Pakistan has been undergoing a severe energy crisis for over a decade now.
The World Wind Energy Association (WWEA) and the Alternative Energy Development Board of Pakistan with the support of Heinrich Bӧll Stiftung Pakistan (hbs) have been working together for the growth of renewable energy in Pakistan since 2013. The work has been primarily focused on wind energy ranging from research based advocacy and policy recommendations to capacity building of public and private sector officials associated with wind energy in Pakistan. Now, WWEA and hbs have joined hands together to hold Renewable Energy Dialogues across Pakistan to assess institutional renewable energy landscape at federal as well as provincial levels through multi-stakeholder engagement.
Pakistan has been undergoing a severe energy crisis for over a decade now. Energy demand increased sharply while supply could not match the growing demands of individuals, household and industry. The current demand-supply gap stands roughly at 5000 MW ˗˗ hindering the potential of millions of people and industries, and slowing economic growth of the country. Moreover, 32% population lacks access to electricity whereas; those connected to national grid experience power breakdowns and unreliability challenges.
WWEA Secretary General Stefan Gsaenger:
“Pakistan has made good progress in particular in the deployment of wind power and has started to develop a domestic supply chain. Together with other renewables, wind is the perfect match for the economic and geographic situation in the country. We hope that with the renewable energy dialogues and based on our international experience, we can further support renewable energy growth in Pakistan, for benefits and prosperity of the country’s citizens.”
With advancement in technology and plummeting costs, renewable energy technologies offer promising opportunity to a country like Pakistan to meet its growing energy demands while also keeping its energy sector clean and environmental friendly. Although, the renewable energy has started gaining momentum in the country, it only contributes 1400 MW in the total installed capacity of 25,000 MW. Some of the main reasons of slower RE growth in Pakistan are lack of coordination between federal and provincial governments with regards to RE development and lack of awareness among different federal and provincial agencies about their mandate relating to RE deployment especially, after the 18th constitutional amendment in the constitution of Pakistan.
hbs Pakistan Deputy Country Director Jacqueline Wilk:
“We at Heinrich Böll Stiftung (hbs) are delighted to be able to contribute to the development of the Renewable Energy Sector in Pakistan. Not only because Pakistan is in dire need of electricity and economic development, but also because we are convinced that the future lies in renewable energy solutions. Pakistan’s institutions and policy frameworks have to be equipped for a sustainable development, in order to connect to global trends.”
The project aims to highlight the outstanding challenges causing sluggish renewable energy progress in Pakistan through a multi-stakeholder dialogue process. Structured and strategic dialogues remain essential for resolving issues among different stakeholders and for building bridges between the efforts of those actors. The dialogues are important for bringing clarity in roles and responsibilities of different institutions with reference to renewable energy promotion. Bringing together various actors at a single platform would help stakeholders avoid reiteration of efforts on a single issue and help them take more informed decisions in finding pathways to overcome impediments being faced by the renewable energy sector of Pakistan. These dialogues will be conducted in four major cities of Pakistan: Peshawar, Lahore, Karachi and Quetta.