Pakistan with a population of over 200 million is one of the most populous countries in the world. Given the size and resources available in the country, this is already a big number, more numerous than many bigger countries, and the numbers will only sore in the future.
Even with such a massive population, the country hasn’t been able yet to capitalize on these mostly young human resources for economic growth and development in the country. And the chronic energy shortage faced by the country since its independence is one major reason that had hampered the economic growth of the country. Now as we sit at the cross-roads of industrial transformation, thanks to the CPEC projects, the country has a great chance to rebuild is energy sector and step up efforts on war footings to overcome the energy shortage in the country.
However, as we move on, the country needs to plan for long-term measures for sustainable energy to reduce its energy dependence on burdening fuel-generated energy (since the country doesn’t have much of the fossil fuel resources to meet its needs). The key here is to invest in renewable energy in Pakistan.
Fortunately, the present administration is seeing renewable energy in Pakistan as a viable alternative to energy dependence on fossil fuels. The government has started funding some of the mega renewable energy projects including hydropower dams, micro-dams, solar energy parks, and wind parks as a measure to improve the energy shortage in the country, as well as, invest in sustainable and environment friendly technology.
According to the sources, renewable energy in Pakistan will make up about 20% of the entire energy production in the country in the next 6 years, whereas, the share of renewable energy is planned to take up to 30% by 2030. Now, whether the country is going to achieve it or not is debatable, however, the good thing is that renewable energy is being discussed in higher echelons.
Below we will be looking at some of the reasons why renewable energy is the most viable option of the country to gain energy independence in the future:
Pakistan economy has been on the decline for over a decade now. The country foreign debts have grown massively, mainly due to consistently low exports. The industrialists in the country have been facing significant challenges due to high energy prices (one of the most expensive electricity in the world), and to add to the miseries of industries they have to face hours long energy breakouts, which utterly break their capacity to remain competitive or to compete internationally.
Now, many industrialists have on their own started to invest in renewable energy sources like solar panels to meet their industry requirements. However, there is a dire need for government support and assistance, to ensure the suitability of the industries and consequently help rebuild the economy.
Lack of Natural Resources
Continuing from the above, with an already increasing debts and decreasing foreign reserves, the single biggest import of the country is fossil fuel required to generate electricity in the country. Furthermore, any fluctuation in the international price of fossil fuel directly impacts all sectors and industries in the country. And while the government is always running low of foreign reserves and not sufficient natural resources in the country to replace the imports, there is a dire need for the country to invest in the renewable sector. This won’t just help the country save massive foreign reserves, but also enable the country to gain energy independence in terms of international price fluctuations.