Energy conservation measures

Editorial April 21, 2010

The government of Pakistan has become extraordinarily good at taking stop-gap measures to provide short-term solutions to long-term problems.

A classic case is the recently announced plan to curb energy use as a means of controlling the chronic energy crisis. For the next six months, the country will have a two-day weekend in addition to re-instating daylight savings time. It is not immediately clear as to when daylight savings time is due to start and an announcement by the government to that effect would be helpful.

That the government has decided to take measures to reduce its own energy consumption as well as that of the rest of the country is welcome news, though some of the policies announced were either unclear or unenforceable.

For instance, how exactly does the government plan on enforcing the rule against business centres being open after sunset? Will it simply turn off their power supply for the entire night? And if so, how will that affect the service sector, which constitutes over half the economy? The government also said that it will force the industrial sector to shut down production at least one day a week. How will that impact economic growth? For that matter, what will it do to the government’s revenues? Is anybody asking these questions at all? The reality is that these measures do not seem to be very well thought out.

They are akin to stopping the bleeding in one’s arm by shutting down the heart. Technically, it will work to stop the bleeding but only by causing far larger problems. The real solution will come when the government clears the last bit of the inter-corporate circular debt which has brought the energy sector to a grinding halt.

Also, something needs to be done to reduce the high transmission and line losses experienced by the distribution companies. The ministry of finance announced that it plans on doing just that within a matter of days. One can only hope that they mean it this time.


Syed A. Mateen | 12 years ago | Reply Change of faces in upper hierarchy cannot solve the problems of the masses. I could not think and imagine that people with all big heads, after two days of deliberations, will come out with such a weak strategy. When some one call on phone to a government servant, either he is on leave or he is busy in a meeting. Most of the public servants are absent from duties, either they are on earned leave, sick leave, or casual leave and some of them have gone on annual leave, so how one can expect that government servants are available in the offices to solve people’s problems. There was no need for the government to announce two-day weekly holidays for the government servants, when most of the time they remain out of their offices. In most of the cases the government servants are corrupt and cannot do any job unless people grease their palms. Now these government servants after having two-day weekly holiday will have enough time to do their own businesses. It is not the government servants who pay maximum taxes to generate revenue for the government. It is the people from the private sector who pay more taxes than government servants. Can any one tell me who is in majority - government servants or people working in the private sector? Obviously, the majority is comprised of people who work in the private sector. But government has allowed two-day holidays to the government servants who are in minority. So how much electricity the minority can save? Had it been the case of private sector, it would have reduced the major consumption of electricity during two-day weekly holiday. The government do not realize that fact that people working in private sector also need to take rest, while majority of the government servants enjoy all the pay and perks, besides extra income, which they generate by taking illegal gratifications.
Shoaib Shakir | 12 years ago | Reply Is over 20 grade officers are Heavenly creature that are allowed to on their AC????Please Ban on AC in all offices and timings should be started at 7am and schools should also open 7am all Pakistan.If govt. wants more energy saving timing can be decided to started from 6am to Summer season.Govt. should introduce Solar energy liltains for light purpose.Humanity First is an NGO introduced this technology in remote areas of Africa.
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