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Karachi: DHA City Project to explore renewable sources of energy

The Defence Housing Authority (DHA) has decided to explore the potential of renewable sources of energy for DHA City, the site of its new residential project along the Super Highway, The News has learnt.

DHA officials told The News that renewable energy, including power generation through wind and solar means, would also help to conserve the environment and natural habitat at the site of the DHA City project. DHA City Director Major (retd) Shaukat Alvi said that the DHA City project is situated in an already identified wind corridor, and owing to its advantageous location, it is advisable to use renewable sources of energy there.

According to Alvi, in the first step, a pilot project would be launched at the site of the project, which would produce 20 KVA of electricity. He said that in the subsequent stages, generation could be increased to 100 KVA.

At present, the DHA is looking for a consulting firm to provide it with the required technical expertise and assistance needed for completing the feasibility study, and to fulfill all subsequent scientific, material, and geological requirements for the successful installation and operations of the project of alternative energy sources.

The DHA has decided to develop 5,000 acres area out of a total 11,640 acres land, with developers anticipating resident settlement in the next four to five years. Alvi said that owing to the hilly terrain of the project land, a terrace is available at the project site, which is as high as 279 feet and its location is best suitable for the installation of wind turbines.

He said that at even ground level, wind with velocity of seven metres per second is available throughout the year, and this ease of use is advantageous for the operation of the wind turbines project.

“We are planning that a soon-to-be-opened information centre, site office, and tube-well of the DHA City project would be powered by the renewable energy pilot project,” he said.

Obviously such a major land development project could not be fully self-sustained for its electricity needs by solely relying on renewable sources of energy, said the director DHA City. “Once we would be fully operating our project of renewable energy, we would be in a position to give electricity produced by these sources to the KESC for benefit of the whole electric supply system in the area,” said Major Alvi.

He claimed that the Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB), the federal government’s arm to promote use of renewable energy in the country, has been considering DHA City’s initiative favourably. After the feasibility study of the project is completed, the DHA would then decide whether to fully invest into the alternative energy project or seek the help of prospective private entities for launching the project as a joint venture.

Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) Chief Executive Officer Arif Alauddin confirmed that the location of the DHA City project is in proximity to the wind corridor which emanates from the coastal belt, is 60 kilometres wide (at Gharo-Kati Bandar) and is 180 km long (up to Hyderabad).

Contrary to the DHA’s position, Alauddin maintained that despite the advantageous location of the project, wind would not be available at the site throughout the year, and thus the DHA should go for a hybrid system of renewable energy that meets their electricity requirements during all weather conditions.

He did however claim that the AEDB would support the DHA in its bid to explore renewable sources of energy at its site of news residential project. “The AEDB would provide all the assistance and consultancy, whether it is in terms of DHA utilising its the electricity produced or adding the generated electricity to the grid,” he said.

Source: The News

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