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Thar Power Gets the Green Light

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    Thar Power Gets the Green Light

    I may not agree with lots of decision made by the Musharraf’s government, however, it has taken bold steps towards meeting the country’s energy and water needs of the future. It sets the trend by sorting out dispute with Hub Power soon after taking charge. Next step was to outline the country’s hydel power policy encapsulated in Vision 2025. While the country still struggles to bring line losses down, currently at 25-30 % of total generators’ output, it is setting up new units at almost a record pace.

    As the policy makers envision to achieve GDP growth of over 6-7 % within the next five years, seamless supply of power to our domestic and industrial sector becomes the forth most priority. This includes switching of thermal power units from furnace oil to locally tapped natural gas in order to save precious foreign exchange. While thermal power plants take less time and capital to build, they are bound to be more costly to run due to the amount of fuel required generating electricity. The recent major discoveries of gas in Sind will make sure that, after transition, the country has ample gas reserves for the next decade or two for domestic and industrial consumption. However, the focus now is more towards using hydro and coal for generating power.

    Coal became a viable option after the discovery of one of the major coalfields in the world, in Thar Sind. Estimated to contain coal equivalent to 180 billion tons, we are now entering into a phase where the feasibility studies of this coal reserve have almost been completed. Within the next year, two power plants will be built with capacity of generating 600 megawatts of power. Over the next five years, the total capacity will be brought up to 3000 megawatts by means of four more units. The implications of this project are tremendous coupled with Ghazi-Barotha hydel channel (capacity 3000 megawatts) to be inaugurated July next year. It will save the country from crippling energy shortages in the future, which could hamper industrial growth.

    3000 megawatt power plants to be set up at Thar coal field  

    ISLAMABAD (June 22 2002) : Power plants of 3000 mw capacities will be developed and commissioned at Thar coal field within the next five years.
    In first phase, two power generating plants of capacity 300 mw each, will be completed in one year, sources in the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources said on Friday.
    A Chinese Company Shenhua Group has been awarded the project and will undertake feasibility study. The company has selected a block out of four blocks reserved for power generation at Thar coal field for this purpose.
    The company has been provided with the available geological information and data on Thar.
    An MoU has been signed by Sindh Government and Shenhua Group for commissioning of two power generating plants of capacity 300 mw each in the first phase.
    According to sources, the company has started work on feasibility study of the power generating plants, which will he completed in one year.
    After completion of feasibility study, work on power generating plant will be started.
    The Shenhua Group has requested for more information about various government policies. And most of the information have already been provided to the company.
    A large coal field, having a resource potential of about 175 billion tonnes, has been discovered at Thar in Sindh province.
    The coal field extends over 9,000 square km out of that 350 square km areas has been studied in detail by Geological Survey of Pakistan proving 9 billion tonnes coal in four blocks.
    For the development of Thar coal deposits, a Task Force comprising all the stakeholders under the chairmanship of Chief Executive/President of Pakistan has been constituted.
    The overall objective of constituting Task Force is to provide a highest decision making forum required for developing natural resources on last track basis.
    Owing to spontaneous combustion properties, Thar coal cannot be transported to a long distances in large quantities.
    In view of anticipated shortfall in electricity and other energy resources during the next 10 years, maximum use of this coal will be used in power generation.
    The Sindh Government is endeavouring to develop required infrastructure as soon as possible.
    Thar coal field is connected to Karachi by three road-routes with an average distance of 410 km.
    The scheme for feasibility study of the rail link to connect Thar coal filed/Islamkot the broad gauge railway line has been sponsored.
    A master plan has been prepared for the water supply scheme for Mithi to Islamkot.-APP

    [This message has been edited by Abdullah k (edited June 22, 2002).]

    I've heard the coal reserves in Pak are the second largest in the world.


      Yeah man, it's a great news overall. Especially, the pace at which this project has been transformed from drawing boards to actual minning and erection of infrastructure. My heart fills with joy after reading a news as such.




        Sindh govt, China for exploration of Thar coal

        29th April, 2002

        The minister for finance and planning, Sindh, Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, has disclosed that a Memorandum of Understanding would be signed between China and the Government of Sindh for the exploration of Thar coal.

        He said this while speaking as a guest speaker on the Economic Development of Sindh at the Isra University, Hyderabad, on Wednesday.

        About the development of oil, gas and coal sector in the province, Mr Shaikh said that the President of Pakistan was himself heading the task team on Thar coal and he had asked the Fauji Fertilizers and other companies to switch on to the coal.

        He added that a new policy for coal had been evolved and the coal board in Sindh had been revamped. He said that Sindh had over two billion tons of coal deposits.

        Mr Shaikh said that Sindh was getting royalty for its gas and oil but unfortunately its resources had not been properly utilized. Referring to the economic development of Sindh, he said that the government had taken steps to control the financial indiscipline and it had improved the procurement procedures. He added that by June 30, Sindh would be able to pay back the debts of the State Bank which amounted to Rs11 billion.

        He said that due to the good governance of the government, the federal government and the international donor agencies had been providing considerable funds due to which the education up to matric would be free.

        He said that the budget for health had been increased up to 20 per cent, funds for the Khushhal Pakistan Program had been increased from Rs2 billion to Rs3 billion, the World Bank would provide $100 million per year for the projects for three years, besides Rs3 billion would be with the government to be spent during the next two years on the drought-affected areas.

        About the previous governments' performance, the Sindh finance minister said that Rs20 billion unpaid bills had been left over because of the plundering and financial indiscipline which the present government had paid to restore its image among the donors.

        About the debt relief, he said that the federal government had assured that relief would be given to the province. He said that the multinational companies had been approached to make investments in the province.

        Also geological survey of Pakistan:-

        [This message has been edited by Abdali (edited June 22, 2002).]




          Tuesday April 30, 11:56 AM
          China Signs MoU With Pakistan For $600 Million Pwr Project - Report
          SINGAPORE -(Dow Jones)- China will develop two 300-megawatt thermal power plants totaling US$600 million in Pakistan under a bilateral memorandum of understanding signed in Beijing Monday, Pakistani daily The News International reported Tuesday.
          The two plants will be fired by coal extracted from Pakistan's Tharparkar, or Thar, Desert in Sindh province, the newspaper said.

          Sindh Minister Dewan Mohammad Yousuf Farooqi, who signed the MoU on behalf of the government of Pakistan, said the project will be completed within three years and would be run on a build, own and operate basis.

          China's state-run Shenhua Group Co. Ltd., China's leading coal producer and third largest coal exporter, will construct and operate the two plants at a site located in the 9,000 square kilometer Thar field, the newspaper said.

          Further details on the project were unavailable at the time of writing, as the Pakistani government or Shenhua Group officials were not immediately contactable.

          Shenhua will conduct an exploratory geological survey to better quantify Thar's coal reserves, it added. The Shenhua Group specializes in coal, power, railways, ports and transportation.

          "Under the MoU...the Shenhua Group will undertake a geological study of the Thar coal site, which is to be completed within a period of one year," the newspaper said.

          Pakistan's Ambassador to China, Riaz Hussain Khokhar, said the MoU demonstrated strengthening bilateral economic ties cemented by President Pervez Musharraf and Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji during a summit in Beijing last December.

          The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that Pakistan's recoverable coal reserves total around 3 billion metric tons.

          -By Sri Jegarajah, Dow Jones Newswires; 65-6415-4066; [email protected]

          (This story was originally published by Dow Jones Newswires)

          Copyright (c) 2002 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

          All Rights Reserved


            Many govts plan big projects and talk big, but we should judge from what they actually do, the results on the ground, the present.

            For example, with the Army men running the KESC, it has posted its highest loss ever! And of course it has not improved, but gotten worse.

            KARACHI: Power failure complaints persists

            By Our Staff Reporter

            KARACHI, June 22: Power shutdowns continued to occur on Saturday as power consumers complaints that phones at the complaint centres of the Karachi Electric Supply Corporation remained engaged incessantly.

            People calling from different localities told Dawn that they had been without electricity for more than once.

            Sobia Kaleem, a resident of Gulshan-i-Iqbal, Block 7, said that while her locality had electricity, Block 14 was in the grip of a power breakdown. "My cable operator is based in Block 14. I was watching a football match on TV when television transmission got interrupted. When I called my cable opera-tor I learnt that his block was without electricity." She added that her block had faced power breakdowns earlier in the day.

            Calling from North Karachi, Sector 11-B, a resident said he had noticed on his way back home that some localities from Numaish to Nazimabad had been facing a power cut.

            Calling from Malir Cant, a resident said his locality had faced a power breakdown around 7:30pm. "In order to avoid the heat I decided to go to my relatives in Bahadurabad. When I called them I found that their area was not in the grip of a power shutdown. So we went there. On reaching there, we learnt that they had lost their power supply in the meantime."

            A resident of Scheme 33 near the University of Karachi said his locality had experienced a power breakdown from 7pm to 8:30pm.

            Calling from Saddar and neighbouring localities, some residents said their power supply had been restored after two hour-long power breakdowns.

            A student from Orangi Town called the Dawn office say that during examination days the KESC should refrain from ordering power shutdowns which make it extremely difficult for students to study with peace of mind.

            A consumer of a commercial building in Tariq Road told Dawn his building had been without electricity for the past 22 days.


              KESC has been an achilles heal for the past thirty years and troubles cannot be solved within couple of years considering the amount of debt the corporation has accumulated since coming into existence. First, we should analyze the root causes which lead to surmounting problems, and then compare them to how they are being tackled by the present government.

              The most chronic one out of all is the fact that KESC generators use furnace oil as fuel. Generating costs are much higher than the price at which it sells power to the consumers. Last year, PSO stopped supplying oil to KESC since the latter was unable to foot the bill. Then government had to intervene with cash payments to PSO to keep KESC running. The corporation never had any capital to modify its generators to burn gas in order to save huge sums of money. Corruption in the hierarchy and neglect by various governments to adapt such a simple solution only created more mess in the corporation. Massive power thefts and line losses, well above the national average, just worsened the situation to a point where it almost became a nightmare as how to streamline the operations.

              Well, you just start tackling one issue at a time. The logical approach was to make emergency funds available for upgradation of all the generating units to natural gas, which is being done at the moment and the task will be accomplished within one year. Crack-down on 'kundas' in all parts of Karachi by enforcing the law, and finally change high voltage power-lines to save line losses during transmission. Present government has taken all these steps in order to make it attractive for privatisation sometime in the near future.

              [This message has been edited by Abdullah k (edited June 24, 2002).]


                A step in the right direction
                KARACHI (July 03 2002) : The Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC) has registered an increase of Rs 3 billion revenue this year as compared with year 2001, said the Major General Muhammad Ashraf Salim.

                According to a press release here on Tuesday, he was presiding over monthly performance evaluation meeting at the KESC head office and said that the 'D-day' for KESC's privatisation was approaching. The utility-employees must therefore make their performance objective-oriented.

                Major General Ashraf said that the first quarter of the next financial year would be the period of change hence each department should set its targets and focus on achieving them. The revenue-earning target should be determined with the purpose of increasing the overall income of corporation pre-privatisation.

                MD-KESC Brigadier Tariq Saddozai informed the meeting that the Ministry of Finance was already working on fixing a financial recovery target for KESC, 'sooner we get it quicker we implement it.'

                Major General Ashraf said that accountability of distribution and billing department officials should be carried out strictly on the basis of individual performance. Officials, who have done efficient work, should be acknowledged while failing employees should be taken to task, he added.

                He said that the City Nazim has assured the support of the elected councillors in helping out KESC and the AMT's in recovery of bills and removal of Kunda's by creating moral pressure and creating community resistance for the menace of power theft. Besides, 'Consumer Watch' can also be worked out with the help of the elected councillors and this should be taken as the next milestone for improving the revenue and lowering the T&D losses.

                Chief Engineer Khalid Iqbal said that the KESC has started operating street lights since July 1, he was giving a presentation regarding performance of the power distribution department informed that on public suggestion and during the daytime KESC has again taken over the responsibility of operating the city street lights, while the maintenance of light fittings, chocks and bulbs, poles, repair of switches and circuit breakers will be carried out by city government.

                Police complaint of conductor theft of the streetlight will also be done by the area civic agency. From July 1 onwards in case a streetlight is found 'On' during daytime the KESC Zonal Manager of the area will be held responsible.

                The first penalty would be deduction of Rs 2000 from his salary. Second time the ZM will be given a warning and on third such mistake his annual increment would be stopped.

                Brigadier Tariq Saddozai MD-KESC, Brigadier Irfan Ali Head of AMT's, Brigadier Syed Jawed Iqbal Commander of Air Defence Brigade, Lieutenant Colonel Mushtaq Awan, Lieutenant Colonel Assad Ali Shah, Lieutenant Colonel Sabir Hussain, Lieutenant Colonel Farooq Hussain, Lieutenant Colonel Muhammad Aslam, Chief Engineers Khalid Iqbal, Shabbir Solangi, Anis Qureshi and other senior army and KESC officials attended the meeting.


                  My apology for misstating the generating capacity of Ghazi Barotha project. It's actuall 1450 megawatts and not 3000 megawatts. One megawatt is sufficient to meet energy needs of at least one thousand people.

                  Ghazi Barotha Project to be Completed by Dec 2003

                  ISLAMABAD (July 03 2002) : Ghazi Brotha hydel power project will be completed by December next year, said Member Power, Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) Asghar Ali Randhawa.

                  Speaking in a PTV programme, he said that the hydel power project comprising five units will generate 1450 megawatts of electricity.

                  He said that Wapda will also undertake construction of eight new hydel projects besides the Ghazi Brotha project. These projects will be initiated during the next five years.

                  He said that all these projects on completion will help rationalise the ratio between hydel and thermal power generation which at present is 30 and 70 percent respectively.

                  The completion of the new projects will rectify the imbalance between hydel and thermal generation and will certainly bring down prices of electricity, Randhawa added.

                  He said that we have surplus power- during summer months as more water is available during this period. While power is in short supply during the winter season when there is shortage of water in the reservoirs.

                  Hence during the winter season we have to use thermal units to overcome the shortage of electricity, he added.

                  He said that about. 600 megawatts of electricity will be produced from a thermal power station in Sindh. The feasibility of this project has been started by a Chinese company and will be completed in this year.

                  Besides, we are planning to construct thermal power plants with gas turbine in the big cities like Faisalabad, Multan and Lahore. Wapda is holding talks with the Sui gas company and work the project will start soon, he added.

                  Participating in the programme, Member Water Wapda Ahmad Khan Bhatti said that the storage capacity of the Tarbela and Mangla dams and Chashma reservoir will decrease by 34, 26 and 56 percent respectively due to silting.

                  The storage capacity of the country's reservoirs will decrease by 30 percent in the next 10 years. Wapda is planning to increase its storage capacity under its programme Vision 2010, he added. He said that the construction work at Mirani dam has started since July 1 while work will soon start on another dam Karam Tangi.

                  Besides, he said, the work for raising of Mangla dam will start as soon as the government takes its decision.

                  Bhatti said that the several meetings have been held with the Azad Kashmir government in this connection and project can be completed by 2007 if it is started right now.-APP


                    I'm glad Sindh is being seen now as able to contribute to Pakistan in a better way than before.

                    I believe in dragons, good men, and other fantasy creatures.


                      ISLAMABAD (July 25 2002) : The drilling work to develop multibillion tonnes of Thar coal reservoir will commence within a few days.

                      A Chinese company "Senhua Group" comprising 21 expert along with relevant machinery has arrived in Pakistan to carry out drilling work, informed sources said here on Wednesday.

                      Initially, the group will conduct geological investigations in Thar in six months period.

                      They will prepare a feasibility study on the basis of this investigation in the next six months, the sources added.

                      The Chinese company will drill holes in an area of 50 square kilometres in the desert of Thar and after completing the feasibility study, the company will establish power generation plants of 3000 MW, in phases, during the next five years.

                      According to official sources, Thar coal field is spread over about 9000 square kilometres and the quality of proven coal reserves is of low rank lignite, with good quality low surface and low ash.

                      The same quality of coal is being utilised for power generation in various countries including China, Germany, United States and Poland.

                      The coal reserves at Thar are enough for the next five generations, which could largely meet the increasing demand of electricity.

                      Thar coal field has been divided into four blocks and only one block has been given to the Chinese company.

                      The total estimated quantity of the reservoirs is 175 billion tonnes in an area 350 square kilometres and out of the total area, only 50 square kilometres field with an estimated quantity of one billion tones has been awarded to the Chinese company for exploration.

                      According to a MoU signed few months before, initially, the Chinese company will establish 600 MW power generation station.-APP


                        Good news, keep it coming


                          Originally posted by PyariCgudia:
                          I'm glad Sindh is being seen now as able to contribute to Pakistan in a better way than before.

                          and Balouchistan too. Don't forget NWFP!


                            and where exactly all this energy will be used?? all those seemingly incredible projects are going in the same direction as that disaterous case of IPPs during the time of that harlot benazir ... when MoUs were being signed in her tunure with those foreign IPPs, there were tall claims about how these IPPs will stabilize the energy shortfall and will not only make Pakistan self sufficient in energy production but will also be able to export excess energy to neighboring states. Far from being stabilized or self sufficient, Pakistan got into a messy & embarassing legal brawl with the foreing investors.
                            Load shadding, line losses, departmental corruption and all other factors are still there besides the horrondous & ever increasing Power rates for domestic consumers.
                            Besides, what if any steps will be inducted to tackle the issue of environmental pollution cuz of those coal operated power plants??


                              Originally posted by Vonti:
                              and where exactly all this energy will be used?? all those seemingly incredible projects are going in the same direction as that disaterous case of IPPs during the time of that harlot benazir ... when MoUs were being signed in her tunure with those foreign IPPs, there were tall claims about how these IPPs will stabilize the energy shortfall and will not only make Pakistan self sufficient in energy production but will also be able to export excess energy to neighboring states. Far from being stabilized or self sufficient, Pakistan got into a messy & embarassing legal brawl with the foreing investors.
                              Load shadding, line losses, departmental corruption and all other factors are still there besides the horrondous & ever increasing Power rates for domestic consumers.
                              Besides, what if any steps will be inducted to tackle the issue of environmental pollution cuz of those coal operated power plants??
                              Vonti: Energy will be used to meet our rising demands as we progress towards industrialization. The tarrifs row with IPPs happened due to mishandling of projects by the previous governments, and it did hamper the flow of investment in this vital sector. Most thorny one was Hub power and also the last one to be resolved, more than two years ago.

                              The exorbitant amount charged from the consumers should be addressed. One of the ways to tackle this situation is by installing power plants which use cheap fuels such as coal and natural gas. The other viable option is to build dams at various locations. If you are unaware, please research under Vision 2025, and you will find out how many hydel power projects are being planned and few of them already under construction.