Govt comes up with yet another energy plan


ISLAMABAD – The government on Thursday unveiled its energy conservation plan for the year 2011, which it claimed would save between 1,000MW to 1,100MW in six months until September, as power shortfall increased to 3,135MW from 2,965MW.
Minister for Water and Power Naveed Qamar informed the National Assembly that the government had finalised an energy conservation plan to combat the power shortage during the next six months. Qamar said that a two-pronged policy had been devised to control load shedding.
According to the new policy, usage of all lights at government installations, including the offices of the president, prime minister, provincial chief ministers, federal cabinet and other public offices would be reduced by 50 percent.
The plan also included a proposal of two weekly holidays at the federal and provincial levels. Qamar said no unauthorised official would be allowed to use air conditioners in government offices and only officer of BPS 20 and above would be allowed to use ACs after 11 am.
Under these measures, the usage of all streetlights would also be reduced, power supply to billboards and commercial decorative lighting would be cut off. The minister said these measures would remain in place for six months and would be reviewed per the situation.
He added that five new power plants with a capacity of 1,184MW electricity would also be added to the system shortly to boost generation capacity. The new proposed projects include Foundation Power Project Dherki, Hub Power Narowal, Halmore Power Bhikki, Karkay Project Karachi and Chashma Nuclear Power Unit (2).
The government had also enforced an energy conservation plan last year through the closure of markets at 8pm and by disallowing the use of air conditioners for low-rank officials. The much talked about and publicised plan failed, however, as the people had to face the brunt of unprecedented load shedding which in cases of rural areas was 18 to 20 hours while it was eight to 10 hours in the urban areas.