Lahore: Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) has initiated construction work on Jabban Hydropower Rehabilitation Project at a cost of Rs. 3.7 billion, which is scheduled to be completed in one year and nine months.AFD, a financial institution of France, is providing 25 million Euros for the project. Once rehabilitated 22-MW Jabban Hydropower Project will contribute 122 million units of electricity per annum.WAPDA Chairman Shakil Durrani, speaking in a ceremony held at Jabban in Malakand Division of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province in connection with initiation of rehabilitation works on the project, said that WAPDA is implementing a two-prongstrategy for optimum utilization of the indigenous hydropower resources to cope with growing demand of electricity in the country.
On one hand, WAPDA is constructing a number of new hydropower projects on priority, while on the other hand, it is also engaged in executing refurbishment and rehabilitation of its aged hydel power stations. This strategy will help improve the ratio of low-cost hydel electricity in the National Grid so as to stabilize the power tariff, he added.The Chairman said that hydel power projects with a cumulative generation capacity of more than 1400 MW are under construction, while work on 4500-MW Diamer Basha Dam – the largest project in the history of Pakistan – will soon be started. He said that consultancy agreement to carry out feasibility study for up-gradation of generating units of 1000-MW Mangla Power Station was awarded last month. The Chairman further said that selection of the consultants for rehabilitation and refurbishment of 243-MW Warsak Power Station is also under process.
WAPDA Member (Power) Muhammad Qasim Khan and other officers concerned also attended the ceremony.It is pertinent to mention that Jabban Hydropower Station was established in 1937 with a generation capacity of 9.6 MW. It was the biggest hydropower station in the country when Pakistan came into existence. Its generation capacity elevated to 19.6 MW in 1952 with the addition of two turbines of 5 MW each. During the early days of Pakistan when there were no hydel stations like Warsak, Mangla and Tarbela, Jabban Hydropower Station played a pivotal role in the development of newly-born country by generating cheap hydel electricity. After a significant contribution for socio-economic uplift of the remote areas for about seven decades, the power station was badly damaged in a fire incident. Thereafter, WAPDA decided to undertake complete rehabilitation instead of its repair. Under the rehabilitation works, four units of 5.5 MW each will be installed to elevate its generation capacity to 22 MW. – Onlinenews