A shortfall in or interruption to the provision of energy supplies is called energy crisis. Electricity is the major problem Pakistan is facing today. Electricity in Pakistan is generated, transmitted, distributed and retail supplied by two vertically integrated public sector utilities: Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) for all of Pakistan (except Karachi), and the Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC) for the City of Karachi and its surrounding areas. There are around 16 independent power producers that contribute significantly to electricity generation in Pakistan.
For years, the matter of balancing Pakistan’s supply against the demand for electricity has remained a largely unresolved matter. Pakistan faces a significant challenge in revamping its network responsible for the supply of electricity.
Contrary to the Pakistani government and expatriate claims, Pakistan suffers from a massive electricity shortage. Electricity generation in Pakistan has shrunk by 50% in recent years due to an overreliance on hydroelectric power. In 2008, availability of power in Pakistan falls short of the population’s needs by 15% Pakistan was hit by its worst power crisis in 2007, after the assassination of Benazir Bhutto and the following riots. Production fell by 6000 Megawatts and massive blackouts followed suit. The blame was laid on the then president, Pervez Musharraf, and was instrumental in his defeat. Load Shedding (deliberate blackouts) and power blackouts have become severe in Pakistan in recent years. The main problem with Pakistan’s poor power generation is raising political instability, together with rising demands for power and lack of efficiency.
Causes of energy crisis
- Limited oil resources which are being exploited are controlled by a few countries.
- Rapid depletion of oil reserves.
- Political disagreement leading to shortage of oil due to delays at border points.
- Over-consumption: The energy crisis is a result of many different strains on our natural resources, not just one. There is a strain on fossil fuels such as oil, gas and coal due to over-consumption – which then in turn can put a strain on our water and oxygen resources by causing pollution.
- Overpopulation: Another cause of the crisis has been the steady increase in the world’s population and its demands for fuel and products. No matter what type of food or products you choose to use – from fair trade and organic to those made from petroleum products in a sweatshop – not one of them is made or transported without a significant drain on our energy resources.
- Poor Infrastructure: Aging infrastructure of power generating equipment is yet another reason for energy shortage. Most of the energy producing firms keeps on using outdated equipment that restricts the production of energy. It is the responsibility of utilities to keep on upgrading the infrastructure and set a high standard of performance.