Hydel generation peaked above 8,000
LAHORE: The country’s hydel generation peaked above 8,000 megawatts after the 969MW Neelum-Jhelum Hydropower Project resumed operations a couple of days ago.The power stations owned and operated by the Water and Power Deve¬lop-ment Authority (Wapda) contributed 8,158MW to the national grid during peak hours last night.“Effective operation and maintenance of Wapda hydel power stations and better hydrological conditions are the other contributing factors behind this increase in the hydel generation,” said a Wapda spokesman on Saturday.Statistics show that Tarbela Hydel Power Station generated 3,478MW followed by Tarbela 4th Extension which generated 1,410MW, Ghazi Barotha 1,450MW, Neleum Jhelum 798MW, Mangla 305MW, while all other hydel power stations of Wapda contributed 717MW cumulatively.Hydel electricity by Wapda is the cheapest if compared with other sources of generation as the cost of hydro generation stands at Rs3.51 per unit. Therefore, it has a significant impact on lowering the overall tariff.At present, Wapda owns and operates 22 hydel power stations with a cumulative installed capacity of 9459 MW. The Autority is vigorously implementing a least-cost energy generation plan to enhance the share of hydel electricity in the national grid.Several mega projects are being constructed in the hydropower sector scheduled to be completed from 2024 to 2028-29 in a phased manner. These projects will double the installed generation capacity of the country with the addition of about 10,000MW of clean, green and low-cost hydel electricity to the grid.It merits mentioning that Tarbela Dam also attained its maximum water storage level of 1550 feet on early Friday morning. At present, 5.809 MAF of water is available in the reservoir, which is the maximum storage capacity of the lake.