8,000MW renewable energy projects dropped.

ISLAMABAD -- Power distribution companies (DISCOs) have abandoned cheaper, renewable energy projects of 8,000 megawatts as serious flaws have been found in the proposed electricity acquisition plan.

The flaws in the five-year power acquisition plan, meant to purchase electricity from clean energy plants, were pointed out by the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) and different stakeholders at a public hearing on Tuesday.

It was highlighted that the plan did not mention the impact of electricity tariff on consumers. DISCOs had submitted the most confused power acquisition plan that left the regulator perturbed, they said.

The regulator, while taking a briefing from the representatives of DISCOs, could not get key points of the plan.

It was noted that under the Indicative Generation Capacity Expansion Plan (IGCEP), the renewable energy projects of 8,000MW had been approved, but those plants were dropped by DISCOs in the power acquisition plan for financial year 2022-23 to FY 2026-27.

The plan did not address issues of electricity evacuation and system constraints.

Officials of DISCOs said that at present installed electricity generation capacity stood at 43,000MW, which would jump up to 51,000MW in the coming years.

They contended that DISCOs had included in the plan only the electricity that would be procured from the contracted power plants. According to the presentation, it did not include the electricity generated by the Kapco power plant.

However, when asked by the regulator, they said that electricity would be procured from Kapco as well.

Nepra was of the view that DISCOs had significantly deviated from the IGCEP that had already been approved. It said that the IGCEP proposed the addition of 8,000MW of electricity but it was not included in the power acquisition plan.

There were visible gaps in the plan and the system operator was not consulted, it said.

The responsibility of the system operator is to assess as to which plants should be operated to ensure reliability and stability of the power system. It even runs power plants out of the merit order to stabilise the system.

'We need to accept the request of the system operator and DISCOs should take up projects to ensure reliability,' noted...

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