- Pakistan’s solar power capacity under its IGCEP 2047 report is expected to exceed 26.9 GW by the end of 2047
- Solar is likely to contribute more than 12 GW by 2030 along with wind growing to over 10 GW
- By 2047, solar’s share is expected to grow up to 26.9 GW contributing a rather low level of 16% to an expected nominal generation capacity of 168,246 MW
Come 2047, a century after the country came into existence after it separated from India, Pakistan believes it can boast of close to 27 GW of solar power capacity. As per the Indicative Generation Capacity Expansion Plan (IGCEP) 2047 published by the country’s National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA), under the base case scenario solar’s share in the country’s electricity mix should be 26,921 MW in that year.
As per the Renewable Energy Capacity Statistics 2020 by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), Pakistan’s solar energy capacity till the end of 2019 reached 1,329 MW.
The IGCEP 2047 envisages a comprehensive view of Pakistan’s future electricity demand forecast, existing generating systems and future power generation options and offers expansion study results.
The base case scenario forecasts 43,820 MW of electricity demand by the year 2030 which would need 76,391 MW of generation capacity to which solar power is estimated to contribute 12,793 MW and wind 10,327 MW. The country’s administration throws in Open Cycle Gas Turbines (OCGT) on Regasified Liquefied Natural Gas (RLNG) and Steam Turbine (ST) as well as hydro to mitigate the intermittency of variable renewable energy (VRE) resources.
By the year 2047, electricity demand is expected to grow up to 103,065 MW requiring a total of 168,246 MW of nominal generation capacity. Solar is expected to contribute 26,921 MW to this capacity along with 10,327 MW of wind power. That means solar’s share in power production would be only 16% , an unlikely low number when taking into consideration PV’s competitiveness paired with Pakistan’s attractive solar potential. In comparison, a recent SolarPower Europe/LUT report modeled 48 to 63% solar generation shares in total energy generation by 2050 for Europe (see 100% Renewable EU Primarily A Solar Story).
While local coal and hydropower plant capacity is expected to account for 36% and around 42% in Pakistan’s energy mix and imported coal 1%, renewables are anticipated to represent 15% of the overall energy mix.
The complete IGCEP 2047 can be viewed online on NEPRA’s website. NEPRA is now seeking stakeholder feedback on the same and has also submitted it for review and approval of concerned authority.