K-Electric has sought the federal government’s assistance as low gas pressure and variation in wind power plants have hit electricity generation, causing additional load-shedding in Karachi.
The low gas pressure and drop in wind power have led to an increase in electricity shortfall. In this situation, K-Electric has placed a request before the federal government to provide 80 megawatts of additional power to overcome outages in Karachi. In a letter sent to Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Energy Shahzad Qasim, K-Electric Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Moonis Alvi said Karachi was facing the second wave of summer and demand had increased to a maximum of 3,400MW with average demand for 3,200MW.
In order to meet demand in this second wave of summer, he said, they would appreciate if the government allowed import of 800MW of electricity from the national grid, excluding wind energy from three independent power plants (IPPs). At present, K-Electric is receiving an average of 720MW of electricity from the national grid.
“At present, we are drawing an average of 720MW of electricity from NTDC and are unable to extend it to 800MW, as we have been informed by NPCC that they have shortage at their end,” he said, adding that gas pressure at K-Electric’s three combined-cycle power stations located in Korangi and SITE should increase to maximise the generation capacity.
He said they had agreed with Sui Southern Gas Company’s (SSGC) proposal for a temporary reduction in domestically produced gas supply and replacing it with expensive re-gasified liquefied natural gas (RLNG) so that pressure at the three power plants could improve.
“Despite our concurrence, we have still not seen the incremental RLNG and the required pressure at these power plants, and are losing 250-300MW,” he said.
He added that owing to these impediments, average supply of electricity had gone down to 2,700MW only, causing an additional shortage of 300-380MW, especially as the wind factor had substantially reduced.
He said the situation was forcing them to carry out additional load-shedding in the city and requested the government to allow import of 800MW of electricity from the national grid other than wind power.
He also sought support in getting improved gas pressure at the three combined-cycle power plants in Korangi and SITE, which would enable them to improve supply of electricity to the extent that they could avoid the additional load-shedding during the hot weather of September and October particularly.
“Due to low gas pressure, K-Electric’s power plants in Korangi and SITE are not able to operate at optimum capacity despite remaining fully available,” said a K-Electric spokesperson.
“To resolve this issue, K-Electric has requested to purchase RLNG, if made available at the required gas pressure, to meet short-term requirements and is awaiting confirmation of the same. At the same time, the power utility has also requested the federal government to increase supply from the national grid to 800MW from the existing NKI and Jamshoro interconnections.”