Karachi Electric Supply Company Limited’s power plants go offline due to low gas pressure

Karachi: Karachi Electric Supply Company has expressed deep concern over the return of a NEPRA team which could not complete heat rate test of KESC power generation plants because of the forced shutdown due to extreme low gas pressure.

Due to insufficient gas pressure by SSGC at Korangi Gas Turbines Power Station-II for the past several days, 9 to 12 engines could not be started prior to the heat rate test required to be observed by the visiting NEPRA team. Other engines were operating on “load reduction” due to low gas pressure.

After several attempts and frequent unsuccessful requests to SSGC, the test had to be postponed as it was not possible to attain full station load under these conditions. The 220-MW Combined Cycle Power Plant at Korangi was already offline for want of adequate gas supply.

While strongly criticizing the SSGC for drastic reduction in the gas pressure, KESC urged upon the government to take measures for supply of required gas quantity and pressure of gas so that KESC’s power plants can run at optimal levels.

KESC said that SSGC had repeatedly proved to be insensitive not only towards the power utility’s generation needs for providing electricity to the population of Karachi but had also routed the purpose of NEPRA team’s visit to KESC plants.

KESC demanded of the government to direct SSGC to increase both gas pressure and volume in order to provide relief to 20 million power users of Karachi. It was a matter of concern that the gas company had denied to act upon ECC’s decisions of June 30, 2011, which had envisaged to observe two-day per week gas holiday in industries and CNG stations and gas so saved was to be supplied to KESC.

It was also decided to curtail 20 per cent gas supply to fertilizer factories. KESC appealed to the Federal Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Dr. Asim Hussain to immediately take action for supply of 276 MMCFD gas to KESC.

It is pertinent to note that SSGC is regularly supplying around 300 MMCFD gas to industries, private captive power plants and CNG, while it is continuously ignoring the needs of the KESC that has to meet the electricity needs of 20 million people of Karachi belonging to every socio-economic class.

Whenever SSGC faces any supply constraints, the first victim of gas reduction is always KESC, while other private institutional customers continue to enjoy uninterrupted gas supply. KESC pay the highest price per unit of gas and it is SSGC’s own interest to supply more to KESC.

SSGC has also ignored attractive payment incentive offered by KESC. KESC had offered SSGC to double the payment for every molecule of gas supplied over 200 MMCFD. This potentially meant an additional payment of around one billion rupees every month, however, SSGC has not accepted that offer for reason best known to it.

For more information, contact:
Adil Murtaza
Assistant Manager, Media and PR
Karachi Electric Supply Company Limited (KESC)
2nd Floor, State Life Building No 11, Abdullah Haroon Road, Saddar, Karachi
Tel: +9221 9920 7163
Cell: +92346 822 3641
Email: [email protected]