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Thar project is nation’s future, says Raja

Published Aug 09, 2012 08:05pm


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Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf visiting Control Room of Thar Coal Project at Tharparkar. - Online Photo

THARPARKAR: Completion of the Thar coal power project will bring about a revolution not only in the life of locals but also ensure prosperity in Sindh and the entire country, Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf said at a public meeting here on Thursday.

Earlier he visited the test burn site of the pilot project undertaken by nuclear scientist Dr Samar Mubarakmand. “The coal reserve in one block alone can produce two billion barrels of diesel,” the prime minister said.

He said three companies — Global Mining China, Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company and Oracle Coalfields UK — were working on three other blocks.

The prime minister recalled that Benazir Bhutto had initiated this project in 1994, but successive governments ignored it.

“Credit goes to President Zardari for revival of the project,” Raja Ashraf added.

Summing up the post-2008 general election situation, he again praised President Zardari for taking all parties along and cobbling together a coalition government. “PPP needs no lessons on politics and democracy as examples of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Benazir Bhutto are before us. Every member of the party has suffered and given sacrifices in the struggle for democracy,” Raja Ashraf said.

“For us there is no other way but to pursue the path of democracy which comes through elections and holding free, fair and transparent elections is the right of people.”

The prime minister said the People’s Party believed in fair and transparent election because the nation had always voted for PPP despite character-assassination of its leadership.

“Now is the time to tolerate each other and carry forward the message of love and respect as hatred has not given us anything.”

Raja Pervez Ashraf announced a grant of Rs 200 million for electrification of villages and asked the Sindh government to set up information technology centres in every town.

QAIM ON JUDICIARY: Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah thanked Dr Mubarakmand for working on the Thar pilot project and for seeing to it that 83 per cent of jobs went to locals.

Mr Shah made a veiled criticism of the judiciary, saying it did not realise that “the prime minister is the elected representative of 180 million people”.

“The judiciary’s decisions in the past were regrettable and again efforts are being made to harm democracy.”

Mr Shah said democracy should not be derailed as it was vital to the country’s progress.

Provincial Information Minister Sherjeel Memon, Senator Gul Mohammad Lot and MNA Dr Mahesh Mallani also spoke on the occasion.

Chief Secretary Raja Muhammad Abbas highlighted the potential of Thar coal in battling the energy crisis.

Ejaz Ahmad, Secretary of the Coal & Energy Department, gave a briefing about the companies which were developing three blocks in Thar coal field.

The project will generate 2100 megawatt of electricity.

Dr Mubarakmand said his team had demonstrated that coal gassification can be used for power generation and other uses like production of diesel, methanol and urea.

In reply to a question by the prime minister, Dr Mubarakmand said one ton of coal produced one megawatt of electricity per hour. The average cost of power from UCG is two to three cents per unit while for a 100mw project its cost is expected to be four to five cents per unit.

Capital expenditure on a UCG power station inclusive of gassifiers is $ 1.2 per wt, the lowest for any production plant.

Dr Mubarakmand said two German scientists had developed a process to convert coal gas into diesel or methanol. This process was now being used for commercial purposes, recalling that a South African company was producing 160,000 barrels of diesel per day at an average price of $ 30 per barrel.

Dr Mubarakmand, addressing apprehensions expressed by MNA Dr Khatumal Jeevan, said there was neither any danger of water contamination from gasification nor of environmental pollution.


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Comments (19) Closed

Amir Aug 10, 2012 03:20am
How come he did not consider Thar coal reserviors to produce energy when he was the minister of Water and Power development?
Cyrus Howell Aug 10, 2012 03:43am
Like their hats.
Azam Aug 10, 2012 04:22am
What's funny is ZA Bhutto, a socialist is being associated with democracy. :s Election campaigns begin.....people suffer
Eng.Mehmood Aug 10, 2012 04:39am
Let us salute those initiating such projects & Mubarak may be fuly supported to overcome power crises. Unfortunately there is an easy route for those people especially politicians, Journalists,who are eager to enjoy benefits is to oppose Chief Justice.As desire of Chief Justice is to make Pakistan strong via creating hurdles for looters & to bring back looted money.
Khalid Mahmood Aug 10, 2012 04:54am
The Government should also pay attention to producing hydroelectric power which is inexpensive and pollution free. Pakistan should utilize this vast potential as rivers and rapids abound in this God gifted nation.
cautious Aug 10, 2012 04:59am
Borderline scam. Three Companies who have no funding and no credible mining experience are being held out as proof that Thar Coal is somehow the solution to Pakistan's energy crisis. Toss in a well known scientist (who happens to have zero experience in mining or coal gasification) to further encourage a public that this is a credible project. Hasn't anyone in Pakistan asked the obvious question. Why are none of the large international mining giants which have the expertise and financing interested in Thar Coal ? The answer is obvious but probably not politically correct.
Hikayat shah Aug 10, 2012 06:44am
Our best wishes are with Dr Samar Mubarakmand. and his team, if The coal reserve is being brought to production for multi purpose use. inshallah the country will get on track to the success and progress. Hikayat shah Gojal chipursan Gilgit Pakistan
Niraj Aug 10, 2012 07:33am
How about selling power to India. Increase stakes in each other's economy and thereby security for stability and development.
rashid zaidi Aug 10, 2012 07:35am
The future is bright for Pakistan, the political process has to get into motion the old guard and crooks replaced by young vibirant educated future leaders of Pakisatn. There are problems of law and order, create jobs that all will lose traction.
m.y.saleem Aug 10, 2012 07:51am
we prey to ALLAH that this project should succeed.i think it will also produce gas also.
Ali Aug 10, 2012 08:22am
This guy is much better than Gillani. much more active.
Ali Sheikh Aug 10, 2012 08:25am
Dr Samar, you rock!!
mohammad Aug 10, 2012 08:25am
very nice. but at the same time we have to exploit the vast potential of rivers and water also. we are allowing india to use our water because we are not using. please give attention to electricty production from water and rivers at the earliest.
Victor Rosez Aug 10, 2012 08:31am
What is the degree of air pollution(CO2 and other) that this technique will produce? Did they make a study on it? This project looks good instead of creating more nuclear plants, but everything always has two sides of course.... So this question has to be asked too to the governments.
Moazzam Aug 10, 2012 08:56am
We hope that this project shall not be stopped by the successive governments as the success of this project is vital for the prosperity of the people of Pakistan.
Akram Aug 10, 2012 01:53pm
my friend if you follow the Thar story you will find many of the bigger mining companies are wary of Thar because its lignite coal, i.e. the most polluting kind of coal to burn. The bigger mining companies prefer Thermal coal, which has higher energy value and is more economic to mine and less polluting. This does not mean Thar is not good, it is good enough to generate energy in Pakistan with possibly some export potential in our region. It is generating interest in foreign miners in Russia and South Korea, but its still in development. watch this space.
Syed Mahdi Rashdi Aug 10, 2012 05:50pm
It is a welcome gesture that government looks serious about development of thar coal. If this programme had been launched a decade ago, perhaps there would have no energy crisis.
Safdar Aug 10, 2012 08:12pm
The Sindh CM claims 83% jobs went to locals. What the PM would say about the projects in Balochistan?
Safdar Aug 10, 2012 08:19pm Iqbal said...if there is little moisture this soil is very fertile....but alas these lusty political rivers want to suck that little moisture also