ISLAMABAD: Economic survey for 2019-20 reveals that Pakistan’s installed capacity to generate the electricity in the first 10 months of the current fiscal has increased by 7.5 percent to 35,975MW which was at 33,452MW in the same period of last financial year.
The hydro share in total electricity generation has increased to 27,270 Gigawatt Hours (GWH) in FY-2020 as compared to its share of 24,931 GWH in FY-2019. Currently, thermal has the largest share in energy mix with 51,629 GWH, and electricity through nuclear stayed at 7,049 GWH followed by 2,057 GWH through renewable.
Significant growth of RLNG usage in energy mix has helped improved supply to various power plants like Bhikki, Haveli Bahadur Shah, Balloki, Halmore, Orient, Rousch, Kapco, Saif and Sapphir being supplied to fertilizer plants, industrial and transport sectors.
Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) is the sole department in Pakistan engaged in electricity generation using nuclear technology. There are five nuclear power plants operating on two sites in the country, one unit namely, Karachi Nuclear Power Plant (KANUPP) at Karachi and four units of Chashma Nuclear Power Plants (C-I, C-2, C-3 & C-4) at Chashma (Mianwali District of Punjab province). The gross capacity of these five nuclear power plants is 1,430MW that supplied about 7,143 million units of electricity to the national grid during 1st July 2019 to 31st March 2020.
KANUPP, the oldest of the lot has surpassed its design life of 30 years and has, in fact, completed 48 years of safe and successful operation. The four units of Chashma are amongst the best performing electricity generating plants in the country, in terms of endurance and availability.
Two more units with a total output of 2,200MW are currently under construction near the KANUPP site in Karachi, the Karachi Nuclear Power Plants (K-2 and K-3). First concrete of K-2 was poured on the 20th of August 2015 and that of K-3 on the 31st of May 2016. Construction of K-2/K-3 is on full swing and is in its final stages with more than half of civil work already in place. PAEC has undertaken construction of another nuclear power plant at Chashma near Mianwali.
The site already is home to four operating nuclear plants. This unit will be called C-5 and it will replicate the design characteristics of K-2 and K-3. A contract for its construction has been signed with China and extensive studies for site evaluation are currently underway.
PAEC has intensified its activities to meet the nuclear electricity generation target of 8,800MW by the year 2030 set through the government’s Energy Security Plan formulated in 2005. Completion of K-2/K-3 project will be a big step that will bring PAEC 2,200MW closer to achieving this target.
Ample technical and engineering infrastructure is already in place to support both the existing and the under construction nuclear power plants. Skilled manpower is being produced regularly by Indigenous institutes, imparting state of the art training and education in all relevant disciplines and at all levels, from technical trainings to academic programmes. These instruments are enough to successfully support the foreseeable future ambitions envisioned by PAEC for the future nuclear power programme of Pakistan.