LAHORE: The first unit of Tarbela 4th Extension Hydropower Project has started electricity generation with effect from June 8. The unit, which is currently in its reliability period, is presently providing 335 megawatts (MWs) of electricity to the national grid, which will gradually expand to its maximum capacity of 470MWs.
Despite being completed in April, this unit could not start electricity generation due to non-availability of water owing to lower inflow in River Indus at Tarbela this year.
The second unit has also been put into wet commissioning three days ago. This unit is scheduled to enter its reliability period in the first week of July. Under the 1,410MW Tarbela 4th Extension Hydropower Project, three electric power generating units – each of them having capacity of 470MW – have been installed at Tunnel 4 of Tarbela Dam.
Tarbela 4th Extension is a component of least-cost energy generation plan being implemented by Wapda on priority to meet electricity requirements in the country and increase the ratio of hydel electricity in the national grid to stabilise electricity tariffs for the consumers.
Upon completion of the project, generation capacity of the existing Tarbela Hydel Power Station will increase from the existing 3,478MW to 4,888MW.
The project will provide 3.84 billion units of electricity to the national grid annually. Benefits of the project have been estimated at Rs30 billion. The project will pay back its cost in just three years.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 12th, 2018.