Pakistan’s energy resources presently consist of natural gas, oil, coal, hydropower, nuclear power and LPG. A brief description of available energy resources is given below:
I. Natural Gas: Natural gas is being produced in all the provinces of Pakistan. The total estimated available gas reserves are about 25 Trillion cubic feet. The average production of natural gas during 2014 was about 1.5 Trillion cubic feet. Natural gas is being used in power generation, fertilizer production, transport, as a fuel in cement production and in general industry and for operating HVAC plants of domestic, government, public & commercial buildings, and for hot-water & cooking for domestic use.
II. Crude Oil: Pakistan is producing crude oil since 1915. The presently available reserves of crude oil have been estimated at 371 Million Barrels which are mainly present in Sindh, Punjab, & K P K Provinces. The average production of crude oil during 2013 was 76200 barrels per day. The domestic oil production meets merely 20% demand of the country. To meet the demand supply gap, crude oil, furnace oil, diesel oil and petrol/ gasoline is being imported from Middle East Countries.
III. Hydro Power: Pakistan’s hydropower resources are estimated at more than 60,000 MW. However the present total hydropower generated in Pakistan is 6773 MW which accounts for about 31% of the total electricity generated in Pakistan.
IV. Coal: Pakistan’s has coal reserves estimated at over 185 billion tones out of which 175 billion tons of coal deposits are present in Thar area of Sind Province. The Thar coal is low quality lignite and posing many problems for mining, therefore, the deposits could not be developed since their discovery in 1980. The coal deposits present in other areas of Sind, Balochistan, Punjab and KPK provinces are of lignite to sub-bituminous type and are being mined since long. Almost 90% coal in the country is being used by brick kilns and 10% for power generation in cement industry and other small industries. Most of the coal used in the cement industry is imported from different countries. The share of local coal in power generation is less than two percent.
V. Nuclear Power: Three nuclear power plants, are working in Pakistan. Karachi Nuclear Power Plant with a capacity of 137 MW was setup in 1971 with the technical assistance of Canada. The Chasma Nuclear Power Plants have been set up with the technical support from China in the year 2000.Two power plants have been set up with capacity of 325 MW of each plant. Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission has planned to increases the Nuclear Power Capacity to 8800 MW by the year 2030. The present share of nuclear power in the total generating capacity of Pakistan is 2.3%.
VI. Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG): LPG is environmentally friendly and an economical fossil fuel. Liquefied Petroleum Gas contributes about 0.5% of the total energy supply of Pakistan. LPG is being supplied in cylinders in remote areas where natural gas network is not available. Almost 20% supply of LPG is met through imports.
VII. Compressed Natural Gas (CNG): Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) is being used in transport vehicles as it is cheaper fuel than diesel oil or petrol/ Gasoline. Moreover, it is a clean & environmentally friendly fuel. Pakistan is the largest CNG transport user in the world.
VIII. Geothermal Energy:
Pakistan is one of the few countries in the world which have large geothermal energy resources available in all the provinces which could meet the power, heating, and cooling requirements of the entire country in future.
VIII (a). Geothermal Energy Resources for Power Generation: Geothermal energy resources are available in all the provinces of Pakistan for power generation in the form of hot water & steam. However the temperature of these resources varies at different locations. Geothermal springs, geysers, fumeralos with flowing hot water & steam are present in the Northern Areas, including, Gilgit, Baltistan, KPK Provinces & Azad Kashmir. All these geothermal energy resources could be developed for power generation in Pakistan.
Energy Foundation has preliminary estimated that the total geothermal energy resources for power generation available in Pakistan which may exceed 100,000.0 MW of electricity. However, a detailed Survey of Geothermal Energy Resources of Pakistan is required for base load power generation.
VIII (b). Shallow Geothermal Energy Resources for Air Conditioning: Shallow geothermal energy resources are available all over Pakistan and could be used for cooling, heating (air conditioning) of buildings and supply of hot water. These geothermal resources are being used in more than 70 countries of the world by installing Geothermal Heat Pumps (GHPs). The geothermal heat pumps save 100% natural gas and up to 50% electricity for space heating and cooling and supply of hot water. Three Geo thermal Heat Pumps have been installed in Lahore, Islamabad and Peshawar for demonstration purposes by Energy Foundation. Pakistan has sunshine all over the country, therefore, the shallow geothermal energy resources available in the entire country have been estimated by Energy Foundation at more than 60,000 MW equivalents of heat & electricity.
VIII (c). Geothermal Energy Resources for Direct-Use: Hot Water from geothermal energy resources which cannot generate electricity is used for direct use applications in many countries of the world for space heating and vegetable, crops, fruit drying, green houses, ice melting, aquaculture, and in many industries requiring heat. The Northern Areas of Pakistan including Chitral, Giglit, Baltistan, and Kashmir could benefit from low temperature hot water abundantly available for direct use applications. More over the hot waters with less than 100o C are also available in the Punjab, Sindh, KPK and Baluchistan Provinces could be used for direct use applications in many industries. The direct use geothermal energy resources with less then 90°C are estimated at more than 30,000 MW of electricity & heat by Energy Foundation.