Renewable energy - The best remedy for electrical load shedding in Pakistan

S. M. Bhutta

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


Average 33% time of daily electrical load shedding in Pakistan is most serious as it has affected all activities. Industries are crippled, commercial, official activities and daily life is being detoriated! Total loss to Export is $1.3 billion and oil import bill is $9 billion. If appropriate actions are not taken immediately, the situation is going to get worse when people will fight for every watt of electricity! The impounding crises are not foreseen and its gravity is not yet properly realized by the decision makers! Politics and several lobbies work against construction of major projects of hydel power and baseless controversies have been created. Pakistan is blessed with abundant renewable energy i.e. 2.9 million MW solar, tidal, wind 346,000 MW and 59,000 MW potentials of hydro electricity. Analysis of the reasons for the slow and no growth of these vital renewable potentials in Pakistan indicate that there are barriers which need to be mitigated to take immediate benefits to overcome menace of load shedding. Local R&D, Design, manufacturing, installation and feasibility study capabilities are negligible. Institutional capabilities in most of the organizations can at best be ranked as average or weak. Other impediments and barriers that continue to hamper the load shedding are losses, attitude in the promotion of renewable and hydro power projects include: lack of serious attempts to mitigate the barriers, integrate the programs with profitability; inadequate evaluation of resources; non-availability of reliable baseline data; and lack of coordination among the relevant agencies; weak institutional arrangements for renewable energy promotion; absence of fiscal and financing mechanisms; lack of understanding, awareness, information and outreach; uneven allocation of resources; lack of appropriate quality management, monitoring and evaluation programs; and need of attractive policy framework and legislative support, building consensus among people and provinces, right person for right job, capacity building of relevant institutions, for promotion of hydro electric power and other renewable sources. Public and private efforts in building a strong indigenous base for renewable energy technologies, designing, manufacturing, quality assurance, achieving cost effectiveness, reducing import dependence, promotion of self-reliance and minimizing environmental degradation is one of the objectives to be achieved. Electricity pilferage and technical losses, non payments of bills & corruption need to be seriously addressed. The government's policy towards renewable especially hydro and other energy balances would not only help the country to meet growing demand for electricity, but would also provide additional benefits by increasing fuel diversity or our electricity generation portfolio, reducing our exposure to fossil fuel price spikes, security and supply interruptions, deforestation, development of rural areas, minimize migration to cities, increasing economic development activity from a growing renewable energy industry and improving our environment etc.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages7
Specialist publicationSHP News
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Renewable energy - The best remedy for electrical load shedding in Pakistan'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this