Pakistan's Hydroelectric Power Development
Pakistan and Germany have initiated serious discussions of German funding of eight ongoing and new hydropower projects worth billions of dollars. These talks are taking place in Islamabad between visiting German Minister for Economic Co-operation and Development Ms. Heidemaire Wiegoreak Zeul and Pakistani Prime Minister's Adviser on Finance Mr. Shaukat Tarin, according Business Recorder newspaper.
The projects currently under discussion include 621 MW Palas hydropower project, 567 MW Spat Gah hydropower project, 28 MW Basho hydropower project, 33 MW Harpo hydropower project, 70 MW Lawi hydropower project, Naigaj hydropower project and 300 KW Hingol hydropower project, 43 KW Kurram Tangi Dam. As a start, the German Economic Minister said her country had already committed finances for Keyal Khwar hydropower project located in NWFP on river Indus at Dasu. The project would generate 130 MW power. The focus of many of these development projects are the rural areas in the North West Frontier Province and the least developed federally administered tribal areas of the country affected by insurgencies.
Ms. Heidemaire Wiegoreak Zeul said that Germany was part of Friends of Democratic Pakistan (FoDP) and she had come here for the assessment of the situation and development needs to be discussed at Tokyo in April 17 and then again at the end of April during the annual meeting of the World Bank and IMF. She added that this support was important for Pakistan's development to stabilize the country and the region.
In addition to megaprojects such as 1000 MW Neelum-Jhelum hydropower project, a number of community-based micro hydro projects are being executed with the help of the Agha Khan Foundation in Pakistan's Northern Areas and NWFP. Within this region, out of a total of 137 micro-hydro plants, the AKRSP has established 28 micro-hydros with an installed capacity of 619kW. Initially, in 1986, these plants started as research and demonstration units. These projects were extended to Village Organizations (VOs) and became participatory projects. A Village Organization (VO) is a body of villagers who have organized themselves around a common interest.
After formation, each village organization signed a partnership with AKRSP to abide by all terms and conditions necessary for the village development. The entire responsibility of implementation was passed on to the VOs. AKRSP provided the negotiated cost of the plants and technical input required during the construction period. All the VOs completed the civil work of the plants. They purchased and transported machinery from other parts of Pakistan. The VO members provided subsidized or free unskilled labour and locally produced building material.
Pakistan's current installed capacity is around 19,845 MW, of which around 20% is hydroelectric. Much of the rest is thermal, fueled primarily by gas and oil. Per capita energy consumption of the country is estimated at 14 million Btu, which is about the same as India's but only a fraction of other industrializing economies in the region such as Thailand and Malaysia, according to the US Dept of Energy 2006 report. To put it in perspective, the world average per capita energy use is about 65 million BTUs and the average American consumes 352 million BTUs.
The electric power situation in India is not much better. The country is suffering its worst electricity crisis and it has become a key election issue in states like Karnataka and Maharashtra. Some major cities in India are facing alarming situations; continuous load shedding in Bangalore has led to diesel shortage as people are using diesel generators to deal with the crisis. Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Haryana are the worst hit by the ongoing crisis and they are facing power gaps of about 5,000MW, 1,000MW, 2000MW, 1,500MW respectively. In Maharashtra, state officials are asking industrial consumers to lower their demand by 10% or be ready to face forced load shedding (rolling blackouts). Cities and towns are facing 7 to 13 hours blackouts.
With 40% of the Pakistani households that have yet to receive electricity, and only 18% of the households that have access to pipeline gas, the energy sector is expected to play a critical role in economic and social development. With this growth comes higher energy consumption and stronger pressures on the country’s energy resources. At present, natural gas and oil supply the bulk (80 percent) of Pakistan’s energy needs. However, the consumption of those energy sources vastly exceeds the supply. For instance, Pakistan currently produces only 18.3 percent of the oil it consumes, fostering a dependency on expensive, imported oil that places considerable strain on the country’s financial position, creating growing budget and trade deficits. On the other hand, renewable energyfrom hydro, wind and solar are perhaps underutilized and underdeveloped today, as Pakistan has ample potential to exploit these resources.
Pakistan has vast reserves of coal. But there is very little energy produced by burning coal. China has now agreed to invest about $600 million for setting up an integrated coal mining-cum-power project in Sindh. The project will produce 180 million tons of coal per year, which is sufficient to fuel the proposed 405 MW power plant. Pakistan is currently world's seventh largest coal-producing country, with coal reserves of more than 185 billion tons (second in the world after U.S.A.'s 247 billion tons). Almost all (99 percent) of Pakistan's coal reserves are found in the province of Sindh. Pakistan's largest coal field is Thar coal field which is spread over an area of 9100 square kilometers, and contains 175 billion tons of coal. So far this coal field has not been developed but efforts are underway.
In addition to the coal project, China has agreed to build several other power plants in Pakistan to help the South Asian nation deal with its worsening electricity crisis. When completed over the next several years, these plants, including Nandipur (425 MW, Thermal), Guddu(800 MW, Thermal) and Neelam-Jhelum(1000 MW, Hydro), Chashma (1200 MW, Nuclear) will add more than 3000 MW of power generating capacity for the energy-hungry country. Pakistan is currently facing a deficit of 4,000 to 5,000 megawatts, resulting in extensive load-shedding (rolling blackouts) of several hours a day.
China has already installed a 325-megawatt nuclear power plant (C1) at Chashma and is currently working on another (C2) of the same capacity that is expected to be online by 2010. The agreements for C3 and C4 have also been signed. The United States has objected to China supplying C3 and C4 on the grounds that any Pak-China nuclear cooperation would require consensus approval by the NSG, of which China is now a member, for any exception to the guidelines. The US is applying double standards since it supported and got approval for such an exception from NSG for its own nuclear deal with India.
Beyond the power generation capacity expansion projects, Pakistan must also pay attention to modernizing its national grid. The country's creaky and outdated electricity infrastructure loses over 30 percent of generated power in transit, more than seven times the losses of a well-run system, according to the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank; and a lack of spare high-voltage grid capacity limits the transmission of power from hydroelectric plants in the north to make up for shortfalls in the south.
The current power crisis has given a significant impetus for serious efforts to develop a series of power projects. With so many projects in the pipeline, it can be expected that there is relief on the way for the electricity deprived nation in not too distant a future. In rural areas in particular, Pakistan has a better chance of meeting the UN Millennium Development Goals by building infrastructure projects and providing energy and water for development.
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* Gilani says 24 similar projects underway
* Hopes mid-term renewable energy policy document will get cabinet’s approval
JHIMPIR: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani on Sunday inaugurated Pakistan’s first-ever wind energy scheme – the 50-megawatt ‘Zorlu Energy Wind Power Project’ – and said the government has created a fund to mainstream and implement alternative energy technologies in the country.
“The fund will be used partially to finance economically viable projects … and for the much-needed capacity building of the renewable energy sector,” said Gilani at the inauguration – which was attended by Sindh Governor Dr Ishratul Ibad, Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah, Federal Minister for Water and Power Raja Pervaiz Ashraf and the water and power secretary.
The prime minister said that the Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) – in collaboration with public and private stakeholders – had prepared a mid-term renewable energy policy document. He said the policy focussed on creating a feasible environment for power generation through renewable energy means in the country. “I hope the policy will be submitted to the cabinet and approved soon,” he said.
“The launch of the Zorlu wind farm is, indeed, a major milestone towards exploiting the wind potential of renowned Gharo-Keti Bandar Wind Corridor. This 60 kilometre long and 170 kilometre deep corridor alone has the potential to generate over 50,000 megawatts of electricity,” he said.
The prime minister said the launch of the project had heralded the beginning of a new era in Pakistan.
“We are keen … to reduce dependence on imported fossil fuel, control environmental pollution and achieve sustainable energy security,” he added.
“I am proud to narrate that apart from the Zorlu wind farm, 24 other wind projects, with a cumulative capacity of 1,200 megawatts, are under way.”
He also praised the Zorlu Energy Group for its plan to expand the project to 250 megawatts. “This will also send a very strong signal … that Pakistan offers great opportunities to do business and investment.” app
ISLAMABAD: As Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) completes 28 per cent work on the 969MW Neelum-Jhelum Hydropower Project, the cost of which has gone up from Rs84 billion to Rs333 due to inordinate delay, Pakistan is pushing China to release the promised $500 million loan to bridge the shortfall of funds.
The cost of the project has increased after it was redesigned in the wake of the 2005 earthquake. Work on the project is progressing but the shortfall of funds and issues in land acquisition are still problems that need to be addressed to complete the project.
Wapda has also had to procure two Tunnel Boring Machines (TBMs) at the cost of Rs17 billion to overcome the delay of two and half years. “We will be able to reduce implementation time by two years by using TBMs that are expected to reach Karachi by January 25, 2012,” sources said.
Average completion level on the project is 28%. Some areas are progressing better, like the powerhouses, which are at 40% completion.
In the powerhouse, four turbines with a capacity of 242MW each will be set up. A separate plant of 45MW will also be set up at the diversion tunnel which was completed on October 15. A total of 60 kilometres of tunnels have to be completed including 35.6 kilometres of tunnels needed to push water to drive the turbines.
“As much as 17 kilometres have been completed,” sources said adding that work was underway on the coffer dam that is expected to be completed by February next year.
Sources said that a consortium of six banks including Exim Bank of China is providing financing for the project. “We are pushing Exim Bank of China to extend a $500 million loan to bridge the shortfall of funds,” sources said adding that other banks in the consortium were also being asked to extend additional $700 to $800 million loans.
The project cost has escalated on different accounts including Rs38 billion due as interest on loan, Rs45 billion on account of depreciation of rupee against dollar, from Rs45 to Rs86. Further cost increases were because of rate of land acquisition and procurement of two TBMs that cost Rs17 billion.
The government is to procure total 3,900 kanals of land out of which about 68 kanals is still outstanding, including the crucial portion of about 18 kanals for which payment of Rs1.2 billion has already been made to the AJK government.
“Despite payment, local people are reluctant to hand over land which may further delay the completion of the project,” sources added.
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan 12/20/11 (PennWell) -- Star Hydro Power Limited has been awarded a loan worth US$60 by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) for construction of the 147-MW Patrind hydropower plant in Pakistan.
The $409 million run-of-river project will be the largest privately financed hydroelectric facility in the country when it is completed in 2016, according to an IFC release.
Other investors include the Islamic Development Bank, the Export-Import Bank of Korea and the Asian Development Bank.
ADB previously announced a pledge of $97 million to the project in October 2011.
The project will be located between the Kunhar and Jhelum rivers near Muzaffarabad.
JEDDAH: The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) has signed a $60 million lease finance deal with Pakistan for the development of the Patrind Hydropower Project.
The agreement was signed by Ahmed Al-Hariri, manager, country operations division, Southeast Asia and Farouk Javed, CEO, Star Hydropower Limited in Islamabad.
The power plant is expected to be completed by 2016 and add 147 MW of power to the country’s national grid, helping the Asian country increase utilization of its renewable resources and generate power in an economically sustainable manner to reduce dependency on imported fuel.
“The project represents 100 percent foreign direct investment (FDI) in the country. After 30 years concession period the project will be handed over to the government of Pakistan,” a statement on the South Asian News Agency (SANA) said.
According to data from the IDB, Pakistan is the second-largest beneficiary of IDB financing.
Since the bank’s inception in the mid-1970’s the multi-lender has committed $7.6 billion including 85 projects worth $2.2 billion mainly in the transportation and power-generation sectors to the country.
In addition to the financing being committed by the IDB, funding is also being provided by the Export-Import Bank of Korea, the Asian Development Bank and the International Finance Corporation for a total injection of nearly $400 million for the project.
The project, according to a study carried out by its sponsors, Star Hydropower Limited, will call for the resettlement of 28 residences in the small village of Patrind on the Kumhar River.
“In Pakistan the increasing demand for electric power is now outstripping the supply. The gap between supply and demand has resulted in load shedding, causing serious setback to national economy. To close this gap, different possibilities for electrical power generation have been identified including a series of hydropower projects,” the report stated.
Pakistan and Asian Development Bank (ADB) has singed two loan agreements worth of $513.24 million that included $270 million for the tranche-2 of the Punjab Irrigated Agriculture Investment Programme (PIAIP) and $243.24 million for tranche-3 of the Power Transmission Enhancement Investment Programme.
Secretary Irrigation Department Punjab and Country Director Asian Development Bank in Pakistan have signed the first agreement of "Punjab Irrigated Agriculture Investment Programme (PIAIP) Tranche-II". This agreement aims at sustainable improved delivery of services for irrigated agriculture and better water management in Punjab. The project aims to provide reliable irrigation supplies to the Lower Chenab Canal Command area.
According to the agreement this project would include construction of a new barrage complex to be located approximately 275 meters downstream of the exiting Khanki Headwork on the river Chenab, which new barrage complex shall include a main weir and under sluice; gats and hosting arrangements; and operating deck and access road bridge. Construction of a canal head regulator adjacent to the new barrage and a lead channel to the existing lower Chenab canal and the dismantling of the existing Khanki Headwork and provision of implementation support to the project executing agency for construction supervision and management expenses of PMO barrage. The project is expected to be completed by the 30th June 2016. Secretary Economic Affairs Division and Country Director Asian Development Bank in Pakistan singed the second agreement Power Transmission Enhancement Investment Programme tracnhe-III.
This agreement targets to enhance the efficiency of the overall power transmission system and to provide an adequate and reliable power supply to a greater number of commercial, industrial and residential consumers. The projects shall comprise following, a new 600km 500 KV transmission line from Jahmshoro to Moro, Daudu and Rahim Yar Khan, a new 500 KV grid stations a Moro and expansion/ augmentation of 3 existing 500 KV grid stations at Jamshoro. Dadu and Rahim Yar Khan. A new 125 KM 220 KV transmission line from UCH-II power plant to the 220-grid station at Sibbi, and a connection between the UCH-I and UCH-II power plants. A new 200 KV grid station at Mansehra and procurement of transmission system equipment. This project is expected to be completed by 31st December 2015.
“WAPDA is also working on projects that will generate 35,500 MW of hydroelectricity including 22,800 MW run of the river projects,” WAPDA Chairman Sahkeel Durrani said.
“We are committed to ensure that Pakistan takes full advantage of its hydroelectricity production potential,” he said.
The first unit of 96 MW hydropower project at Jinnah Barrage has already been commissioned and it would start operating on full capacity by the end of this year, he said.
Durrani said that the 121 MW Allai Khwar project at Battagram is almost complete and would start generating power within few months.
“Duber Khwar - a 130 MW hydroelectric project at Kohistan, is scheduled to generate full power by December 2012,” he added. In addition Satpara Dam is generating 17.36 MW of hydroelectricity.
The 72 MW Khan Khwar hydropower project in 2011 is already generating its installed capacity, Durrani said.
“This is a humble contribution of WAPDA to reduce the gap between demand and supply of electricity,” he said.
Work on high capacity hydroelectricity projects is in full swing. He said the feasibility study and detailed engineering and design of 7,100 MW Bunji project in Gilgit Baltistan has been completed and is currently under review of WAPDA experts.
He said feasibility study of Dasu Dam in Khyber Pakhtunkwa has been completed. This dam he added would store 1.15 million acres of water and produce 4320 MW hydro electricity. “Consultants for preparation of detailed design and tender documents have been mobilized,” he added.
“Hydroelectric power projects having the potential to recover cost in short time are darlings of world donor agencies,” he said. Finances for such projects are available with much ease than other power projects.
There are 17 run of the river power generation sites that have been identified by WAPDA experts and work on the feasibility studies on most of them have been initiated.
These include some high power potential projects like 2100 MW Tungas, 2800 MW Yulbo at Sakurdu, 2800 MW Thakott at Besham and 2800 Patan at Patan.
He expressed confidence that the speed of work at Neelum Jehlum Hydroelectric Project would accelerate as the high tech tunnel boring machines have arrived at site. He said this would help WAPDA to complete the 969 MW power project on schedule in 2016.
Durrani said the 496 MW Lower Spat Gah; 665 MW Lower Palas Valley; and 600 MW Mahl; run of the river projects would be completed under Public Private Partnership. He hoped that the private sector would come forwards to grab this lucrative opportunity.
Chairman Water and Power Development Authority hoped that resources for 896 MW Tarbela (extension) and 1401 MW Munda Dam would be soon mobilized. Munda with a storage capacity of 1.3 million acres feet (MAF) would also act as buffer against floods in Khyber Pakhtumkhwa.
He said Mangla raising would add 2.88 MAF of water in the reservoirs. He said 34 MAF additional water storage would be available after completion of Munda Dam, Dasu Dam, Gomasl Zam Dam and Satpara Dam. He said Diamer Basha and Khurram Tungi Dam - both of which are ready for construction would add 9.3 MAF in water reservoirs.
He said the current water storage capacity in the country is 11.91 MAF after depletion of 4.37 MAF due to silting in the existing dams.
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan desperately needs $704 million to complete the strategic Neelum-Jehlum hydropower project on time as the current available capital is only enough for four to five months, sources in the ministry of water and power told The News.
“The cost of the project has swelled to over Rs333 billion for which the Planning Commission is evaluating the revised PC-1 of the project which will be given approval by Executive Committee of National Economic Council (Ecnec),” a senior official, who is directly involved in the project, said.
“Pakistan needs a credit line at any cost to maintain the ongoing pace of construction of the project, otherwise project would get delayed,” the official added.
If the project is not completed on time by 2016, India would find itself in a better position to first complete the Kishan-Ganga hydropower project on the Neelum River in the held Kashmir.
Under the Water Treaty, the country which completes the project first on Neelum river will have the first water priority rights. Pakistan is already in a legal battle at the International Court of Arbitration in Hague against India over faulty design of the Indian project.
Keeping in view the strategic emergency of the project, the official said, Pakistan needs $704 million and in this regard the government is under dialogue with various donor countries.
“China has already committed $483 million loan, but it has delayed the disbursement of the credit line,” the official said and added that the Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani is scheduled to visit Beijing some time this month and top priority of the agenda of the premier is to ensure the credit line from the EXIM Bank of China.
“Similarly, Islamic Development Bank has also committed $326 million for the project and the authorities in Pakistan are seeking additional $255 million.”
Moreover, the Saudi Development Fund has also committed $80 million but authorities are asking them to increase the credit line to up to $230 million, the official said. However, negotiations to this effect between Pakistan and Saudi Arab are underway. The UAE has also committed $100 million. The OPEC Fund has also indicated to extend $31 million which may go up to $80 million.
Chinese EXIM Bank, after a long delay, has now approved $450 million loan to finance 969MW Neelum Jhelum hydropower project, which would add about 5.15 billion units of cheap electricity to the national grid every year by 2016.Well-placed official sources informed TheNation that Chinese EXIM Bank after a long delay has now approved $450 million loan to finance the Neelum Jhelum hydropower project located near Muzaffarabad adding that the Economic Affair Division (EAD) has also gotten an approval from the Chinese bank in this regard. They told that the Neelum-Jhelum hydropower project needed $700 million foreign funding to complete the project by 2016. The major financiers of the project include the Kuwait Fund, the Export Import Bank of China, the government of the UAE and the Saudi Fund for Development. Sources further told that project had originally been budgeted to cost Rs130 billion, but costs had witnessed skyrocketed rise by 154per cent to Rs330 billion. In the revised plan submitted by the water and power ministry, the main reason for the spike in costs was attributed to a change in design, but a detailed examination of the figures has shown that primary cause for the increase was delay in completion. Sources further told that more than 30per cent of the work on the project had been completed. The project would earn about Rs45 billion in revenues annually and would therefore be able to recover its cost of construction within seven years.It is also learnt that as the Chinese EXIM bank found hesitant to release the worthy amount since 2009 resultantly the delay for unknown reasons had caused the cost of the project to rise to Rs330 billion ($3.7 billion). It was also feared that the pace of construction might slowdown providing an edge to India, which had been building Kishanganga project on the same Neelum River on its side of Kashmir because if Pakistan failed to complete its project before India, then it might lose the water rights to the upper riparian country. Further, according to Indus Water Treaty (IWT), the country that first completes its project on Neelum tributary will have the priority rights on the water of Neelum River. Furthermore, the Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project Company (NJHPC), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Water and Power Development Authority was set up to manage this very project.It is to be noted here that the top man of China had committed this loan during the visit of President Asif Ali Zardari to Beijing in 2009 but the Chinese Exim bank did not entrain Pakistan although three years have elapsed since the commitment of China to Pakistan resultantly the country was in contact with Islamic Development Bank, Saudi Development Bank, Abu Dhabi Fund, Kuwait Fund for the required finding. Even IDB had committed $200 million, Saudi Fund $337 million, Abu Dhabi Fund $100 million and Kuwait Fund $30 million and the government was pursing the said donors to expedite the disbursement of their credit line for the timely completion of the project.Waqar Masood Secretary Economic Affairs Division while confirming the information pertaining the receiving of approval worth of $450 million loan to help finance the 969-megawatt Neelum Jhelum hydropower project. He also informed that documentation process in this regard would take one month while disbursement of such a hefty amount is likely within one-month....
Pakistan is suffering from chronic electricity shortages that are producing blackouts of up to 16 hours per day and negatively affecting the country's industry.
Seeking foreign assistance to alleviate the power shortages, Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari has urged his government to assist hydroelectric electricity projects being developed in conjunction with China's Three Gorges Corp.
Zardari instructed government officials to intensify cooperation with the Three Gorges Corp. following a meeting with a Chinese delegation headed by China's Three Gorges Corp. Senior Vice President Wang Shaofeng, The Express Tribune reported Thursday.
Zardari's spokesman, Sen. Farhatullah Babar, said the projects being undertaken with assistance from Three Gorges Corp. could add roughly 2,500 megawatts of electricity into Pakistan's national grid system.
In addition to the approximately 1,950 megawatts generated by hydroelectricity, China's Three Gorges Corp. would assist Pakistan in producing the rest through wind and solar projects.
Following the signing of an agreement with the government of Pakistan for providing $840 million for the 1,410-megawatt Tarbela 4th Extension Project, the World Bank has also agreed to extend financial assistance to the 4,320MW Dasu Hydropower Project.
It has also been agreed that the project will be constructed in phases after work on the 4,500MW Diamer-Bhasha Dam is initiated and its financial plan is finalised.
Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) Chairman Shakil Durrani stated this while presiding over a meeting here at the Wapda House to discuss the report submitted by an international panel of experts.
Addressing the meeting, the Wapda chairman said international financial institutions were taking keen interest in providing funds for Wapda projects due to excellent ‘economic internal rate of return’ (EIRR) of these schemes.
The Dasu project is part of the least-cost energy production plan of Wapda aimed at harnessing the country’s hydropower resources to improve the share of hydroelectricity in energy mix.
The project will be constructed on the Indus River, seven km upstream of Dasu village and 74 km downstream of Diamer-Bhasha Dam. The project is situated on the Karakoram Highway, about 350 km from Islamabad.
According to a statement issued by Wapda, the priority is to construct Diamer-Bhasha Dam for which land acquisition process has already started and 13 contracts for offices, colonies and roads have been awarded.
Dasu Hydropower Project will follow the initiation of work on Diamer-Bhasha Dam. Detailed engineering design, for which the World Bank is providing funds, and tender documents are likely to be completed in early 2013. Afterwards, construction work will commence.
The project will generate 21.3 billion units of electricity per annum and will also have positive impact on existing hydropower stations including Tarbela, Ghazi Barotha and Chashma.
LAHORE: The European Union (EU) has provided 1.2 million Euros as grant to conduct climate change impact assessment study in Swat basin for Munda Dam multipurpose project, located in Mohmand Agency of the Federally Administered Areas (FATA).
A joint venture comprising two renowned firms namely AHT of Germany and NESPAK of Pakistan has also been appointed as consultants to carry out the studies, said Raghib Shah, Chairman of Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) here Sunday.
He said Munda Dam project was of immense importance for socio-economic development and poverty alleviation, as it would ensure water for irrigated agriculture, control floods and generate low-cost hydel electricity.
Thanking the EU for its support, he said, the grant would help implement this vital project.
At present, detailed engineering design and the tender documents of Munda Dam project were being prepared, for which French development agency AFD had committed to provide 11 million Euros to WAPDA, he maintained.
Underlining the need of foreign assistance for completion of the projects, he hoped that the EU would also provide financial support for construction phase of Munda Dam project.
The Chairman said that Munda Dam Project would store 1.29 million acre feet (MAF) of water for irrigation, while power generation capacity stands at 740 mega watt (MW), contributing about 2.4 billion units of electricity to the national grid every year.
Benefits of the project have been estimated at Rs. 20.2 billion per annum, he added.
1. ET on Gomal Zam Dam:
ISLAMABAD: The Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) iss working on a number of large and medium-sized dams in the federally administered tribal areas (Fata) including the Gomal Zam Dam in South Waziristan and the project was likely to be completed by end of January.
Official sources told APP here on Thursday that the hydropower component of the dam had already been completed, while progress on the irrigation and flood protection component of the project was almost near completion.
Gomal Zam Dam is being constructed in the Khjori Kach area of South Waziristan, over the Gomal River which iss also one of the significant tributaries of Indus River. The dam will irrigate 163,086 acres of barren land of Tank and districts of Dera Ismail Khan.
The dam will have a gross live storage of water of 1.14 million acre feet (MAF), whereas 0.36 MAF of perennial and flood flow of the Gomal River will provide irrigation water to barren lands.
A small power plant was installed at the foot of the dam. Designed by an Italian company, the plant will produce 17.4 megawatts of power.
The multipurpose project will boost development in the remote area by enhancing irrigation, controlling flash floods and producing economical electricity. The dam was initially conceived in the late 1800s for meeting the water needs of Dera Ismail Khan.
2. ET on Kurram Tangi Dam:
LAHORE: Work on Kurram Tangi Dam, a multi-purpose project in North Waziristan Agency, is set to kick off in the next two months, with the Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) needing swift handover of land and effective security arrangements.
Briefing Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Governor Barrister Masood Kausar, Wapda Chairman Syed Raghib Shah revealed that the project had been divided into three components for effective implementation.
Construction work on the first component will be initiated in March this year. In this phase, a weir, two canals covering an area of more than 16,000 acres, two power houses of about 19 megawatts and a 132-kilovolt transmission line will be constructed. Annual benefits of the first component have been estimated at about Rs1.7 billion.
Shah asked the governor to help in early handover of land to Wapda and ensure effective security arrangements.
He said the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) had expressed interest in providing funds for the first component. An environment assessment study is also underway to pave the way for the financing....
US Ambassador Richard Olson reiterated on Tuesday the commitment of the United States to extend full help and cooperation in resolving the energy crisis faced by Pakistan.
Addressing a function here at Tarbela Dam project, along with Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) Chairman Syed Raghib Abbas Shah to recognise the completion of the US funded Tarbela Dam restoration project the US ambassador said, “The United States understands that Pakistan is facing an energy crisis and we are committed to doing our part.”
The restoration of three generators at Tarbela added 128 megawatts of power to the national grid.
He said, “The work completed here at Tarbela contributes enough electricity to supply two million customers, and helps provide relief to those suffering from extensive power shortages.”
Wapda Chairman Syed Raghib Abbas Shah appreciated the support of the United States to the energy sector in Pakistan.
The US Agency for International Development (USAID) provided $16.5 million to the Pakistan Wapda to repair three power generation units and to train Tarbela’s staff to operate the upgraded equipment to increase production of electricity at Tarbela.
Relieving Pakistan’s energy crisis is a top priority for US assistance to Pakistan, said Olson.
In addition to Tarbela, the United States is also funding other high impact projects, such as the rehabilitation of the Mangla dam, and renovation of thermal plants at Jamshoro, Guddu, and Muzaffagarh, which have already added over 650 megawatts since October 2009.
The US government is also co-financing the completion of the Gomal Zam and Satpara dams which will add another 35 megawatts and irrigate more than 200,000 acres.
Finally, the US is helping to replace thousands of highly inefficient agricultural and municipal water pumps throughout the country to save additional megawatts.
These projects are expected to add 900 megawatts to the national power grid by the end of 2013, enough energy to power two million households and businesses.
ISLAMABAD, March 20 -- Government would complete the Neelum Jhleum Hydro project, Golen Gol and Dubair Khawar hydro projects within the stipulated time frame and resolve the issues related to any project.
This assurance was given by the Secretary Water and Power, Sikander Ahmed Rai while chairing a meeting with visiting Joint Supervisory Mission (JSM) of lead financers of three hydro power projects here today.
The consortium includes representatives from Islamic Development Bank, Saudi Fund Development, Kuwait Fund Development and Opec. The meeting was also attended by additional Secretary Ministry of Water and Power, Chairman Wapda and senior officials of Neelum Jheluim project, Golen Gol and Dubair Khawar project and ministry of Water and Power.
Secretary water and Power said that the government has also allocated the funds for the projects and financial support of the donors would help to complete the project in time. He said that the progress on three projects being reviewed and monitored regularly. Pakistan is facing energy shortage and timely completion of these projects would help to bridge the gap between demand and supply. He also thanked the delegation for visiting Pakistan to review the progress of the projects.
Earlier, the Chairman Wapda briefed the JSM that KhanKhawar hydro project of 72 MW and Allai Khawar Projects of 122 MW have been completed. While the remaining three projectsw of 1205 MW would be completed as per their schedule. Dubair Khawar project would be completed by June this year. Neelum Jhelum Hydro project of 969 MW by 2016 and Golen Gol project of 106 MW would be completed by 2015. He also informed that the Government has recently approved Rs 24 billionfor for Neelum Jhelum Project. He said that 47 % work on tunnel boring has been completed on Neelum Jhelum project.
The JSM appreciated the progress on three projects and stated that the consortium of financers would continue its support for energy projects. The JSM would also visit the sites of all the three projects to review the progress
China confirmed this week it will sell a new 1,000-megawatt nuclear reactor to Pakistan that the United States says would violate Beijing’s obligations under a nuclear supplier control group.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei was asked Monday about a report in the Free Beacon March 22 that first disclosed the secret agreement for the reactor reached last month in Beijing between the China National Nuclear Corp. and the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission.
“China has noted the relevant report,” Hong told reporters in Beijing.
Normally, Chinese government spokesmen deny such reports and label them “groundless” as a way to avoid comment. The spokesman’s use of the phrase “noted the relevant report” is unusual and a tacit admission the report is accurate.
U.S. intelligence and diplomatic officials privately said the agreement was reached in Beijing during a visit by a high-level Pakistani delegation of nuclear industry officials from Feb. 15 to 18.
The Chinese at the meeting urged Pakistan to keep the deal secret to avoid expected international opposition by states that say the sale violates China’s commitment to the Nuclear Suppliers Group, a 46-member association aimed at preventing the spread of nuclear weapons.
China agreed in 2004 not to sell additional reactors to Pakistan’s Chashma nuclear facility beyond the two reactors that began operating in 2000 and 2011.
However, Hong denied the sale violates the voluntary NSG guidelines.
“The cooperation between China and Pakistan does not violate relevant principles of the Nuclear Suppliers Group,” he said. “In recent years, China and Pakistan do indeed carry out some joint projects related to civilian use of nuclear energy. These projects are for peaceful purpose only, in compliance with the international obligations shared by both countries, and they are subject to guarantee and monitor by international atomic energy organization.”
However, U.S. intelligence officials said the China National Nuclear Corp. (CNNC) is Beijing’s main nuclear weapons producer and is working to modernize Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal in addition to the civilian reactor construction at Chashma.
China also is working to develop Pakistan’s nuclear fuel reprocessing capabilities, the officials said....
KARACHI: Pakistan’s first private hydropower IPP established by Hub Power Company (Hubco) has commenced commercial operations.
An announcement here on Monday said that Pakistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir’s first private Independent Power Producer (IPP) Laraib Energy Limited- the 84 MW New Bong Hydropower Project, has commenced commercial operations. It said that the Hub Power Company (Hubco) subsidiary, Laraib Energy Limited, was successfully commissioned on March 23.
The project will contribute 540 GWh of green energy annually into the National Grid under a 25 year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with National Transmission and Despatch Company (NTDC).
Speaking onthe occasion, CEO Hubco Zafar Iqbal Sobani said, ‘This project will provide cheaper electricity and energy security to the country. Other benefits of the run-of-the river NBE HPP include replacement of some 135,000 tons of oil import valued in excess of US$ 100 million per annum and reduction in carbon emissions’.
The project was scheduled to be completed in 42 months, but was completed two months earlier; comparing three similar low-head hydropower projects on the Ohio River, USA totalling 191 MW started a year before NBE but still have a year to begin commercial operations.
Hubco has thanked the successive Governments of Pakistan as well as the Azad Government of the State of Jammu and Kashmir, the Private Power and Infrastructure Board, WAPDA as well as NTDC, for their support and lending massive experience in hydropower.
Hubco also acknowledged the important part played by the AJ&K Private Power Cell of the AJ&K Hydroelectric Board in the project’s long development journey.
The Asian Development Bank and other lending banks, multilaterals IDB, IFC and Proparco France and two domestic commercial banks NBP and HBL played a very pro-active and constructive role in structuring the project and the finance documents, thus making this pioneering project a reality, it was further pointed out.
Financing from the French Development Agency will allow for the construction of a pair of hydroelectric projects that will add a combined 785 MW of power to Pakistan's grid.
The US$141.9 million credit facility agreement will help develop the 740-MW Munda and 35-MW Harpo hydropower plants, located in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Gilgit Baltistan regions, respectively.
Pakistan's Ministry of Water and Power assigned the Munda Dam project to Pakistan's Water and Power Development Authority in 2010 for detailed engineering design and construction. It was decided in 2007 that Munda would be a multi-purpose project, to supply water for irrigation, to mitigate flooding, and to generate power.
The European Union also sought pre-qualification in April 2012 to perform a climate change adaptation study and an impact assessment study of the project, which will be built on Pakistan's Swat River.
Meanwhile, HydroWorld.com reported in January that the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development had agreed to provide Pakistan a $27.3 million loan for the Harpo project via the KfW Development Bank.
Pakistan's Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) began sought expressions of interest for engineering design and tender preparation for the plant in May 2009.
Harpo will be located on the Harpo Lungma River, which is a tributary of the Indus River.
WASHINGTON- June 10, 2014- The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved on Tuesday a financing package from the International Development Association (IDA), the World Bank Group’s grant and low-interest arm, to help expand hydro-electricity generation in Pakistan through the development of the Dasu Hydropower Stage-I Project (DHP-I). The package consists of an IDA Credit of $588.4 million and an IDA Partial Credit Guarantee (PCG) of $460 million to help mobilize commercial financing for the project.
DHP-I would have 2,160 megawatt (MW) hydropower plant on the main Indus River, which can be expanded to 4,320 MW in future with low additional cost. The project, in addition to facilitating growth and development in Pakistan, will also help build the Water and Power Development Authority’s (WAPDA) capacity to harness the vast hydropower resources of the country in a sustainable manner.
“Dasu Hydropower Project is important for helping the people of Pakistan to reduce their carbon footprint and make electric power generation more sustainable,", said Rachid Benmessaoud, World Bank Country Director for Pakistan. “The program is an important part of the transformational energy initiative of Pakistan, in which the support from across the World Bank Group is focused on helping Pakistan's energy sector out of its crisis and onto a more sustainable path that supports economic growth.”
DHP-I is a run-of-river project located on the Indus River about 240 km upstream from the Tarbela dam, close to Dasu town, in Kohistan district. It is an important element of the government’s strategy to restore Pakistan’s energy sector to a role that will effectively support long-term economic growth. It is a strategic investment that: (i) improves energy security and affordability through a structural shift to a low cost, low carbon fuel mix and reduced cost of electricity generation; (ii) reduces the sector deficit and saves foreign exchange of the Government of Pakistan by displacing high cost imported fuel; and (iii) builds the institutional capacity of WAPDA to harness the hydropower potential of the country in a sustainable manner, in particular the development of the Indus Cascade; and (iv) provides a financing and investment model that can be followed for other large hydropower projects in Pakistan.
The direct beneficiaries of DHP would be the millions of energy users, including industry, households and farmers who would get more electricity at lower cost and suffer fewer blackouts. The project would provide more electricity during the summer months when capacity shortages are most severe. Non-users would benefit indirectly because of higher productivity and employment, particularly in the industrial sector.
“Dasu Hydropower Project will kick start the development of the Indus Cascade that is crucial for reducing the overall cost of electricity generation based on domestic resources,” said Masood Ahmad, Task Team Leader and Lead Water Resource Specialist. “The Project would provide benefits to most sectors of the economy in Pakistan, and the population as a whole would benefit directly or indirectly.”
The DHP-I cost is estimated at about $4.2 billion and the financing plan consists of IDA credits, IDA Partial Credit Guarantees and contributions from WAPDA and the NTDC. This is the first attempt by the World Bank Group to finance a large infrastructure project on a sequential basis through a combination of credits and guarantees to mobilize the full financing over the construction period. The credit is financed from the International Development Association (IDA), the World Bank Group’s grant and low-interest arm. It will be on standard IDA terms, with a maturity of 25 years, including a grace period of 5 years.
Both the US officials – including US Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Dr Rajiv Shah and US Special Representative Dan Feldman – and Pakistan’s Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar and Minister for Water & Power Khawaja Muhammad Asif, who is also defence minister, highlighted tremendous opportunities for American and international investors in the ‘transformational’ power generation and water storage project.
The officials spoke at a joint platform that brought together senior leaders and experts and business leaders at the US Chamber of Commerce at a meeting, co-hosted by the USAID and the US-Pakistan Business Council. Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States Jalil Abbas Jilani and US Ambassador in Islamabad Richard Olson participated in the daylong conference, spread over several sessions.
Pakistan needs 10,000MW of power to meet its rapidly growing domestic, industrial and agrarian requirements. The materialisation of Diamer-Bhasha dam will be a giant step in that quest.
Besides producing 4,500MW of power, the dam will help with four million acre of water for irrigation, save millions from flash flooding, boost other hydro projects and contribute vitally to extending life of Tarbela Dam by 30 years.
The Obama administration officials assured the investors of effective results, citing results from US-financed energy up-gradating projects in Pakistan.
“We know that success can take hold,” Dr Shah said in reference to completion of small projects and addition to power generation capacity of large dams.
Daniel Feldman said the US and Pakistan have a wide-ranging strategic partnership and that Washington is in for a long-term economic and investment relationship with Pakistan, particularly in the energy field. “Investment in Diamer-Bhasha dam is the smartest choice for Pakistan,” Feldman remarked, reiterating the White House and Secretary John Kerry’s commitment to back economic and energy security of Pakistan.
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s government is committed to encouraging foreign investment in various sectors of the economy and is crystal clear that the country needs both the Dasu and Bhasha dams. “We have demonstrated our commitment – and acquired land from own indigenous resources,” he added.
He apprised the meeting of government’s robust economic agenda, saying Islamabad has stemmed the economic downslide it inherited and now exports, GDP rate, remittances, revenue collection and industrial growth, have all registered marked growth.
“Despite demonstrations in Islamabad, the rupee has been fairly staying at stable exchange rate, while inflation has also been checked,” he added. Senator Dar said the government has paid off circular debt it had inherited from the previous administration.
Khawaja Asif said Washington’s support for the vital Diamer-Bhasha dam would cement the relationship between the two countries.
Published information indicates 93% of the project’s funding is through CTGC and the remaining 7% from Pakistan-based Associated Technologies (Private) Ltd. The National Transmission and Dispatch Company Ltd. (NTDC) of Pakistan plan to complete the project by 2020.
Karot Power Co. (Private) Ltd. will operate the run-of-river hydroelectric power plant, which includes an underground powerhouse that will generate electricity from four 183-MW Francis turbine units. The powerhouse will be located in the province of Punjab and the Karot Dam, a concrete gravity dam, will be built on the Jhelum River.
Initially, Pakistan’s Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) planned the scheme, but the project was privatized and taken over by the Private Power Infrastructure Board (PPIB), which then subsequently granted operation responsibility to Karot Power Co. (Private) Ltd.
PPIB has authority to "handle" the operation of 12 hydroelectric power projects in Pakistan, according to the agency.
PPIB said the project is expected to generate 3,436 GWh annually and connect to the government-owned National Grid of Pakistan, which is operated by WAPDA. WAPDA has a 30-year Power Purchase Agreement with NTDC.
According to Pakistan’s 2002 Power Generation Policy, private sector-developed hydroelectric projects must be developed on the basis of Build-Own-Operate-Transfer. In this case, NTDC must transfer to the government of Pakistan, free of charge, the Karot hydroelectric project after operating it for 30 years.
The Chinese government-owned CTG expressed an interest in financing projects in Pakistan in conjunction with the International Finance Corporation, a World Bank subsidiary. This disclosure was made at the meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Energy on June 18. The offer comes on top of the $46 billion in financing for power and transportation infrastructure being provided by the Chinese government and Chinese banks to Pakistan for the construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
If the offer pans out, it would make China the biggest financier of infrastructure in Pakistan by far. CTG owns and operates the Three Gorges Dam, the world’s largest hydroelectric power plant with a capacity of 22,500 megawatts, nearly matching in one power plant the entire installed capacity of the Pakistani grid of 23,500 MW.
Read: China-Pakistan Economic Corridor: Lines of development – not lines of divide
According to studies conducted by the Water and Power Development Authority, Pakistan has an identified potential of producing up to 60,000 MW of hydroelectric power, of which 40,000 MW is located in a region called the Indus Cascade, which begins in Skardu in Gilgit-Baltistan and runs through to Tarbela, the site of Pakistan’s biggest dam, in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
The biggest project the government has already identified and begun preliminary work on is the Diamer Bhasha dam, which would require $15 billion to construct and would have a nameplate capacity of 4,500 MW.
Pakistan’s energy sources have gone through cycles. Up until the 1980s, the bulk of electricity in Pakistan came from hydroelectric power. In 1994, as the country’s energy needs surged, the government initiated a policy to attract private investment in thermal electricity. Oil prices were low in that decade and so the government made the decision to use oil-fired power plants, a decision that proved costly when oil surged to $100 a barrel, prompting Islamabad to search for cheaper ways of producing electricity. Among those cheap ways is hydroelectric power and coal-fired thermal electricity.
Among other projects the government wants to seek Chinese financing for is the Neelum-Jhelum power project in Azad Kashmir. The 969 MW Neelum-Jhelum hydroelectric power project has been facing rising costs, mainly due to the delays caused by a lack of funding. The project was initially slated to cost $1.8 billion, but will now cost $4.2 billion due to the delays, a major cause of concern for its initial consortium of Middle Eastern financiers which included the Islamic Development Bank (IDB), the Kuwait Fund for Development (KFD), the Saudi Fund for Development and the OPEC Development Fund.
The government now expects to raise Rs100 billion ($1 billion) in local borrowing for the plant, in addition to $576 million in foreign borrowing. The government has approached the state-owned National Bank of Pakistan to arrange financing for the local currency component. The Middle Eastern lenders have so far committed $692 million, of which they have disbursed $260 million so far.
“The disbursement of the remaining $433 million has been stopped by the lenders as they are demanding that the contractors should provide performance guarantee for the additional work (variation orders) and cost escalation,” said one source familiar with the cabinet’s deliberations on the matter.
WAPDA issued a solicitation in 2013 for pre-qualification to refurbish and upgrade Units 5 and 6 at Mangla to increase installed capacity of the units to 135 MW from 100 MW. It took bids last year to supply generator step-up transformers and to refurbish powerhouse cranes for Mangla, on Pakistan's Jhelum River. The U.S. Congress released US$280 million in 2012 to support improvements to Mangla and the 83-MW Kurram Tangi project.
In the current solicitation, WAPDA invites expressions of interest from consultants to supervise upgrade and refurbishment of Units 1-6 at Mangla.
The 5th Extension -- an addition to the 3,480-MW Tarbela plant -- is being developed by the Water and Power Development Authority. WAPDA extended its deadline for expressions of interest for project preparation and design of the 5th Extension in August.
The 5th Extension would use an existing irrigation tunnel extending from the original plant. Its predecessor, the 1,410-MW 4th Extension, also uses an irrigation tunnel and is currently under construction. WAPDA chair Zafar Mahmood urged completion of the 4th Extension by 2017 during a briefing session earlier this year.
HydroWorld.com reported in February that WAPDA had awarded a contract to Voith Hydro of Germany and Voith Hydro of Shanghai to supply electro-mechanical works for the 4th Extension.
Tarbela Dam, completed in 1974, was designed to store water from the Indus River for irrigation, flood control and the generation of hydroelectric power.
The 148 meter high, 3,000 meter long dam has two gated spillways and five tunnels that provide irrigation releases and power generation. At the time of construction the dam tunnels 1, 2 and 3 were scheduled for power generation and tunnels 4 and 5 were designed exclusively for irrigation release.
WAPDA is also in the process of repairing and upgrading the original plant.
In this picturesque village, perched above the gushing turquoise waters of the Hunza river, and with a view of the 8,000-metre Rakaposhi mountain, in Pakistan's Karakoram range, women once had to walk for miles to collect firewood each day.
For the last eight years, however, hydropower has supplied the village's energy needs, and life has gotten much easier, said Mehreen, who has an electric stove, electric oven and electric lights, fitted with energy-saving bulbs.
"With the availability of electricity we have been relieved of such burdensome work," she told the Thomson Reuters Foundation. "The initiative holds great meaning in our lives."
The village's community-run micro hydropower station - built in 2008 by the Aga Khan Rural Support Programme with backing from the United States Department of Agriculture and the Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund - produces about 190 kilowatts of electricity an hour.
That's enough to supply power to 144 homes in Ahmedabad and nearly 110 in the nearby villages of Sultanabad and Faizabad.
Such small-scale hydropower plants are proving a key way to provide power in remote, off-grid areas of power-short Pakistan, while at the same time helping protect the environment.
MORE TREES, LESS RISK
Besides making life easier for people in the villages, in Pakistan's Gilgit-Baltistan province, hydropower has slowed deforestation - rampant in many mountain areas of Pakistan - and cut landslide risks as more trees are left standing to hold the soil, local people say.
"Now no one chops down trees to harvest fuelwood," said Ghulam Raza, an environmentalist who works in the area with a range of non-governmental organisations. As a result, natural forests in the mountains nearby "are coming back to life," he said.
Social development activist Ghulam Sarwar, who works for the Aga Khan Rural Support Programme, said hydropower has changed Ahmedabad from a village that "lived in darkness" to one where children can now study by electric light at night, and no longer miss school to help their families collect firewood.
"Now our children don't skip school. They find enough time at home to study and finish their schoolwork even after sunset," said Ali Gohar, a member of the community committee that maintains the hydropower plant.
Community leaders say if they can find the funding, they intend to expand the project and provide electricity to an additional 1,400 households in nearby Karimabad and Altit villages.
Shahana Khan, a development projects manager for the Aga Khan Rural Support Programme, said small-scale hydropower is a natural for mountain villages with access to rivers, and is a good way of ensuring access to clean energy.
A key, she said, is that such facilities "are owned, run and maintained by the communities."
Pakistan could generate around 100,000 megawatts of hydroelectricity, through both large and small hydropower projects, according to a 2006 report by the Pakistan Alternative Energy Development Board.
Sixty percent of that could come at spots identified in the river-rich, mountainous northwest of the country, it said.
Here's a China Daily report:
China has contracted to build a hydroelectric power project in Pakistan, with the first phase of investment reaching $2.5 billion.
China Gezhouba Group Co Ltd has agreed to invest more than $1.72 billion for the construction of the main works of the 5,400MW Dasu hydropower project in the country, cooperating with the local water and power development authority, the company said on Thursday.
According to Deng Yinqi, vice president of CGGC, a member company of the China Energy Engineering Corporation, the construction of the hydropower project is a significant milestone in Chinese construction going global.
Deng said: "CGGC has been involved with Pakistani construction works for years and the company is committed to continuously contributing to the local economy."
According to CGGC, the power project, situated in remote mountainous terrain in the Upper Indus valley in the district of Kohistan, in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province in northern Pakistan, is one of the most challenging hydroelectric power projects ever undertaken.
On completion it should be capable of generating 12 billion kilowatt hours annually, the company said.
The Chinese operator said the project would provide more than 8,000 jobs to local residents while helping the Pakistan government modernize and expand the energy sector of the country, shifting from thermal generated electricity to clean, low-cost high reward hydroelectricity.
The project, consisting of the main dam, affiliated facilities, a powerhouse, a residential complex and transmission lines, will also help boost the development of local industry, agriculture and tourism.
Chinese companies have branched out beyond their borders in recent years to become the biggest builders of hydropower projects worldwide, exporting its hydroelectric power know-how to developing countries.
Hydroelectricp projects require huge investment involving complex issues, especially when investing in projects overseas.
On the other hand, China's investment in clean energy would help reduce pollution, said Joseph Jacobelli, a senior analyst with Asia utilities and infrastructure research at Bloomberg Intelligence.
Yousuf Naseem Khokhar, Pakistan’s Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) secretary for Water and Power, and Chinese Ambassador in Pakistan, Sun Weidong, signed the MoU under the CPEC agreement during the Diamer-Bhasha Project Conference hosted by China’s National Energy Administration (NEA) in Beijing, China.
Under the MoU, China’s NEA would oversee building and funding the five hydropower projects that have an estimated total installed generation capacity of 22,320 MW and according to WAPDA, the Indus River has a potential of producing 40,000 MW.
The Indus River Cascade begins from Skardu in Gilgit-Baltistan and runs through Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, both located in the northwestern portion of Pakistan. Overall, Pakistan has identified a potential of 60,000 MW from hydropower projects.
The planned cascade includes the 4,500-MW Diamer-Basha project, which is already being constructed and four additional projects being developed: 2,400-MW Patan; 4,000-MW Thakot; 7,100-MW Bunji; and 4,320-MW Dasu.
In April, WAPDA awarded a pair of contracts to perform resettlement works associated with construction of the two-stage Dasu hydropower project to China's Zhongmei Engineering Group, worth about $18.56 million combined. The work includes the resettlement of Barseen, Kaigah, Khoshe, Logro, Nasirabad and Uchar.
WAPDA said the resettlement package includes utilities, roads and other amenities including schools, livestock accommodations and recreational areas.
In February, WAPDA announced it finalized the main contracts for civil works for stage-1 of the Dasu project, which is 2,160 MW. The Dasu hydropower stage-I project is estimated to cost about $4.2 billion and is located on the Indus River in the Kohsitan district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Its location is about 240 km upstream of the 3,480-MW Tarbela hydropower complex and 74 km downstream from the Diamer-Basha site.
According to CPEC information, funding the Indus River Cascade represents China’s second-largest investment in Pakistan following $57 billion already committed to several infrastructure improvements under the CPEC.
China To Invest $27 Billion In Construction Of Two Mega Dams In Pakistan-Occupied Gilgit-Baltistan
China and Pakistan have inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the construction of two mega dams in Gilgit-Baltistan, a part of India’s Jammu and Kashmir state that remains under latter’s illegal occupation. The MoU was signed during the visit of Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to Beijing for participation in the recently concluded Belt and Road Initiative.
The two dams, called Bunji and Diamer-Bhasha hydroelectricity projects, will have the capacity of generating 7,100MW and 4,500MW of electricity respectively. China will fund the construction of the two dams, investing $27 billion in the process, a report authored by Brahma Chellaney in the Times of India has noted.
According to Chellaney, India does not have a single dam measuring even one-third of Bunji in power generation capacity. The total installed hydropower capacity in India’s part of the state does not equal even Diamer-Bhasha, the smaller of the two dams.
The two dams are part of Pakistan’s North Indus River Cascade, which involves construction of five big water reservoirs with an estimated cost of $50 billion. These dams, together, will have the potential of generating approximately 40,000MW of hydroelectricity. Under the MoU, China’s National Energy Administration would oversee the financing and funding of these projects.
Two winters ago was the best winter Zulekha Begum can remember in her 42 years in Swat valley, 150 kilometres northeast of Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. “It was the most comfortable winter; our rooms were nice and warm and we had hot water anytime of the day.”
For the first time last winter, her village of Jukhtai, in the idyllic alpine valley, received an uninterrupted supply of electricity thanks to the 65 KW of the micro-hydropower project that the Sarhad Rural Support Programme, an independent development organisation, helped install in their village of 2,300 people.
The Sarhad Rural Support Programme has been working in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province since 1989 with the aim of reducing poverty and ensuring sustainable means of livelihood. And since 2004, it has built more than 250 micro-hydro units supplying off-grid communities with cheap, environmentally-friendly and uninterrupted power supply. With financial support from the European Union to produce over 19 MW of electricity, it has benefitted over 570,000 people.
Six years ago, in 2012, the EU (in collaboration with the Pakistan government) started a four-year programme to “revitalise” rural economy and promote renewable energy for sustainable livelihoods in Malakand division of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. This was later extended to 2018.
Pumping in 40 million Euros into areas affected by conflict and natural disasters, the project planned to cover 100 union councils of seven districts (Swat, Shangla, Buner, Lower Dir, Upper Dir, Chitral and Malakand) to benefit 2.7 million people affected by conflict and floods.
This fitted closely with the work of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government, which was also planning on initiating over 350 units to produce 35 MW of electricity benefiting over 700,000 people by 2017.
In Pakistan, micro-hydropower projects have been led and popularised by the Aga Khan Rural Support Programme and the Sarhad Rural Support Programme, both of whom have been recipients of the Ashden international award for their work in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Gilgit-Baltistan, and Pakistan’s Kashmir region.
“The way we work with the community is that the latter provides us with land, labour, time even local material like stone, and earth which comes to 20% of the cost while 80% is borne by the SRSP [Sarhad Rural Support Programme],” said Dildar Ahmad, Sarhad’s district programme manager. The micro-hydropower project at Jukhtai (in Swat), cost Pakistani rupee 8,152,154 ($64,275) and provides connections to 315 households and some shops.
According to the Sarhad Rural Support Programme, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government gave them 105 micro-hydropower projects to be completed by December 2018, of which they have completed 90, and the rest are 78% complete. All the EU funded projects were completed by March 2018. Overall, the Sarhad Rural Support Programme says that, since 2009, it “has constructed 332 micro hydro projects, as of July 2017, benefiting approximately 900,000 population in rural areas of Malakand Division and Northern Districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.” (Oddly, the graphic accompanying this claim suggests only 331 projects have been completed.)
Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) signed project implementation letter – 2 (PIL) worth $78 million for Mangla refurbishment project. The USAID grant will be spent for undertaking various works of Package V, VI, VIII and IX of the project.
The PIL-1 of $72 million for Mangla refurbishment project had already been signed between USAID and Wapda in 2014. WAPDA Chairman Muzammil Hussain and USAID Mission Leader Jerry Bisson signed the letter.
Due to the aging factor of the generating equipment and availability of additional water due to the raised Mangla Dam, Wapda is implementing Mangla refurbishment project with an approved PC-I cost of Rs52.224 billion. USAID is providing $150 million as grant and AFD, a french development agency, is providing €90 million as loan for the purpose, while rest of the amount is being arranged by Wapda through loans and from its own resources.
Mangla Refurbishment Project, on its completion, will enhance generation capacity of the existing Mangla hydel power station from 1,000 megawatts (MW) to 1,310MW, thus registering an increase of 310MW. The refurbishment works have been divided into 11 different packages, which will be implemented in various phases.
The generating units will be refurbished by closing down one tunnel (two generating units) at a time. Refurbishment of the first two units will be completed in year 2019, while refurbishment of all 10 generating units is likely to be accomplished by 2024.
It may be mentioned that Wapda has been implementing a two-pronged strategy for optimal utilisation of hydropower resources. Under the strategy, Wapda has not only initiated new hydropower projects but has also been rehabilitating and upgrading its existing hydel power stations.