Govt finalises plan to increase power generation capacity by three times – Newspaper

ISLAMABAD: The government plans to increase the country's power generation capacity by almost 300 percent over the next 20 years to 111,000 megawatts and gradually eliminate almost all existing thermal power plants to meet the growing demand for energy at affordable costs.

The measure is part of the Generation Capacity Expansion Indicative Plan (IGCEP) 2018-40 finalized by the National Transmission and Dispatch Company in consultation with all federal and provincial agencies and private sector consultants to ensure low-cost development of future projects and comply with the obligations of the regulator's network code.

The IGCEP 2018-40 represents the first complete iteration of an integrated planning exercise for the country's electricity sector and will be reviewed every year based on the realities of the land, including the growth trajectory, consumption patterns and completion or delays in projects to ensure compliance with regulations. .

The plan places the current total capacity at approximately 29,000MW even though the total installed capacity is approximately 33,500MW, including approximately 3,000MW of coal-based plants, 9,700MW of hydroelectric plants, 20,000MW of thermal plants in addition to 1,345 MW of nuclear energy and 1,900MW of renewable energy As such, the contribution of 61{7be40b84a6a43fc4fae13304fce9a2695859798abfc41afd127b9f8b21c5f9c5} comes from all thermal sources, 29{7be40b84a6a43fc4fae13304fce9a2695859798abfc41afd127b9f8b21c5f9c5} hydroelectric, 6{7be40b84a6a43fc4fae13304fce9a2695859798abfc41afd127b9f8b21c5f9c5} from renewable sources and 4{7be40b84a6a43fc4fae13304fce9a2695859798abfc41afd127b9f8b21c5f9c5} nuclear. The power generation amounts to 153,000 gigawatt hours (GWh) today.

Thermal plants will be removed in 20 years.

The plan has been established on the basis of three different economic growth scenarios until 2040. With a GDP growth rate of 4.5pc, the government will have to increase its generation capacity to 65,100MW to generate 370,500GWh. In case of a 5.5pc GDP growth rate, the capacity would need to expand to 80,500MW to generate 458,000GWh. With a high growth rate of 7pc, the capacity will be increased to 111,000MW to make available about 630,500 GWh.

Under the plan, the government has firm plans for adding capacity of approximately 17,300MW by 2025, including 6,000MW in the public sector and 11,300MW in the private sector. By 2030, another 8,600MW would be added to the system.

The IGCEP points to a total capacity addition of approximately 98,100MW by 2040. This would include approximately 29,000MW of hydroelectric plants, followed by 20,000MW through local coal-based plants, mainly in Thar. The nuclear power generation capacity would go beyond 4,300MW as a series of large plants of 1,100MW each are completed. The plan provides for a decrease in the capacity of liquefied natural gas plants, while a total of approximately 9,000MW of current petroleum-based plants will be phased out by 2040.

On the other hand, an additional capacity of approximately 16,000MW has been planned through renewable sources (wind, solar, manganese gas, etc.), while the generation capacity imported from coal would increase to 5,000MW.

The plan is also based on the limitations of existing policies and system restrictions. For example, the 66pc energy for Regassified Liquid Natural (RLNG) projects is "take or pay." Although the cheapest plants are available for shipment, their generation has been reduced to take into account the contractual obligations of RLNG. There is a need to reflect, determine and establish how fuel contracts will be negotiated in the renewal phase of these projects regarding the minimum fuel requirements to carry or pay, advocates the plan.

All strategic projects have been considered for the plan. In the long term, the policy will continue to focus on lower-cost generation options and the use of indigenous resources, particularly Thar coal and renewable energy in the south and hydroelectric potential in the north.

In this sense, a project is considered committed whenever the project is already under construction or has reached a financial closure or has strategic importance, that is, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Project (CPEC) or Public Sector Committed Projects. It also takes into account the dates of commercial operation for committed energy projects and candidates transmitted by project executing agencies and further rationalized by the Prime Minister's Energy Reform Task Force.

Wind and solar energy would be developed in the 500MW and 400MW blocks respectively, from 2021-22 onwards. Due to the high annualized cost, projects such as Chiniot, Kaigah, Tungas, Yalbo and Basho have not been included in this report. Similarly, the 1,320 MW Oracle Thar-based plant, although a CPEC project, has not been considered compromised due to its changing characteristics and completion times.

As of 2019, the gap between nominal capacity and demand is constantly widening, and the same begins to exceed the maximum system load. In the year 2032, the cumulative nominal capacity is estimated at 62,979MW, while the maximum load is projected at 50,306MW, therefore, there is a large disparity of around 13,000MW between the two parameters and the capacity is surplus in comparison With the demand.

In 2040, the last year projected for the IGCEP, the total nominal capacity in the system is 98,091MW against a projected maximum load of 80,425MW. Therefore, a significant surplus of around 17,600MW has been estimated between the projected demand and the installed capacity, as a turnover reserve.

With the current costs of renewable energy, as well as the increase in the costs of imported fuels and the devaluation of the currency, the lower-cost generation plan uses large amounts of hydroelectric capacity, Thar coal-based generation and renewable energy that It is in line with the general policy. With the aim of reducing dependence on imported fuels from the perspective of energy security, sustainability and affordability, ultimately, a significant reduction in foreign reserve requirements related to imported fuels is achieved.

The plan did not take into account the impact of demand-side management and net measurement due to a nonexistent or inefficient political direction.

Posted in Dawn, September 10, 2019



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