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LAHORE: The federal government is planning to introduce renewable energy entrepreneurship in the country to promote renewable energy share in the national energy mix formula which would not only reduce the vulnerability of the power sector to surges in oil prices but would also provide cheap, clean and green energy solutions to the country with ample local employment opportunities, said sources.

The government has planned to produce 20 percent of the total electricity through renewable means including solar, wind and geothermal, by 2025 that will be taken to 30 percent by 2030. At present, they said, the contribution of power generation through Bagasse is 3 percent, followed by 2 percent through wind and 1 percent through solar generation.

It may be noted that the Council of Common Interests (CCI) has also approved the new policy with consensus to make the country self-sufficient in the energy sector. Under the policy, competitive bidding would be conducted to bring down electricity rates.

Energy experts are of the view that the electrical power sector of Pakistan has become non-resilient due to improper energy mix. Also, they added, upgradation of all segments of power sectors, growing urbanization rate, population explosion, climate-change born circumstances and rising water disputes in current geopolitical scenarios are adding to the miseries.

Wajid Ali, an energy expert, said Pakistan is generating a meagre amount of energy from renewable sources. The unwise, non-economic, and non-judicious reliance on foreign fuel by Pakistan is a leading cause of the high cost of generation, he added.

Muhammad Khalid, another expert, said the government should use improved energy mix formula by less relying on fossil fuels and generating most of the power from hydroelectric sources as hydropower generation is reliable, economical, highly efficient and has low maintenance cost as compared to other renewable energy sources.

Amid ample renewable energy resources in Pakistan, it is importing conventional fuels which results in the high cost of generation and makes the power sector of Pakistan vulnerable to international oil price rising. The prolonged energy crisis has devastated the national economy and slowed the industrialization process.

He said multiple reasons behind energy crises like population explosion, growing urbanization rate, improper energy mix, high transmission and distribution losses, corruption, power theft, lack of deployment latest smart technologies and the absence of advanced metering infrastructure needs an immediate response from all spheres of the government.

Adoption of renewable technologies, simultaneous up-gradation of all segments of power sectors of Pakistan, reduction in power losses, improved structure of the power sector, a paradigm shift from thermal sources to renewable sources and effective management are leading solutions to coup with prevailed energy crisis, he stressed.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020