Pakistan turns to Solar Power to address energy crisis
Solar Power has been mooted as an economically viable alternative energy for the past few years and investment in solar power has been growing (http://www.emergingrealestate.com/businesses-lead-the-way-in-solar-investment). In further industry news it has now emerged that solar power is being recognised by Pakistan as a potential solution for the country’s energy crisis.
Pakistan’s daily energy demands mean the country needs to produce 16,000 megawatts of electricity but can only provide 13,000 megawatts according to the state owned Pakistan Electric Power Company. The result of this is widespread electricity cuts, which in some areas can be for up to 16 hours a day. People are left without air conditioning in the summer or heating in the winter and the human cost can be devastating, not to mention the inevitable cost to industry and consequently the economy.
With elections on the horizon for later this year and voters confirming that the energy crisis is their biggest single concern, the Government is starting to address the problem in earnest. The Prime Minister this month ordered the Government to provide solar power electricity in rural and remote regions, describing renewable energy as “the investor’s choice” and confirmed the private sector had already offered to produce 1500 megawatts per day. Asim Hussain, the Pakistan minister responsible for petroleum and natural resources, confirmed that “we plan to promote the use of solar geysers as the gas shortage is becoming acute. The gas companies would install solar water heaters at consumer premises and deduct the amount in instalments in the gas bills”.
Pakistan’s Alternate Energy Development Board say there is a 2.4 million megawatt potential for solar energy alone in Pakistan and Niaz Ahmed Kathia, director of Alternate Energy Systems, recently commented that “energy is our biggest issue, more than terrorism, and if we replace our one million tubewell pumps with solar ones, we can save 7000 megawatts”. The Norwegian company Telenor has also set up 50 solar powered sites in remote areas which can save over 940 litres of diesel a month.
The country’s first on-grid solar power station began testing in Islamabad recently, capable of producing 179 kilowatts and Senator Rukhsana Zuberi, a former chair of the Pakistan Engineering Council, confirmed that “it is a seed for thousands more solar power plants”. Solar powered street lights are also appearing in cities including Lahore and Karachi.
Emerging Real Estate have long believed that alternative energy, and solar power in particular, provide an alternative investment to add to your portfolios and would be delighted to discuss these opportunities with you in further detail. Please give us a call or contact us via the link below - http://www.emergingrealestate.com/sustainable-investments.