Monday, October 10, 2011

Karachi, Oct. 05 -- IN 1978, the first multi-megawatt wind turbine power plant set up in Denmark triggered an exponential growth of global wind power industry. Currently, the wind energy output worldwide, stands at 157,899MW, mostly concentrated in the US, Europe and China.

India started its commercial wind power generation in the 1990s and now has a total installed capacity of 14,200MW.

Pakistan started looking into harvesting the wind potential in 2002 and the Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) was set up the following year.

According to the AEDB, Pakistan has the potential to produce 50,000MW of wind energy along the wind corridors of Jhimpir, Gharo and Ketti Bandar. However, not a single commercial wind farm has been commissioned so far.

The Renewable Energy Policy 2006 was designed to attract investment in renewable energy sector. The policy is investment friendly and offers a return of 17 per cent in real dollar terms. In addition, there is a wind risk guarantee under which the investor will be paid even if the plant doesn't produce electricity due to low or no wind. Despite such an investment-friendly policy, Pakistan is lagging far behind its regional peers.

The main reason for this has been the government's inability to take the driving seat. It has been a mere spectator. The wind mast that records the wind data has only been installed at a single site in Nooriabad, Jhimpir. There is a need to set up at least one wind mast, one each at Ketti Bandar and Gharo because of the importance of the accurate wind data for the investors.

Currently, the wind data collected by AEDB in Jhimpir dates back to 2003 including many missing months due to persisting faults in the equipment. According to three international wind energy consultants working in Pakistan, the quantity and quality of data available to the AEDB is not sufficient enough to carry out a reliable feasibility study.

Second, whenever a government seeks private investment in a new technology, it should set up a pilot project. This not only helps in marketing the technology, but also builds up the investor's confidence.

Unlike in China, India and Sri Lanka where the governments took the initiative to set up a state-owned commercial wind farm, Pakistan failed to establish any such project as a prototype for the private investors to benefit from it. The results are obvious.

The private investment in wind power sprouted in regional economies barring Pakistan, despite less favourable policies for investors as compared to Pakistan. The AEDB has already issued 90 Letter of Interest (LoI) to various potential investors to develop 4,500MW of commercial wind farms of 50MW each. However, only six out of 90 projects are progressing while the sponsors of the remaining are just sitting idle on the land allocated to them.

The reason for the "wait and see" policy adopted by these investors, is the exogenous risks associated in developing a wind farm as there is not even a single successfully operating commercial wind turbine installed in the country.

The government needs to set up a pilot project. The estimated project cost of developing a 50MW wind farm is between $135-145 million. With a debt to equity mix of 75:25, the government requires between $34-36 million (Rs2.9 - 3.1 billion) while the rest of the amount can be easily arranged in the form of debt from no more than a consortium of five banks.

If set up, the state-owned commercial wind farm project would have certainly reduced the lead time by at least 12 to 16 months that is currently taken by the investors in understanding the investment process, selecting the appropriate engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) and operations and maintenance (O&M), hiring contractors, drafting the concession agreements and negotiating security package.

The government is promoting investment in alternative energy sector other than wind e.g. solar, biomass, etc. For that purpose, a new draft policy "Alternative and Renewable Energy Policy 2011" has been circulated for the feedback from various stake holders.

While it is expected that the new policy to be effective shortly, it may meet the same fate as "Renewable Energy Policy 2006" if the government doesn't step forward proactively and set up the state-owned commercial proto type projects of electricity generation from different alternative energy source Published by HT Syndication with permission from Right Vision News. For any query with respect to this article or any other content requirement, please contact Editor


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Second wind energy pilot project becomes operational in Pakistan

Islamabad - A bird's eye view from Daman-e-Koh (Courtesy APP)

The second wind power pilot project has been made operational on last Friday evening by installing a wind turbine at Daman-i-Koh, the highest point of the Capital.

According to press release the simple installation ceremony in this regard was held and attended by selected gathering consisting of CEO, Engineering Development Board (EDB), Aitzaz A. Niazi, other senior officials of the Board, team of private TV Channel and management of AGECO Firm, says a press release received from EDB here today.

AGECO has earlier installed successfully first wind energy turbine at F-7 crossing for generating energy by flow of traffic and supply it to traffic signals. The landmark achievement of AGECO was appreciated by CEO, EDB. He pleaded to the government to grant special concessions to pioneer of the wind energy projects in the country. The second wind turbine will generate 2 kw energy and its life is 20 years. Therefore, it is financially viable as it covers its cost in first year of operation.

The firm planned to generate enough wind energy for supply of electricity to street lights and traffic signals of the Capital. EDB has taken up their case with the CDA Chairman for meeting their demand of enough suitable sites. The Firm has also a plan to cover Lahore Rawalpindi motorway for similar projects.

A wind energy vertical turbine has been designed by the AGECO Firm which operates at availability of wind in range of 2.1 meters to 7 meters per second against the maximum required range of 3.5 meters per second to generate 1.5 to 2 kw of energy in 24 hours. The locally designed wind energy turbine will cost Rs. 200,000 per kw as compared to imported turbine costing Rs. 1 million per kw.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Turkish power company gets ADB loan for Wind Energy

Zorlu Enerji Elektrik Uretim AS, a Turkish power utility, has won a $36.8 million loan from the Asian Development Bank to expand its wind farm in Pakistan. The loan will help Zorlu Enerji install additional wind turbines to increase the capacity at its project in southern Sindh province to 56.4 megawatts from 6 megawatts, the Manila- based ADB said in a statement on its website.

The loan is for 12 years with a two-year grace period.

Expansion of the farm, located about 100 kilometers (62 miles) northeast of Karachi, will cost $147 million and is expected to be completed by 2012.

The project will be financed with 30 percent equity from Zorlu Enerji. The remaining 70 percent will be financed through the dollar-denominated loans from the ADB, the International Finance Corp., and the ECO Trade and Development Bank, as well as a Pakistan rupee loan from Karachi-based Habib Bank Ltd., it said.

The project will supply power to the national grid through a 20-year power purchase agreement with Pakistan’s National Transmission and Dispatch Company.

Pakistan has set a 6 percent target of renewable energy by 2030. Zorlu Enerji’s project is Pakistan’s first privately owned and financed wind farm, the ADB said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Natalie Obiko Pearson in Mumbai

Editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at

Courtesy: Bloomberg

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Kenya Mobile Carrier Goes Green

Global telecommunications provider Huawei has teamed up with Kenyan mobile phone company, Safaricom, to give "green solutions" on powering its base transmission equipment.The wind-solar-diesel solution is based in a Masai community a short drive from the Kenyan capitol. Like many rural communities, the area is not covered by the national electricity supply grid, and many residents use wind turbines to power their homes.[John Barorot, Safaricom Chief Technical]:"When we build our network more in the rural areas the presence of KPLC (Kenya Power and Lighting Company Ltd) was too far away and was not viable to extend the power lines any more. That is how we came up now with this initiative to use solar, to use wind power especially where we have good wind speeds. The site also uses two diesel generators as a back up power supply.

[John Barorot, Safaricom Chief Technical Officer]: "On our more then 2,000 base stations country-wide, each one of them has a generator with diesel. In fact, we consume up to 700,000 diesel per month."Severe drought and low water levels in the dam that power the hydroelectric plants have increased the power supply’s inconsistency.

[John K Tanui, Huawei Technical Service Director]: "We provide products that can enhance reduction of use of power and in this case we had one solution which we provided to Safaricom."However, regular refueling and maintenance costs are high, and diesel generators produce high volumes of harmful gas that pollute the environment. After installing the wind turbines and solar panels, fuel consumption was down 95 percent. Fuel transport and regular maintenance costs have dropped by at least 90 percent.

The new green energy lets Safaricom look for more eco-friendly solutions and resolve the power bottleneck.


The Science of 350!

350 parts per million is what many scientists, climate experts, and progressive national governments are now saying is the safe upper limit for CO2 in our atmosphere.
Accelerating arctic warming and other early climate impacts have led scientists to conclude that we are already above the safe zone at our current 390ppm, and that unless we are able to rapidly return to 350 ppm this century, we risk reaching tipping points and irreversible impacts such as the melting of the Greenland ice sheet and major methane releases from increased permafrost melt.
There are three numbers you need to really understand global warming, 275, 390, and 350.
For all of human history until about 200 years ago, our atmosphere contained 275 parts per million of carbon dioxide. Parts per million is simply a way of measuring the concentration of different gases, and means the ratio of the number of carbon dioxide molecules to all of the molecules in the atmosphere. 275 ppm CO2 is a useful amount—without some CO2 and other greenhouse gases that trap heat in our atmosphere, our planet would be too cold for humans to inhabit.
So we need some carbon in the atmosphere, but the question is how much?
Beginning in the 18th century, humans began to burn coal and gas and oil to produce energy and goods. The amount of carbon in the atmosphere began to rise, at first slowly and now more quickly. Many of the activities we do every day like turning the lights on, cooking food, or heating or cooling our homes rely on energy sources like coal and oil that emit carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases into the atmosphere. We're taking millions of years worth of carbon, stored beneath the earth as fossil fuels, and releasing it into the atmosphere. By now—and this is the second number—the planet has 390 parts per million CO2 – and this number is rising by about 2 parts per million every year.

Complete Story at:

Monday, March 23, 2009

Manufacturing Wind turbines in Pakistan

A retired air force senior officer explains how wind turbines can be built indigenously within Pakistan.


Sunday, November 9, 2008

Developing Leaders for Sustainable Development

Leadership for Environment and Development (LEAD) is a global network of individuals and non-governmental organizations, committed to sustainable development. LEAD is an independent, not-for-profit organization, established in 1991 by The Rockefeller Foundation. The LEAD network is coordinated through an international secretariat based in the campus of Imperial College London.
In Pakistan, this organization has been successfully conducting a Leadership Development Program for the past many years and has established itself as one of the leader in the area itself. Through its Climate Change Program and Public Policy Program, the organization is aiming to strngthen the institutions working in the area of environment and sustainable development. For more information, please visit