Government officials have claimed many times that load shedding has been eradicated entirely. However, the ground reality is in complete contrast to those bogus claims, as several areas of the country are suffering as much as 14 hours of power outages a day.
This is just the beginning as the officials in the petroleum division of the ministry of energy say that furnace oil stocks are at a critically low level.
According to the officials, the current shortfall stands at 5,000 megawatts. However, some sources state otherwise and tell that this number goes as high as 8,000 megawatts. The category-1 consumers with less than 10% loss areas are going through 4-6 hours of power cuts. On the other hand, the high-loss areas are suffering 12-14 hours of power outages each day.
Cause of Shortfall
According to the power division, Balloki, Bhikki, Haveli Bahadur Shah power plants, four nuclear plants, Neelum-Jhelum and other hydropower stations are unavailable for power generation which is the primary reason behind the shortfall. The reason behind their unavailability is that they tripped at around 1.30 am yesterday and would take some time to fully resume their function.
On the other hand, several stations have only 3-5 days worth of fuel supply left. Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan gave the belated permission for oil shipments’ import which won’t be delivered before May 3. Around 420,000 tonnes of fuel is expected to arrive between 3rd and 14th May.
When Will it End?
Just a mere delivery won’t solve this problem. It would take at least 3-15 days for the shipment to reach the respective destination. A senior petroleum division official added;
It would, therefore, require a seamless coordination among the operational entities — PSO, port authorities, transport operators, power plant operators and the two divisions concerned — to work day and night. The margin of error is zero this time.
And it will continue in the month of Ramazan;
Power production will fall drastically ahead of the holy month of Ramazan if the supply chain is not managed effectively.
Pakistan State Oil halted the import of fuel in winter as the demand for electricity decreased. However, PSO was then directed to resume imports after January as demand started to grow.
It is already expected that coming days will be hit with severe heatwaves. In fact, several areas of Sindh have already seen the hottest day ever recorded in the month of April.
The government needs to resume the supply as load-shedding in hot summer days will make the lives of citizens hell.