With unusual surge in the temperature in April, all air-conditioners, ceiling, pedestal and table fans and all other gadgets for cooling were switched on in houses, offices, shopping markets, centres, malls and business centres. This naturally resulted in heavy load, leading to power outages of longer durations both in the urban and rural areas. Excessive use of electronic equipment for cooling increased the gap between power generation and supply to more than 5000 megawatts.

Despite all this usage of cooling equipment all around, everyone is raising hue and cry and protesting here and there against scheduled and unscheduled electricity load shedding.

It is a matter of bitter fact that we as a nation have somehow, become used to consuming much more than what we produce, be it electricity, vegetables, fruits, pulses etc. The ever-increasing population also adversely effects power supply and demand position.

The federal government no doubt is tackling energy crisis on top priority basis and power projects are under execution, near completion and being completed with a speed in order to bridge the gap between energy supply and demand. Power generation projects take some years to be completed but still work on more than one and half power projects based on coal, thermal, hydel, LNG sources is still going on quite speedily to ensure completion of more and more power plants at the earliest.

But in all fairness, have we ever thought that by making a bit of sacrifice by reducing usage of air conditioners only, which consume a lot of energy , the widening gap between power supply and demand can be brought down considerably. If air conditioners in the luxurious government offices are switched on only when the incumbent Sahibs arrive and not couple of hours earlier and if the shopping markets, centres and malls are closed earlier in the evening and at least one or two air conditioners are switched off in every bungalow in posh localities, then at least duration of electricity outages will be reduced. Just going on demanding rights without any responsibility, going on consuming everything that comes our way than what we produce is certainly not advisable.

If a beginning in conserving and reducing energy consumption by switching off air conditioners at least is made from the top at the level of the president, the prime minister, the governors and chief ministers of the provinces and the federal and provincial ministers, by making public announcement in this regard, then electricity load shedding will be minimised within no time.

ASMAAR BILAL,

Lahore, April 21.