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Wednesday, February 8, 2023
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Cabinet orders strategy to prevent power breakdown in future

The Federal Cabinet on Tuesday ordered a comprehensive strategy to avert prolonged power outages in the future by rectifying the faults in the national grid system. The cabinet, in a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, also approved a nationwide public awareness drive about the conservation of power, water, and gas to sensitise the people to the preservation of natural resources. It called for the inclusion of the subject of best international practices on energy conservation in the educational curriculum. It was told that energy conservation efforts at the public, private, domestic, and commercial levels would help reduce the import bill of petroleum products, which had increased remarkably during the last seven years. Besides, behavioural changes would also save foreign exchange worth billions of dollars and reduce the electricity bills of individuals by 30 to 40 percent. The prime minister, expressing annoyance over the widespread power breakdown on Monday, said the inconvenience caused to the people was unacceptable and would not tolerate such happenings in the future. He called for fixing the responsibility of the power outage, which had caused difficulties for the masses as well as the business community. He also directed to identify the factors behind the power breakdown and take necessary measures to prevent its recurrence. The cabinet meeting was told that a committee formed by the prime minister on the power outage had started functioning which would furnish a comprehensive report after deliberating over all the factors. Minister for Power Engineer Khurram Dastgir told the meeting that, as per the initial report, the power supply tripped at 0734 hours on Monday, due to a technical fault, voltage fluctuation, and frequency disruption. As per the prime minister’s directives, he said, all-out resources were used and power supply was restored in all main cities by 2200 hours. Moreover, all major 1112 grid stations were also restored by 0500 hours on Tuesday morning to ensure power supply to the consumers. It was told that except the nuclear and coal power plants, which would take another couple of days to become operational, the power generation from the rest was in progress Moreover, on the prime minister’s directives, the gas-powered power plants had also been made functional to overcome the energy shortfall. Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb gave a detailed briefing to the cabinet on the National Awareness and Communication Strategy for Energy Conservation under which a long-term awareness drive would be launched. She said the Information Ministry carried out the first comprehensive survey to seek public opinion on the energy conservation, and based on its findings, it prepared an awareness drive which would focus on developing the people’s habits, lifestyle and bahaviour to conserve energy.


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