Pakistan has been struggling with overcoming its energy crisis for the past couple of decades. From 1964 to 1965, Pakistan had the capability to generate electricity for up to 636 MW compared to 119 MW in 1959 while the power generation rose to 2,500 MKWH from 781 MKWH. As industries further developed with the boom in energy supply and mechanisation started occurring in agriculture, the demand for power generation was felt. Hence, new thermal and hydel power units were installed which increased the capacity of the generation to about 700MW in the early 90s. However, due to rapid population growth and industrialisation in some of the major cities of the country, the supply of electricity fell short of the demand. The crisis worsened in 2008 with low water levels at hydroelectric dams leading to a power shortage of 4000 MW. This coupled with political instability, corruption, transmission line losses due to outdated infrastructure and electricity theft, lead to massive blackouts in the country. However, efforts put in by the government finally led to an increase in the overall production of the electricity by 3.18% in 2015. Projects such as the Diamer-Bhasha Dam, Kohala Hydropower Project, Pakistan Port Qasim Power Project and Hub Coal Power Project are under construction and have the capacity to generate more than 1000MV. With China-Pakistan Economic Corridor into the picture, the energy generating capacity is expected to rise by an additional 10,400MV of energy by the end of 2018.

“We can and should seize upon the energy crisis as a good excuse and great opportunity for making some very fundamental changes that we should be making anyhow for other reasons.”

–Russel Train – 1974