Stories about energy crisis

No water, no electricity, no education – When living in rural Sindh is worse than a death sentence

Martin Luther King once said, “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope”. This is the thought the residents of Tharparkar comfort themselves with every day. They console each other by hoping that after all their hardship will come some ease. Out of a small number of nine countries, Pakistan has succeeded in becoming a nuclear power. Who would have thought in a country with so much power, there would be so little for the common people? It is appalling to even think that the residents of rural Sindh still transport water with the help of donkeys. I often find ...

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How are we supposed to “celebrate” Eid with no water and no electricity?

Life in Pakistan has never been easy. The living conditions continue to deteriorate with each passing year. The effects of climate change, coupled with the water crises, are making life harder and harder for people living here. The power outages do not help either. However, this year, the repercussions of climate change and the water crisis are being felt the most, and things are about to get much worse. Today is Eid, which many people in the colonial parts of the city, especially certain gated communities, are enjoying to the fullest. Perhaps because they do not face the same problems ...

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Pakistani Twitterati took on the #PetrolShortage and here is what happened

Already frustrated by crippling electricity and gas shortages, Pakistanis now have another crisis on their hands. This time around, Pakistanis are standing in mammoth queues just to secure a drop of petrol. The ‘petrol crisis’, as it is being referred, brought to light some interesting and entertaining observations on the country’s favourite government-bashing platform: Twitter. Three hashtags are currently being used to respond to the petrol shortage in the country; #PMLNpetrolchor was the top trend, with it being used over 19,500 times in the past 24 hours and #PetrolShortage and #SherBanoSher were each tweeted nearly 6,000 times since yesterday. We look at how people reacted: This @Reuters report ...

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Will Pakistan’s energy crisis ever end?

Ever since the energy crisis hit the country, the whole nation is looking for an answer to one question – will it ever end? This is just one simple question which many governments have failed to address. The former Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) government gave false hopes to the people and as evident, even after the end of their five-year tenure, there is no improvement in the energy sector and the people are left suffering from 10 to 14 hours of load shedding.  Since the formation of PML-N government with their aggressive energy policy cum metro bus approach, the question ...

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Give Pakistan a chance

There are quite a few times in the day that I find myself in the comfort of my living room hearing people excoriate the way things are running in this country. The source of the criticism is either a guest whining on a talk show on TV or a companion grumbling about the prevalent paucity of gas and electricity in the country. I come across numerous people around me, analysing and commenting on the many problems of our country. Some would say, “It is the exigency for a solid leadership.” Others devise a fancy conspiracy theory about it all being an orchestrated play, scripted by the ...

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Birth, confusing and perplexing, birth

The August night was frightening, confusing, perplexing. Hot, humid and sweaty… The room was pleasant, comfortable, properly lit and professionally decorated in muted, soothing hues of beige, gold and taupe. Tapestries artfully draped, artefacts tastefully displayed; everything oozed style and grace. The effortless elegance and oomph of old money inherited through generations, mere mortals can only think, or write about. A room, about to witness the first birth… The loudest, metropolitan city of the land of the pure was in complete darkness, thanks to power outage. Energy crisis was at its peak and on that particular night, the shortfall in electricity production was more than many thousand mega-watts. She whimpered in pain ...

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Making sense of the Musharraf indictment

On Monday, Nawaz Sharif addressed the nation. He spoke of staggering challenges: a paralysed economy, a crippling energy crisis, the existential threat of terrorism.  The implication: there’s much to be done, with not a moment to lose. The very next day, Pervez Musharraf was charged in connection with the assassination of Benazir Bhutto. Is this unprecedented indictment of a former army chief a resounding victory for democracy in Pakistan? Absolutely. But is it also an ill-timed move that smacks of revenge politics? Certainly. What else to make of the fact that the leader of a cash-starved, energy-deprived, militancy-choked, flood-ravaged nation has chosen ...

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The coal and energy crisis

A million dollar question today: why are Pakistanis facing prolonged load-shedding when there is no difference between the demand and supply at 22,797 MW, according to the Pakistan Energy Year Book, 2012? The share of oil and gas in power generation is 64.2 per cent while hydel is at 29.9 per cent and 35.2 per cent of the total electricity is generated from imported furnace and diesel oil. Natural gas contributes 29 per cent to power generation and Pakistan is currently producing 4.2 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) of gas while the demand is six bcfd. This non-renewable source of ...

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Myth busting: The truth about Pakistan’s energy crisis

With the electronic media barely in its teens and social media barely out of pre-school, information is reaching us in all shapes: substantiated and unsubstantiated, actual and distorted. The media process needs the kind of maturity only the slow and gradual process of evolution can bring. So, in the absence of an effective information editing mechanism at the origination end, a need for filtering at the consumption end becomes imperative. Of course, it is unfair to expect everyone to be a domain expert on everything. A basic level of understanding on key issues helps distinguishing facts from fiction, hope from hype, ...

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No accountability, no solutions

As elections approach, political parties have started criticising each other. The temperature is only going to rise in the coming days. From law and order to poor economic indicators, everything is surfacing in fiery speeches. But if one looks closely, the parties conveniently avoid offering solutions. Take the example of the national carrier. Bogged down by accumulated losses of over Rs100 billion, PIA is in a mess. The PPP government changed the airline’s top management more than twice but that did little to lift its fortunes. Even the well-connected managing director Aijaz Haroon was forced to quit by the formidable alliance ...

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