Sindh to establish microgrids to energise villages

power sector - Sindh to establish microgrids to energise villages

KARACHI: The Sindh government is working on the policy to establish mini/microgrids to supply electricity to the off-grid villages at the most affordable cost in partnership with the private sector.

Sindh government’s Energy Department Secretary Abu Bakar Madani said this while speaking as the chief guest at the Solar Power Day seminar organised by Sungrow Pakistan.

The secretary said the provincial government has been working on a number of initiatives to tap indigenous renewable energy resources of the province with the aim of providing affordable energy to the people of Pakistan. These clean energy resources included wind, solar, biomass, small-scale hydropower, and waste-to-energy potential available in the province.

The Sindh Energy Department has launched the World Bank-funded Sindh Solar Energy project, envisaging a 400MW capacity solar park and provision of 200,000 solar home systems in 10 districts of the province having low energy access, he said.

The same project is also being implemented to produce an additional 20MW of solar power through utilization of the rooftops of the public sector buildings in urban areas, mainly the hospitals.

He said the Sindh government has already installed 352 solar PV hybrid systems in 225 primary health facilities in 13 districts of Sindh. Moreover, 150MW (3×50 MW) of the upcoming on-grid solar PV power projects in Sindh has achieved the milestone of financial close.

The energy secretary said the Sindh government facilitated the private investors to invest in the alternative and renewable energy sector as for the purpose a “Land Grant Policy 2015” was being implemented for providing land to execute clean power projects. “The Energy Department is fully dedicated to serving the nation, facilitating the private sector by providing one-window solutions and utilizing the indigenous resources of the province to not only produce electricity but also to reduce dependency on imported fuel for accelerating national economic growth,” he added.

Sindh Transmission and Dispatch Company (STDC) Chief Executive Officer Saleem Shaikh told the seminar that recently the STDC had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to develop a 400MW first-ever hybrid (wind/solar) renewable energy project in Pakistan on a B2B model.

The STDC fully stood for the cause that the immense solar power potential of Sindh should be utilised for overcoming the problem of electricity shortfall for every domestic consumer in the country. It has the desire to enter into similar more B2B arrangements to energize off-grid rural areas and industries of the province, he said.

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