Al­ter­nate En­ergy

Southasia - - EDITOR’S MAIL -

Find­ing new sources of en­ergy is an is­sue that con­fronts all na­tions of the world but par­tic­u­larly the coun­tries of South Asia. Wa­ter has been a tra­di­tional source and hy­dro­elec­tric­ity is one method of power gen­er­a­tion that has dom­i­nated the power mix in na­tions like In­dia, Pak­istan and Bangladesh. How­ever, in this re­gion of abun­dant sun and wind, it is quite per­plex­ing that such al­ter­na­tive en­ergy sources have not been fully ex­ploited.

It must go to the credit of In­dia that it has made good use of its wind cor­ri­dor on the coast of Gu­jrat and is trans­mit­ting valu­able elec­tric­ity to var­i­ous parts of the coun­try. In Pak­istan too,

some in­sti­tu­tions are now tak­ing ini­tia­tives to ex­ploit the abun­dant avail­abil­ity of wind in re­gions like Gharo on the Sind coast and have put up wind power projects. So­lar en­ergy, it must be said, is an ex­pen­sive propo­si­tion but had th­ese and other na­tions in South Asia been se­ri­ous, they could have de­vised cheaper means to ex­ploit so­lar en­ergy and put it to com­mon use. Coal is also a cheap al­ter­na­tive and again, de­spite its vast coal re­sources, Pak­istan has mis­er­ably failed to tap this source to its own ad­van­tage and con­tin­ues to burn ex­pen­sive gas or im­port fur­nace oil to pro­duce elec­tric­ity. Per­haps the en­ergy crunch will serve as the great game changer and be­come a cat­a­lyst in push­ing th­ese and other na­tions to ex­ploit avail­able al­ter­nate en­ergy sources!

Shahida Aziz Abu Dhabi, UAE

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