My Family's Contribution to Climate Action: Rooftop Solar and Electric Vehicles

In response to growing reports of extreme heat and floods around the world, my wife and I are doing our part to reduce our carbon footprint: We now have rooftop solar panels as well as two electric vehicles. In fact, we have had rooftop solar since 2019. My wife Yasmeen traded in her Toyota Prius Hybrid car for an all-electric Chevrolet Bolt in 2019, and I have recently traded in my gasoline-powered Mercedes sedan for a Tesla Model Y 2022. Both of us see these actions as the least we can do to help our future generations. We all need to help bring about the clean energy revolution

My New Tesla Model Y 2022

Our rooftop solar panels have been generating enough electricity to power our home for the last three years. The SunRun solar app we have shows that our solar panels generated 8,500 kWh of electricity in the last 12 months, reducing CO2 emissions produced by 6,622 pounds of coal and 676 gallons of gasoline. 

Rooftop Solar Panels on Our House

Silicon Valley where I live is at the forefront of the nascent clean energy revolution led by Tesla. Tesla is more than an electric car company; the company also supplies solar panels and batteries. Other automakers are also taking their cues from Tesla.  China's BYD Auto has only recently been surpassed by Tesla in production volumes. Auto giants General Motors and BMW are both building electric cars and planning to build "gigafactories" like Tesla's to manufacture battery packs for vehicles and homes. Pakistan is building up renewable power generation capacity. The country has also recently announced its National Electric Vehicle Policy that offers incentives to transition to clean energy.

The global transportation sector is a major polluter and in 2020 produced approximately 7.3 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Passenger cars were the biggest source of emissions that year, accounting for 41 percent of global transportation emissions.

CO2 Emissions by the Transport Sector. Source: Statista

Bloomberg estimates that batteries and electric transmission account for about 40% of passenger cars’ costs. European demand is met by mainly Japanese and South Korean battery makers like Panasonic, LG Chem Ltd. and Samsung SDI Co. In the U.S., Tesla has built its own battery cells at its Gigafactory to manage costs and satisfy demand for the cars it produces. Chinese demand for battery packs is met by BYD.

My wife and I have taken it to heart to think globally and act locally. Each of us can make our own modest contribution to helping fight global climate change for the sake of our future generations. We owe it to our children and grandchildren. The time to act is NOW!

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

Pakistan's Energy Imports

Ten Billion Tree Tsunami: Olive Revolution in Pakistan

Rooftop Solar Net Metering Growth in Pakistan 

Can Pakistan Avoid Recurring IMF Bailouts?

Extreme Heat and Floods in Pakistan

CPEC Financing: Is China Ripping Off Pakistan?

Pakistan Ramps Up Nuclear Power Generation

Is Pakistan Ready For Clean Energy Revolution?

China Global Power Database on Power Plants in Pakistan

CPEC Transforming Pakistan

Pakistan's $20 Billion Tourism Industry Boom

Pakistan Among Top 3 Countries For New Hydro Installed Capacity

Riaz Haq's YouTube Channel

PakAlumni Social Network


Riaz Haq said…
Energy Market Madness Leads To Record-Breaking Coal Consumption

Coal-fired electricity generation has surged to a record high.
The rise in coal use is being fueled by the ongoing war in Ukraine and booming electricity demand.
Coal-fuelled generation is on course to set an even higher record in 2022 as generators in Europe and Asia minimize the use of expensive gas.

Global coal-fired electricity generators are producing more power than ever before in response to booming electricity demand after the pandemic and the surging price of gas following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The world’s coal-fired generators produced a record 10,244 terawatt-hours (TWh) in 2021 surpassing the previous record of 10,098 TWh set in 2018 (“Statistical review of world energy”, BP, July 2022).

Coal-fuelled generation is on course to set an even higher record in 2022 as generators in Europe and Asia minimise the use of expensive gas following Russia’s invasion and U.S. and EU sanctions imposed in response.

By contrast, mine output was still fractionally below the record set between 2012 and 2014 because older and less efficient coal generators have been replaced by newer and more efficient ones needing less fuel per kilowatt.

Global coal mine production was 8,173 million tonnes in 2021 compared with 8,180-8,256 million per year between 2012 and 2014.

But mine production is also likely to set a new record this year as the surging demand for coal-fuelled generation overtakes efficiency improvements.

Coal Resilience

Coal’s resurgence has confounded U.S. and EU policymakers who expected it to diminish as part of their plan for net zero emissions.

Between 2011 and 2021, generation from coal grew more slowly (1.2% per year)...

As a result, coal’s share of total generation worldwide has declined 36.0% in 2021 from a recent peak of 40.8% in 2013.

But the enormous growth in electricity demand (2.5% per year) ensured there has been growing demand for all sources of generation.

Coal production and generation is set to continue rising through at least 2027 as the rising demand for electricity overwhelms efficiency improvements in combustion and the deployment of gas and renewables as alternatives.


Rapid recovery after the pandemic has turbocharged these trends, boosting electricity demand and the dependence on coal-fired generation, and lifting coal consumption to a record high

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the resulting reduction gas exports has stimulated demand even further as generators try to minimise consumption of expensive gas and countries try to indigenise their energy supplies.

In Europe, governments are encouraging coal-burning generators to remain in service for longer rather than closing in case gas flows from Russia cease in winter 2022/23.

Responding to shortages and security concerns, China and India are encouraging domestic miners to raise output to record levels to ensure adequate fuel stocks and cut their reliance on expensive imported coal and gas.

China’s coal production climbed to a record 2,192 million tonnes between January and June compared with 1,949 million in the same period a year earlier and 1,758 million before the pandemic in 2019.

India’s production climbed to a record 393 million tonnes between January and May compared with 349 million a year ago.

Fuel Shortage

Despite the rapid growth in domestic coal production in China and India, there is still a worldwide shortage of fuel, which has sent coal prices to their highest level in real terms for more than 50 years.

U.S. and EU sanctions have intensified upward pressure on prices by re-routing Russian coal to Asia and coal from Australia and Indonesia to Europe, resulting in longer and more expensive voyages.

Riaz Haq said…
Energy Market Madness Leads To Record-Breaking Coal Consumption

Coal is the bulkiest and most expensive commodity to transport relative to its value so longer voyages have a direct and significant impact on the landed price paid by power producers.

Higher gas prices in Europe are pulling coal prices up in their wake as coal-fired generators scramble to secure fuel in order to be able to run their units for as many hours as possible.

Front-month futures prices for gas delivered in Northwest Europe have climbed to €157 per megawatt-hour from €41 at the same point in 2021 while coal prices have risen to €53 from €16.

If the northern hemisphere winter of 2022/23 is colder than normal, shortages of coal, gas and electricity are likely to become severe and are likely to force some form of energy rationing or allocation. The global coal shortage is part of a wider shortage of energy evident across the markets for crude, diesel, gas and electricity.

In each case, the shortage stems from the strong cyclical rebound from the pandemic and has been intensified by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and sanctions imposed as a result.

Record prices are sending a strong signal to producers to increase output and to consumers to conserve as much fuel as possible.

Like crude and diesel, however, rebalancing the coal market will likely require a significant slowdown in the major economies to ease the immediate pressure on inventories and give production time to catch up with consumption.
Riaz Haq said…
'Non-stop' heavy rains: Public holiday declared in Karachi, Hyderabad on Monday
Entire administration is still on ground and relief work will resume as soon as rain stops, says Karachi administrator

The Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) predicted that Karachi may receive up to 200 millimetres of rain accompanied by stormy winds on Sunday. Citizens have been instructed not to leave their homes unnecessarily.

The downpour continues in various areas of the city, including Scheme 33, Federal B Area, North Karachi, New Karachi, Nazimabad, Muhammad Ali Society, Bahadurabad, PIB Colony, Gulshan-e-Iqbal, Gulistan-e-Johar, PECHS and adjacent regions.

Due to the continuous rain in the metropolis, low-lying areas have been flooded causing citizens to face severe problems with ambulances unable to reach various locations.

Met department officials have said that the current system of rains may remain across Sindh, including Karachi, until Tuesday.

"Due to heavy rainfall which is expected to continue even tomorrow, #SindhGovt has decided to declare Monday, the 25th of July as a public holiday in Karachi & Hyderabad Divisions," Karachi Administrator Murtaza Wahab Siddiqui wrote on his official Twitter handle.

He said that a notification in this regard is being issued.

"It's been raining nonstop since early morning & severity of rainfall has increased in the last hour or so," Murtaza said in another tweet.

He also requested people to avoid unnecessary movement. "The entire administration is still on ground & relief work will start as soon as the rain stops," he added.

Sindh Minister for Information, Transport and Mass Transit Sharjeel Inam Memon also requested the private sector to keep their offices closed.

The district administration of Hyderabad is setting up 29 relief camps in the city to deal with any emergencies during the new spell of monsoon rains, which may continue till Tuesday.

According to a notification issued by the district administration, the relief camps are being established in schools and colleges and would be supervised by the relevant principals.

304 perish in rains

The monsoon rains that wreaked havoc in the country resulted in the deaths of more than 300 people, including 118 children and damaged 8,889 houses, according to the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA).

A report issued by the NDMA stated that 99 deaths were reported in Balochistan, 61 in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P), 60 in Punjab, 70 in Sindh, eight in Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B), five in Azad Jammu and Kashmir and one death was reported in Islamabad.

Nearly 300 people were also injured in the rain-related incidents.

Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan's depleted #mangroves cover in Arabian Sea growing 'rapidly'. Between 1999-2021, the mangrove area along #Pakistan’s 1,050-kilometer (652-mile) coastline has increased to over 494,000 acres from over a 113,000 acres. #Climate #GlobalWarming

Pakistan's mangrove cover has seen rapid expansion along the Arabian Sea over the past two decades due to coordinated efforts by government agencies and environmental organizations.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency on the eve of the International Day for the Conservation of the Mangrove Ecosystem, which is celebrated on July 26 every year, Tahir Rasheed, a regional director of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Pakistan, said that in Southeast Asia, Pakistan is the only country where mangrove cover has increased dramatically over the last two decades.

Between 1999-2021, the vulnerable mangrove area along Pakistan’s 1,050-kilometer (652-mile) coastline has increased to over 200,000 hectares (over 494,000 acres) from 46,000 hectares (over a 113,000 acres).

A colossal chunk of mangrove forest falls in southern Sindh province, whereas southwestern Balochistan province, which boasts a 700-kilometer (435-mile) coastline, shares a meager portion of nearly 4,000 hectares.

“We witnessed a decline of mangrove forest from 600,000 hectares along the Sindh coastline in the early 20th century to merely 46,000 hectares in the mid-1980s. However, the cover area of mangroves has increased to over 200,000 hectares along the Sindh and Balochistan coastline over the past two decades,” Rasheed said.

Due to the “well-coordinated” plantation and rehabilitation campaigns by the Sindh Forest Department the federal government, WWF-Pakistan, and civil society organizations, the country’s mangrove cover is increasing at a “good pace,” he went on to say.

A host of projects by WWF-Pakistan alone have contributed 16,000 hectares to the country’s overall mangrove cover, apart from the rehabilitation of 32,000 hectares, he added.

Danger still lurking

Mangroves, a group of trees and shrubs that grow in the intertidal regions of tropical and subtropical coastlines, are significantly important for ecosystems and are considered the first line of defense against cyclones, strong surges, tsunamis, and other natural calamities.

The Sindh coast, particularly the port city of Karachi, has been reeling from a relentless process of morphological changes mainly due to anthropogenic activities including industrial pollution, soil erosion, deforestation, rapid industrialization, urbanization, and land degradation in addition to natural processes.

Industrial and economic infrastructure development, land-grabbing and inhabitation along the coast, and the construction of huts at beaches have adversely impacted the marine ecosystems and mangroves of the adjoining creeks, say environmentalists.

Making matters worse, some natural phenomena such as high energy waves, tidal currents, and strong winds during monsoons have also influenced changes along the coast.

Acknowledging a “rapid” increase in mangrove cover in the country, Hammad Gilani, a Lahore-based environmentalist, nonetheless observed that the danger is still lurking.

“Mangroves along Pakistan’s coastal belt and Indus Delta are still facing two key threats in the form of sea intrusion and degradation,” Gilani, a researcher at the International Water Management Institute in Lahore, told Anadolu Agency.

“Deforestation (of mangroves) is not a big problem. But degradation, which includes some justifiable livestock needs, is really an issue,” he argued.

He noted that rising sea levels have long been wreaking havoc on mangroves, especially in the Indus Delta, from where the Indus River flows into the Arabian Sea.

Also, mangroves require a systematic flow of fresh water, which unfortunately does not persist at the moment, he said.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan's depleted #mangroves cover in Arabian Sea growing 'rapidly'. Between 1999-2021, the mangrove area along #Pakistan’s 1,050-kilometer (652-mile) coastline has increased to over 494,000 acres from over a 113,000 acres. #Climate #GlobalWarming

Also, mangroves require a systematic flow of fresh water, which unfortunately does not persist at the moment, he said.

Gilani noted that the South Asian country has seen a rapid augmentation in mangrove cover after the 2010 massive floods, which, although inundating a fifth of Pakistan, made up for a freshwater shortage.

Sharing a similar view, Rasheed said: "To keep the momentum going, we have to create awareness among the masses, and especially the policymakers, about the environmental significance of the mangroves and reinforce how important they are as the threat is not over yet."

Bulwark against sea battering

Thick mangroves have long protected Karachi and its coastal communities from erosion caused by the Arabian Sea's unending waves, observed Shabina Faraz, a Karachi-based expert, who often writes on the environment.

However, she added, the fragile ecosystem faces numerous threats, from coastal development, urbanization, and encroachment to the commercial exploitation of mangroves, reduction of freshwater flows and sedimentation, erosion of coastal areas, chemical dumping, and raw sewage.

"Karachi city alone contributes 500 million gallons of untreated water to the sea. Apart from that, polluted water from 6,000 industries also contributes high-impact pollutants to the Arabian sea that negatively affect the mangrove ecosystem and marine fauna," she maintained, speaking to Anadolu Agency.

Gilani, the Lahore-based expert, said that despite an increasing mangrove cover, satellite imagery has punctuated the need for national-scale carbon sequestration reporting for a performance-based payment mechanism flowing from developed countries to developing ones.

Seconding his view, Faraz said carbon sequestration reporting could add to the national economy "significantly."

Forests lose ground around Karachi

Tariq Alexander Qaiser, a Karachi-based environmentalist, said that although the mangrove cover on the wider delta was increasing, mature forests around Karachi have been pushed back.

Urban expansion into the estuaries and intertidal lands where the mangroves are found has had a negative environmental impact, he observed.

He said serious urban flooding had resulted from construction on flood plains, whereas water outflow into the sea had also been constricted, he told Anadolu Agency.

The dying of the plants' roots holding together the mud and sand on the islands and coast, Qaiser said, has allowed sands to shift and islands to erode.

This results in greater dredging needs, and increases costs of operating ports, he maintained.

"The removal of mangrove cover from the coastline also leaves the city vulnerable to sea surges and tsunamis. This has a serious impact on human life and safety."

According to Qaiser, the deltas' mangrove cover is expanding, but the situation is "very different" on the islands and shores of the cities, especially Karachi.

He explained that these "most mature and tallest of the forests" were being cut down due to poverty and the need for fuel.

The only way to retain this very necessary forest cover is to create and enforce a nature reserve on Karachi's Islands, Qaiser argued, adding that the metropolis, home to 20 million people, needed this oxygen-producing wilderness to maintain some control over its air quality.

"We need to keep planting new mangrove forests, but equally important is the need to protect the forests that exist. Especially on the islands of Karachi."

Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan's punishing inflation changes life as 225m people know it
Poor skimp on food while those better off carpool, buy solar, aim to emigrate

Like everything else, the cost of riding privately operated buses in Pakistan's urban centers has jumped. Fares have risen as much as 40% in two months due to expensive diesel. So commuters are squeezing themselves into government-subsidized bus services in the few cities where they are available. From Rawalpindi to Lahore to Peshawar, these public transport systems have been reporting tens of thousands to even hundreds of thousands more daily riders than before the fuel price increases.

Meanwhile, many motorists are rationing gas. "[Gasoline] worth 400 rupees that would last us three days now finishes in a day," said one motorcyclist. "We get just enough petrol every day to get us to work and back," said another. And since gasoline theft is on the rise, many are installing fuel locks.

Data shows that Pakistanis are certainly buying less gas and diesel than they used to. Overall sales were down 14% in June versus the previous month, according to Topline Securities, a Karachi-based equities brokerage.

Khawaja Atif Ahmed, a gas station owner and the information secretary at the Pakistan Petroleum Dealers Association, told Nikkei Asia that customer traffic at his station in Lahore fell 20% to 25% after the price hikes. The city's daily consumption, once more than 3 million liters, has fallen to 2.1 million to 2.2 million liters, he added.

Among middle-income Pakistanis who are loath to use run-down public transport, many are resorting to carpooling. Facebook pages that connect drivers and riders have mushroomed. Sana Adnan, a work-from-home mom in Karachi, set up a group called "Carpool Karachi" on Facebook after the government announced the second fuel price hike in a week in June. She said the rise in members and posts "has been overwhelming."

Electricity costs are also biting across all segments of society. This has had a side effect of boosting the solar power industry, though many would-be photovoltaic adopters are quickly being priced out too.

For Shoaib Saleem, managing director of Karachi-based solar panel provider Deniz Synergies, business has been booming. "Before solar panels were used by people who were environmentally concerned or were rich," he said. "Now we are getting lots of queries from businesses and the production sector, whose operational costs have doubled, as well as residences," he said.

Hoping to capitalize on the demand, dozens of companies have entered the market for solar panels. "Six years back, when we came into this business, there were only two or three [solar panel providers]," said Syed Shafi, a sales manager at Delta Power in Karachi.

Of course, solar panels are not immune to the red-hot inflation.

"Equipment is short because goods are stuck at Chinese ports due to import restrictions, which is driving up the cost of solar equipment by up to 45%," said Deniz's Saleem.

More immediate countermeasures for inflation-squeezed middle-class households include eating simpler meals and sharing bedrooms to cut air conditioning costs.

Some have had enough of compromising on living standards and are eager to emigrate.

A Karachi-based doctor in her late 30s, who requested anonymity, said her family had been considering emigration for years but stuck around, thinking economic conditions would eventually improve. Judging from the past three months, she said, "it seems we made a huge mistake."
Riaz Haq said…

Chart: Where Carsharing Is Making Inroads | Statista

Carsharing has become increasingly popular across the world in recent years, particularly in urban areas where people can rely on efficient public transport or cycling for the majority of their daily tasks and use a car on the occasions where it is necessary, without having to invest in ownership.
According to data from Statista’s Global Consumer Survey (GCS), carsharing has taken off in India, with 34 percent of survey respondents stating that they had used a carshare via either a website or an app in the past twelve months. Zoomcar was the main player in the space in 2021, according to the Statista Market Forecast, with 35 percent of respondents picking the brand. The company’s business model is a hybrid of short term loan cars like 'Zipcar' and a traditional car rental agency like Sixt, allowing users to rent a car for anywhere between a few hours to a few months. The number of carshare users in the country is expected to reach 2.0m by 2026.
South Africa and Pakistan came in second and third place, with 29 percent and 24 percent of online adults, respectively. By contrast, only 12 percent of Brits said that they had carshared. This is on par with the average of the 39 countries surveyed. Australia and the US were around the same mark as the UK’s figure, at 14 percent and 12 percent.
For further information on carsharing, electric cars, battery technology and related topics, check out Statista’s 2022 report "eMobility - ​Market Insights & Data Analysis​".
Riaz Haq said…
In order to encourage the production of renewable energy in the country, the Pakistani government announced on Friday sales tax exemptions on imports of solar panels and their distribution.

Presenting the budgetary proposals for the next fiscal year in the National Assembly on Friday, Pakistani Finance Minister Miftah Ismail said that the energy sector has pivotal importance for the people as well as the industries and trade in the country, adding that at the moment fuel prices were skyrocketing, which made thermal energy expensive. “For these sectors and the people we gave an additional subsidy of 214 billion rupees,” the minister noted.

The Finance Minister proposed tax exemption on import and local supply of solar panels. He said soft loans from banks will be arranged for the people who consume less than 200 units of electricity to purchase solar panels.

The previous government of Prime Minister Imran Khan had imposed a 17 percent general sales tax. The imposition of taxes on solar panels has received criticism from different quarters.

Earlier in May, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif announced the reversal of the decision to tax the solar panels, which will be implemented in FY23.

Chinese companies manufacturing solar panels will have to play a crucial role in the generation of Alternative Renewable Energy (ARE) in Pakistan. At the moment, according to a market survey, more than 90 percent of solar panels and other related equipment are being imported from China. Chinese companies are executing and running solar power projects in Pakistan including 300 MW solar power projects which is operational under the umbrella of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)

In a recent interview with Gwadar Pro, former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said, “solar is very critical to Pakistan’s need today” and added, “I am expecting that China, which has the most experience in the world in solar, will come to Pakistan and help the country get more sustainable energy”. He also welcomed more Chinese companies to come to Pakistan and establish solar panel manufacturing plants in the country.

Pakistan targets an on-grid Alternative Renewable Energy (ARE) generation mix of 20 percent by 2025 and 30 percent by 2030, adding the policy targets the development of ARE projects mainly on competitive bedding, unsolicited mode limited to G2G and new technologies.

Pakistan has a population of over 225 million. Approximately 88 percent of the population has access to electricity while 12 percent remains un-electrified. The annual per capita electricity consumption in Pakistan is around 550 kWh as compared with the world average of 3,081 kWh per capita.

National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) approved Indicative Generation Capacity Expansion Plan (IGCEP) 2021 with demand supply projects till 2030. Under IGCEP, the current installed capacity of 34,776 MW will become 61,112 MW by the end of 2030. Apart from the committed pipeline projects, the IGCEP requires an addition of 10,062 MW of ARE capacity by 2030.
Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan’s largest city #Karachi received more than an entire summer’s worth of #rain in one day. AccuWeather says the heaviest rainfall arrived Sunday when Karachi received more than triple its monthly #rainfall in just 24 hours.#Monsoon via @accuweather

Monsoon downpours deluged portions of Pakistan this weekend and Karachi, the country's largest city, bore the brunt of the worst impacts as the floodwaters destroyed homes, inundated businesses and damaged infrastructure.

AccuWeather forecasters say the heaviest rainfall from the event arrived Sunday when Karachi received more than triple its monthly rainfall in just 24 hours.

Daily life was turned to a standstill as this deluge turned major throughways into raging rivers and left entire neighborhoods submerged. Images from the city showed residents navigating floodwaters that ranged from knee-high to chest-high in spots. Vehicles were left stranded as floodwaters climbed.

The catastrophic flooding event left all major highways in Karachi flooded, according to The Express Tribune. Due to the impossibility of safe travel for large portions of the city, the local government declared Monday a public holiday in Karachi, which closed all government offices and urged private offices to follow suit.

Karachi, Pakistan's financial and industrial hub, is located along the coast of the Arabian Sea. Some of the most densely populated areas of the city are located at, or scarcely, above sea level. The low-lying nature of the city already makes Karachi prone to flooding issues, but inadequately-constructed drainage and flood management systems compound the issue considerably.

Rainwater even mixed with sewage in some locations and this contaminated water rushed into homes and businesses.

Murtaza Wahab, the Karachi administrator, told The New York Times that the city has an old drainage and sewage infrastructure that could not cope with the torrential rains and acknowledged that updates were critical.

Floodwaters in recent days have damaged more than 5,500 homes as well as critical infrastructure like highways and bridges, according to a report from Pakistan's National Disaster Management Authority.

This weekend's flooding was the second destructive flooding event the city has had to endure this month alone. Earlier in July, another deluge of monsoon rainfall left Karachi underwater.

Since the middle of June, monsoon rainfall and subsequent flooding have resulted in more than 280 deaths throughout Pakistan, according to The Associated Press (AP).

The amount of rainfall the city has already received this month is astounding, forecasters say.

"Karachi received 2.36 inches (60 mm) of rain on Sunday due to a weak monsoon low that formed near southwestern Rajasthan, India, over the weekend," AccuWeather Lead International Forecaster Jason Nicholls explained.

So far this July, the city has recorded just over 8 inches (200 mm) of rainfall which equates to 1,147 percent of normal for the month, according to Nicholls. Karachi typically receives less than an inch (25 mm) of rain in July and just over 1.50 inches (38 mm) of rain over the course of the summer months.

Furthermore, even in the highly unlikely event that not a single drop of rain falls in Karachi for the rest of the year, the city would still end 2022 with over 260 percent of its normal precipitation.

The monsoon normally arrives in Pakistan around July 8, but this year it arrived several days early, according to Nicholls.

"Part of the reason for the excessively wet July is that the monsoon [axis] has been located south of its normal position for much of the month," Nicholls explained.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan on Tuesday raised electricity prices to match rising generation costs amid a global energy crisis and a heatwave, even as the country grapples with its highest inflation in over a decade, the power minister said.

Inflation last month reached 21.3%, driven mainly by rising food costs, and the country also faces fast-depleting foreign reserves, a depreciating currency and widening current account deficit.

"Cabinet has approved an increase in electricity tariffs but lifeline (poor) consumers will not be affected,” Power Minister Khurram Dastagir Khan told reporters in Islamabad, adding that the increase would not apply to them.

Pakistan's monthly fuel oil imports are set to hit a four-year high in June, Refinitiv data shows, as the country struggles to buy liquefied natural gas for power generation amid a heatwave that is driving demand.

Higher energy imports have hit the economy as the country struggles to boost foreign exchange. The rupee has lost 20% of its value in 2022. Reserves have fallen to as low as $9.3 billion, hardly enough to pay for 45 days of imports.

Pakistan this month reached a staff-level agreement with the IMF for $1.17 billion in critical funding under a resumed bailout package.

The country is also pushing to tap other avenues for power. The minister said that nuclear power production had risen after the refuelling of one plant.

From the beginning of July, the K2 plant has been operating at full capacity
Riaz Haq said…
#China's #BYD cuts into #Tesla's lead in global #EV sales, reaching No. 2. BYD, which was fourth in 2021, sold 324,000 EVs in the January-June half to pass #Chinese rival SAIC Motor & #Volkswagen. Tesla led with 564,000 vehicles sold in first half of 2022.

China's BYD became the world's No. 2 seller of electric vehicles globally for the first six months of 2022 on the strength of lower-priced models, trailing only Tesla, while the Hyundai Motor group rose to fifth, in a Nikkei ranking.

BYD, which was fourth in 2021, sold 324,000 EVs in the January-June half to pass Chinese rival SAIC Motor and Volkswagen. The Berkshire Hathaway-backed company ended production of gasoline-powered vehicles in March to focus on electrics and plug-in hybrids.

BYD also sold more than 300,000 plug-in hybrids in the first half of 2022. When these are considered along with the EVs, the company ranked as the world's top seller of electrified autos.

BYD's broad EV lineup, including the Yuan Plus sport utility vehicle and the Dolphin subcompact, centers on the 100,000 to 200,000 yuan ($15,000 to $30,000) range. The relatively low prices have helped to attract younger car buyers. Plans to sell passenger vehicles in Japan were announced last week, with an SUV among the offerings from 2023.

For the ranking, Nikkei used data from market research firm MarkLines and automakers, covering roughly 3 million EVs sold in 66 major markets.

Tesla, the market leader in 2021, remained on top in the first half of 2022, with sales of 564,000 vehicles. But it hit a few speed bumps this year.

COVID-19 lockdowns in China slowed production at the EV maker's Shanghai plant, limiting sales growth for the first half to 46% from a year earlier -- compared with around 90% growth in 2021. Telsa's EV sales grew by about half on the year in the first half, while BYD's count more than tripled.

With new factories in Berlin and the U.S. state of Texas, Tesla seeks to boost sales of its popular Model Y compact SUV.

The Hyundai group's EV sales doubled to 169,000 vehicles. The Ioniq 5 SUV that debuted in 2021 features an EV-specific platform, helping to extend its range. The vehicle can run 100 km on a five-minute charge. Sharing components with affiliate Kia's EV6 has reduced costs.

Hyundai's sales growth is driven by a shift in its mainstay U.S. market, where sharply higher gasoline prices have accelerated the move to EVs. The Hyundai group sold 13,000 each of the Ioniq 5 and the EV6 in the U.S. in the first half of the year.

For the April-June quarter, EV sales in the U.S. grew 70% to 204,000 vehicles, according to MarkLines, to account for 6% of overall sales there.

SAIC slipped to third, with 310,000 vehicles sold in the first half, facing a slowdown in sales of the Hongguang Mini EV made by joint venture SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile. Priced under $4,500 at 2021 exchange rates, the car was a hit in China's regional cities. But the higher cost of materials forced a price hike, dampening sales.

Meanwhile, Japanese carmakers have fallen behind. Some had expected that the spike in gasoline prices would push car buyers toward hybrids, but EV sales have grown faster.

The alliance of Nissan Motor, Renault and Mitsubishi Motors dropped to sixth, with 133,000 vehicles sold. Toyota Motor and Honda Motor sold 10,000 EVs each, ranking outside the top 20.

The top 20 EV sellers included 12 Chinese carmakers. New York-listed XPeng's sales grew 120% while Hozon New Energy Automobile sold three times as many units as in the same period the previous year. Leapmotor, a Hangzhou-based startup founded in 2015, sold 50,000 vehicles to break into the top 20 at 17th place.

On the EV sales outlook for the second half, S&P Global Mobility's Masatoshi Nishimoto says that "sales are likely to grow with China and Europe continuing their subsidies."

Riaz Haq said…
This Fully Localized Electric Rickshaw is Roomier Than Wagon R

According to a company representative, MUVA electric rickshaws are made in Pakistan completely from scratch at their state-of-the-art facility in Lahore.

Pakistan Auto Show (PAS) 2022 saw participation from numerous promising prospects. One such up-and-comer is YES Electromotive — a fully indigenous electric vehicle (EV) maker that seeks to launch MUVA electric rickshaws in Pakistan.

The company is still fine-tuning the product through testing and extensive research and development before officially launching these rickshaws in the market, the representative said.

Short for Modular Utility Vehicle Architecture, MUVA covers a development program for light commercial vehicles. These tiny EVs will serve the same purpose as a conventional rickshaw, but with zero tail-pipe emissions and at almost 7-times less running cost than a petrol-powered three-wheeler.

MUVA electric rickshaw is an ultra-light commercial EV that seats a driver and three passengers. It has a maximum payload capacity of 300 KGs and a curb weight of 450 KGs. It has a single permanent magnet electric motor that makes up to 10.7 horsepower.

The company representative added that the MUVA rickshaw will be sold as a commercial EV only and that the company will aim for fleet sales. He added that YES Electromotive also seeks to adopt a ride-hailing service operating model, whereby the riders will be able to summon these rickshaws via a mobile app.

YES Electromotive is shaping up to be a promising addition to Pakistan’s public transport sector. Stay tuned for more details.
Riaz Haq said…
Solar plant to replace 300MW Gwadar coal power project
The project was conceived under the CPEC and approved in 2016

The Power Division has decided to abandon the 300MW imported coal-based power plant at Gwadar and replace it with a solar plant.

The project was conceived under the CPEC and approved in 2016, but its formal construction had not started. Now the government wants China to install a solar power plant of the same capacity after the government decided not to install any new power plant based on imported fuel in the future.

“We have decided to abandon the project, but we will have to take up the issue at various CPEC forums with our Chinese counterparts. CPEC projects have sensitivity and importance which is why the Power Division’s decision to replace the imported coal-based project at Gwadar with a solar plant is being kept at a low profile,” an official said.

Federal Minister for Power Division Khurram Dastgir Khan also hinted the government wanted the Chinese power plant at Gwadar to be replaced with a solar power plant of 300MW. Talking to The News, he also added that the government had decided to ban new power plants based on imported fuel and would add new capacity to electricity generation based on local fuel, such as Thar coal, wind, solar, and hydel. “However, the government will continue the policy to install more nuclear power plants,” he added.

More importantly, the minister said, the government has also decided to convert the existing imported coal-based power plants of 3,960MW, including the Port Qasim plant, Sahiwal power plant and China Hub plant, each having the capacity to generate 1,320MW of electricity, to local coal. The fuel import bill had eaten up almost $20 billion in the first 11 months of the last fiscal 2021-22. The initiative is being taken to scale down the fuel import bill and reduce reliance on imported fuel for power generation. The minister said the process to convert the three projects to local coal would take investment and time as boilers of the plants would need some specific changes for calibration with Thar coal.

The Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) for the CPEC had decided in its 6th meeting held in Beijing in December 2016 that a 300MW imported coal-fired power project must be developed on a fast-track basis at Gwadar. The tariff of the project was determined in September 2019, land for the project was acquired in February 2020 and the project management was signed on April 8, 2021. The Nepra also issued a generation licence to the project management. However, the financial close of the project has not yet been completed as it is still under process. The project is still on the list of under-construction CPEC projects. However, its construction has not started yet. That is why top officials of the Power Division have decided to abandon the project and replace it with a solar power plant under its new policy not to install a new power plant base on imported coal in future.

Pakistan is currently importing 30 to 70MW of electricity from Iran under an agreement of 110MW. Sometimes, Pakistan has some fluctuation in electricity import because of demand in Iran. Pakistan had inked a new agreement of importing 100MW electricity for which a transmission line would be laid from Polan (Iran) to Gwadar by the end of 2022, or the start of 2023. The government has also increased its emphasis on laying its own infrastructure in Balochistan and the NTDC will lay a high transmission line of 500kv from Makran coast to Gwadar.
Riaz Haq said…
Fortunately, the United States has finally decided to address it head-on: The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, easily the largest climate bill in U.S. history, has cleared both the Senate and the House. It invests $369 billion to help get the country off fossil fuels and gives the Department of Energy $250 billion to lend to companies shaping the clean energy future. Together, these measures will leverage many hundreds of billions of dollars spent by businesses and households alike, producing and purchasing things like electric vehicles, solar panels and heat pumps.

The bill’s High-Efficiency Electric Home Rebate Program offers up to $8,000 to install heat pumps that both cool and heat homes, replacing air-conditioners and, typically, gas furnaces. If the current water heater runs on gas, the program supports going all in with a heat pump (a $1,750 rebate).

Fully electrifying one’s home also often means improving electric wiring (another $2,500 rebate), and the full benefits of home electrification only come with sealing gaps and insulating ($1,600). Switch from a gas range to an induction stove and get up to $840 back. Add solar panels on the roof (a 30 percent tax credit), batteries as backup (30 percent) and an electric vehicle in the garage (up to $7,500 per new car and $4,000 per used car), and home electrification is complete.
Riaz Haq said…
The Sindh government has decided to solarise 200,000 housing units in rural and urban areas across the province with the support of the World Bank, it emerged on Thursday.

The decision was taken at a meeting between Energy Minister Imtiaz Ahmed Shaikh and a delegation of the World Bank headed by its director Najy Benhassine at the energy department.

Mr Shaikh told Dawn that the panels would be installed in all districts of the province under the Sindh Solar Project.

“Over 200,000 houses/units will be solarised in both rural and urban areas of all districts as part of the provincial government’s major initiative to end the energy crisis,” he said.

The minister said that it was also decided that a subsidy of $160 per house/unit in rural areas and $110 in urban areas would be given.

“Initially. solar panels are being installed in 10 districts and the process will be extended to all other districts of Sindh,” he said.

The minister said the World Band delegation expressed its satisfaction over the pace of ongoing projects in the province’s energy sector.

He said the importance of generating green environment-friendly energy was increasing rapidly in view of climate-change impacts.

There were many opportunities for blue economy in this sector, he said. “The speed of wind in the sea is many times better than on land, so wind turbines can be installed on the sea and beaches to generate cheaper electricity,” he said.

Imtiaz Shaikh said that an economic zone could be established in coastal area, which would be an important milestone in the development of the coastal area. “The energy department will cooperate in developing offshore wind projects near coastal areas,” he said, and added that floating solar energy units would be created for economic development of the country.

He said that the energy department wanted to work with the Pakistan Institute of Oceanography to develop floating solar projects in coastal areas.

“Floating solar systems and offshore wind projects can expand blue economy opportunities through affordable energy,” he added.

The minister said that land for water-based green energy projects was several times cheaper and unlike most land-based solar plants there, floating arrays could be stationary.

To a question, he said that the provincial government had also decided to restructure the proposed Sindh Petroleum Company which would work for gas exploration.

He said that the SPC would give licences for gas and petrol exploration in the province, adding that a draft of recommendations regarding activation of the SPC and its rules and regulations had been prepared.

He said that the SPC along with the search for new gas reserves would also monitor the distribution of existing gas reserves.

Imtiaz Shaikh demanded a new natural resources agreement between the federation and the provinces and said that the new gas distribution agreement would help curb the sense of deprivation found in the provinces.

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