Pakistan to add 550 MW wind power by 2013

To increase power generation through alternate source, the Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) has initiated various wind farm projects worth $1.6 billion in Sindh province, which will add 550 megawatts (MW) power by 2013, sources told Daily Times here on Saturday.

Sources said that the AEDB, through its facilitation, Wind Risk was offered to all wind energy projects in Sindh. In this regard 10 wind turbines projects are at advanced stage of development. Construction work for three 50 MW projects (over $400 million) has started in Jhampir area and eight more are expected to achieve financial close by June 2012. These projects of $1.6 billion are expected to generate 550 MW power by 2013.

Apart from above projects, the sources claimed that the AEDB has facilitated large pipeline projects, which are expected to come online during the year 2012 in the next year. The AEDB has worked with National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) and the feed in tariff has been announced for wind power projects. Under this fast track policy another 1,000 MW projects are expected to come on line by 2013. The sources further said that the AEDB has negotiated and arranged the ‘Counter Guarantee’ programme with the assistance of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), which has accelerated foreign investment in the wind sector. Already ADB, IFC, CDB and the IDB have taken equity interest in the wind projects in Pakistan.

About involvement of AEDB in hydropower generation projects, the sources said that the AEDB is managing the Asian Development Bank’s Renewable Energy Development Sector Investment Program (REDSIP). Under this programme, three projects (56.2 MW) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, five in Punjab (24.04 MW) and two (30 MW) in Gilgit Baltistan are under different stages of implementation.

The AEDB has arranged Technical Assistance (TA) to Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for their renewable energy (RE) projects. The TA for Sindh and Balochistan is under negotiation with donors. The Punjab government has issued LoIs to private investors for establishment of 10 small hydel power projects with a cumulative capacity of 142 MW at different locations in Punjab. Similarly SHYDO has issued six LoI for small hydropower projects.

To further facilitate the investment in small hydro power projects, the AEDB has just completed feasibility studies for top 25 hydro sites in AJ&K, Sindh, Punjab and KP with the cumulative capacity of 284.14 MW. This report is being provided to potential investors, the sources maintained. The sources further claimed that the AEDB/UNDP and AKF are implementing 103 micro hydro projects (15 MW) in Chitral. This is the first ever micro hydro programme accepted as Programme of Activities under the CDM programme of the UNFCCC. Phase two comprising of 250 plants is under preparation. The AEDB has obtained licences for local manufacturing and trained local manufacturers for micro hydro turbines for the project.

About solar power generation, the sources said that so far eight LoIs (211 MW) for Solar PV parks have been issued to independent power producers; these projects are at various stages of development. Tariff petition by one IPP has been submitted to NEPRA.

Ijaz Kakakhel,