase manifold affecting oil prices in
Pakistan. A rational energy mix planning ought to be developed giving greater
dependency to renewable (hydel power), indigenous (coal) and alternative energy
resources (wind and solar energy).

Non-utilization of enormous indigenous energy resources

Thar Coal

Pakistan is having one of the largest coal fields in Thar, having reserves of more than
175 billion tones, which exceeds equivalent oil reserves of Saudi Arabia, Iran etc.
In addition to power generation, and this coal can be used for chemical and fertilizer
production. Moreover, employment provided to workforce can be instrumental in
increasing GDP and economic prosperity to many families.

Hydal Power Generation

Pakistan has potential of hydro resources to generate 41000 to 45000 MW, however,
only 6555 MW is currently being generated by this important renewable resource.
Four large hydro power dams namely Kalabagh 3600 MW, Bhasha 4500 MW, Bunji
5400 MW and Dasu 3800 MW can be constructed to generate hydro electricity.
Similarly, many small to medium hydro plants can be installed on rivers and
canals etc.

Aging of the Equipment

One very important reason attributed to this energy shortage is the aging of the
generating equipment which could not develop the electricity as per the design
requirement. This is the responsibility of continuous updating the equipment and keeping
the high standard of maintenance.
We sincerely think a serious thought should be given for general overhaul and
maintenance of existing equipment to keep them in good working order.

Wastage of Energy

So far energy conservation is limited to newspaper ads lip service in seminars. No serious
thought is being given to utilize the energy at the optimum level. A new culture need to
develop to conserve energy. Some times on government level illiteracy is blamed for the
failure of the energy conservation program. This is not true,. Maximum energy is
consumed by elite class which has all the resources of knowledge and communication.
But for their own luxury they themselves ignore the problem. Government should
seriously embark on energy conservation program.

High Cost of Fuel

The cost of crude has increased from 40 $ to 140 $/barrel. It means the generation from
thermal units are costing exorbitant price. WAPDA and KESC when purchasing
electricity on higher cost are not eager to keep on selling the electricity on loss. Therefore
they do not move on general complain of load shedding.
One simple solution is to increase the energy cost. Again the theft of electricity from the
consumers adding the misery of common citizen who wants to pay the bills honestly. The
problem of the energy losses is being discussed for more than a decade and in spite all
efforts no solution has been found.

Monopoly in the Business

Wapda and KESC are two generation and dispatch units in Pakistan. Although NEPRA is
a government authority to settle the tariff issues but the fact remains that once the
question of WAPDA comes the authority has a very little influence.
This is suggested that private sector should be allowed to install power plant and settle
the electricity to consumers. Once the rates are settled on competitive basis and the
service and uninterrupted power supply will be insured then consumers will be benefited.

Exploring Coal

Pakistan is blessed with large amount of the coal. again no serious work is done to
explore the coal for power generation. This is complained that the coal quality is inferior.
However tailored made solutions are available to burn any type of coal. Government is
looking for private sector to play its role.
In our opinion the government itself should come forward and install the power plants on
the site of coal mines only.

Renewable Energy

The government exerting great efforts to develop the renewable energy. PPIB has issued
letter of intent to many private sector sponsors. If a serious work is done then the total
shortage can be met from Hydro and wind power sector.
This is also suggested that small loans should be provided to consumers to install small
hydro and solar cells for one family usage of electricity. The mechanism should be made
that instead of monthly bills loan recovery each month to be carried out.

Role of Government

So far the government is looking for private sector investment in energy sector and for
itself it chooses a role of facilitator and arbitrator. We strongly suggest that a massive
investment from government itself in generating units for conventional as well as new
technologies is needed. Once the government sector embarks on massive plans then
private sector will follow immediately.

Energy Planning

In spite higher costs immediate relief is only possible with thermal power plants which
can be commissioned in 24 months time. A comprehensive and realistic planning will
help to develop generating units in Pakistan which will be a catalytic element for
the economic growth, poverty elevation and prosperity in Pakistan

Distribution System

Wapda briefing highlights the poor distribution system as the main cause of tripping and
breaks down of the system. However we consider as the last of our concern.
This is true that the distribution system causes many unwanted tripping and breaks down
but now we honestly believe that the shortage of energy generation is our main cause of
the problem for last twenty years WAPDA and KESC complaining about the distribution
system but fails to bring any improvement.
Consequences of Energy Crisis

Economic Factors

Energy is pivotal for running all other resources and crisis of energy directly influences
all other sectors of the economy. The economic progress is hampered by decline in
agricultural productivity as well as by halting in operations of industries. One important
factor of lower GDP and inflation of commodity prices in recent years is attributed to
shortfalls in energy supply.

Agriculture Sector
Agricultural productivity of Pakistan is decreasing due to provision of energy for running
tube wells, agricultural machinery and production of fertilizers and pesticides. Thus
higher energy means higher agricultural productivity.

Industrial Sector
Nearly all Industrial units are run with the energy and breakage in energy supply is
having dire consequences on industrial growth. As a result of decline in energy supply,
industrial units are not only being opened, but also the existing industrial units are
gradually closing.

By closure of industrial units and less agricultural productivity, new employment
opportunities ceased to exist and already employed manpower is shredded by the
employers to increase their profit ratios. Thus energy crisis contributes towards

Social Issues
This factor is primarily related to the domestic usage of energy (cooking, heating and
water provision). Load shedding cause unrest and frustration amongst the people and
results in agitation against the government.


Declination in economic growth, lower agricultural productivity, unemployment and

shackling industrial growth result in increasing poverty. Currently, around forty percent
of our population is living beyond poverty line and this ratio is increasing day by day.
Ample control of energy crisis will surely yield in curbing the menace of poverty.

Solutions of Energy Crisis

Energy crisis can be curtailed by following.

Reducing Unnecessary Energy Use:

• Usage of electricity saving devices

• Awareness campaign for energy saving
• Reduction in unnecessary transportations by developing good public transport
systems and strengthening Pakistan railways
• Reduction in industrial uses with installation of effective equipment/ energy
efficient and with increasing efficiency of workforce (cost effective)
• Decreasing reliance on rental power projects, because instead of doing any good,
they are increasing prices of electricity.
• Decreasing line losses by using efficient power transmission cables
Developing New Energy Resources

• Tapping indigenous resources (Thar coal)

• Using renewable resources (water) by constructing new dams and hydro power

• Import of natural gas by IPI (Iran Pakistan India) and TAPI (Turkmenistan,
Afghanistan, Pakistan and India) pipelines

• Import of electricity from Tajikistan -through Pak Afghan Tajikistan

transmission- and Iran (approximately 1000 MW from each of them) pipelines

Utilizing alternative energy resources

• Wind power

• Biodiesel /Biomass

• Solar

• Tidal

• Enhancing civilian nuclear capacity


• Economic Survey of Pakistan 2009-10

• Energy Demand in Pakistan: A Disaggregate Analysis by Muhammad Arshad

Khan, Senor Research Economist & Usman Ahmed, Staff Economist, Pakistan

Institute of Development Economics, Islamabad

• Through internet resources.

• www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2011/04

• www.powergenworldwide.com