Good news for solar panel owners! Pakistan gave the go-ahead to solar panel owners all over the country to sell the power they generate to the national grid. The plan is to convert almost all of the water pumps in the Southwestern Balochistan to solar energy.
For the very first time, solar panel owners can now be a part of ‘Net Metering’, says The country’s Alternative Energy Development Board, a government agency.
Net metering is a billing structure through which the electricity contributed to the country’s power-short grid lets the solar energy owners get credited. Net metering can save the power per unit generated. Every time the unit cost gets saved, the owner gets R.O.I (return on investment).
Net metering would stimulate the consumers to install solar panels and sell the excess to the national grid.
Green Energy in the country would boost up from 5,000-7,000 megawatts, which would be enough to cover for the electricity shortfall and overcome load-shedding in summers, the time when the demand of electricity is at its highest.
In a press release, The Board’s Chair, Sardar Awais Ahmed Leghari said,
We are bringing the profitable business of electricity generation to people’s doorstep.
Through net metering, 4MV of power is being added up to the power grid by installing 150 solar panels, including the one installed at the Parliament House Islamabad.
Solar panel owners have their hopes high up of their business scaling up.
“Net metering will offer an incentive to people to shift to solar power. It will be beneficial to them,” said Abdullah Iqbal, a businessman who deals in solar technology. In an interview with the Thomson Reuters Foundation he said,
Previously, fewer people would go for solar. Now more common people will opt for it. Net metering will mean immediate benefits, from the very next month. More demand will mean more supply and a decline in prices of batteries, panels, and inverters.
The newly approved rules are more lenient than the former ones. Rehman Maqbool, a former National Transmission and Dispatch Company official, said the change made sense as “the previous rules were lengthy and cumbersome”.
A public awareness campaign has been announced by the Alternative Energy Board as well.
In the first phase of the project, expected to start up next year, solar energy will be used to run 10,000 pumps, the board said.