KARACHI: The Planning Commission has issued a letter to Sindh government to request that it implement proposals the energy proposal announced after a conference in Lahore.
The proposals include, closing down markets and commercial activities by 8 pm except on weekends, alternate street lighting and more efficient street lights, a five-day work week for all governments, installations of solar geysers in government housing, subsidy for solar-agri tubewells, stopping power supply to billboards and neon signs and a phasing out of incandescent bulbs. According to the government’s estimates, these steps will help conserve 4,000 megawatts nationally.
However, Karachi Electric Supply Company (KESC) has opposed cutting power to billboards and street lights. It doesn’t think that shutting down street lighting is a good idea because of the volatile law-and-order of Karachi. The company spokesman said that the government should focus on paying their dues to KESC which amount to more than Rs3 billion.
“Curtailing commercial activity does not have that big of an impact and consumption of electricity by billboards in Karachi is not that much,” said KESC spokesman Aminur Rahman. “We think that the government should deal with the proposals that fix the right to supply.”
He said that said that any decision about commercial establishments should first be discussed with Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry and should be in the interests of the consumer.
“We support any measures that will help conserve energy and create alternative means.”
Published in The Express Tribune, April 24th, 2012.
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