ISLAMABAD -  Although Gas-based GTPS Faisalabad and TPS Guddu were amongst the most cost-effective power stations as they provided power at the unit rate of Rs5.3 and Rs5.9, respectively, during 2012 to 2014 but their units were mostly put on standby mode during the subject period, due to which the energy was procured from the RFO-based expensive power stations.

The evaluation report of the public sector Generation Companies (Gencos), for the years 2012 to 2014, released by Nepra said that overall a loss of Rs17.73 billion was incurred to the national exchequer due to excess consumption of auxiliary power by the units of Genco-I, II & III and due to auxiliary power consumption by the units during standby mode.

This Performance Evaluation Report (PER) is based on the quarterly reports submitted by public sector Gencos for years 2012, 2013 and 2014. The report highlights the performance of public sector Gencos on the basis of parameters namely, Auxiliary Consumption, Standby Mode, Availability Factor, Net Capacity Factor, Net Output Factor and Energy Availability Factor. The Nepra framed Performance Standards Generation Rules (PSGR) back in 2009. Under PSGR, each generation company is required to submit to Nepra a Quarterly Performance Report as per the format prescribed in the PSGR.

The report said that the data provided by Gencos present a poor state of affairs at Genco’s power stations which may include equipment deterioration, lack of scheduled & preventive maintenance, insufficient technical expertise and poor management. Therefore, there is a need to improve the performance of Gencos since they can contribute a significant share of the total energy demanded, the report recommended.

According to the report, the RFO-based TPS Jamshoro and TPS Muzaffargarh remained the most expensive power stations among all public sector Gencos as the CPPA-G procured energy from them at the unit rate of Rs19.7 and Rs19.1 respectively during the years 2012, 2013 and 2014.

On the contrary, Gas-based GTPS Faisalabad and TPS Guddu were found the most cost-effective power stations as the CPPA-G purchased energy from these at the unit rate of Rs5.3 and Rs5.9, respectively. This indicates that gas-based power stations contributed economical energy during 2012 to 2014 but their units were mostly put on standby mode during the subject period, due to which the energy was procured by CPPA-G from the RFO-based expensive power stations at that time.

While reviewing the data regarding auxiliary power consumption during service mode, as submitted by Gencos for the years 2012, 2013 & 2014, it has been noted that over the period of three years, Genco-I, II & III have consumed more amount of power under the head of auxiliary consumption as compared to that allowed by Nepra in their respective tariff determinations. This resulted in huge loss of energy which could be contributed by Gencos and ultimately caused considerable financial loss to the national exchequer. Overall, 776.79 million kWh energy was lost due to excess consumption of auxiliary power by the units of Genco-I,II & III during service mode, which could be contributed to national grid otherwise and subsequently this resulted in huge financial loss of around Rs11.69 billion to the national exchequer.

Similarly, while reviewing the data related to Standby mode, as submitted by Gencos for the years 2012, 2013 & 2014, it has been observed that few Gencos put their units/machines on standby mode for unexplainably longer period due to which the power was drawn from national grid for operation of certain essential auxiliaries instead of generating the energy. On inquiry about the reasons of such a longer duration of standby mode, Gencos attributed the NPCC instructions and the fuel constraints as its two major reasons.

The report said that overall, 763.13 million kWh energy was lost due to auxiliary power consumption by the units of Genco-I, II & III during standby mode and subsequently this resulted in a considerable financial loss of around Rs6.04 billion to the national exchequer.

Regarding the planned and unplanned outages of Gencos for the period of 2012, 2013 & 2014, the report said that there is no regular and timely practice for taking shut downs and routine maintenance of power stations, the duration for maintenance is longer as compared to the normal range of planned outages as specified in PPAs, which affects the power demand and supply management, there are no planned outages for few units/machines of NGPS Multan, GTPS Faisalabad and SPS Faisalabad of Genco-III, which shows that no maintenance was carried out for these power stations as they were put on standby mode for most of the time.

The duration of unplanned outages is longer for some power stations of Genco-II, which indicates that no regular repair and maintenance activities are being carried out by Genco-II despite of allowing colossal amounts under O&M head.

Overall, it can be commented that the unplanned outages for the units/machines have been observed more than the normal limit as indicated in PPAs which clearly show the poor condition of GENCO's power stations. During review of data regarding availability factor over the period of three years (2012, 2013 & 2014), it was analysed that the availability factor for the units/machines of TPS Jamshoro seems very low as compared to the normal range, the availability factor for Genco-II has been drastically decreased from 79 percent to 36 percent over the period from 2012 to 2014 which is due to zero percent availability factor for some of the power stations of Genco-II.

TPS Muzaffargarh has been observed somehow under the normal range, the other power stations of Genco-III except TPS M Garh have a good range of availability factor but unfortunately there was no energy production due to putting on standby mode, this indicates the seriousness of concerned authorities to resolve power crises of Pakistan.

During review of data related to Net Capacity Factor, it was observed that Net Capacity Factor for power stations of Genco-I & Genco-II is very low even below 50 percent despite of appropriate Reference Capacity and availability of units/machines for power generation.

Similarly, Net Capacity Factor for NGPS Multan, GTPS Faisalabad & SPS Faisalabad of Genco-III is also observed very low even zero percent because of most of the time these power stations were put on standby mode during reported years.

During review of data regarding Net Output Factor over the period of three years (2012, 2013 & 2014), it was analysed that since Net Output Factor deals with the actual output of power plants vis-à-vis their available net capacities and service hours (plant's generating hours). During review of data pertaining to this factor, major variations in output percentages have been observed. This shows the unreliability of power generation and unpredictability of Genco's power stations which may be due to lack of maintenance and fuel constraints.