Wednesday, 30 November, 2022

CPD for renewable energy to tackle ongoing crisis

Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) underscored the need for using renewable energy and gas exploration to tackle the ongoing fossil-fuel-based power and energy crisis.

The CPD observed this at a press conference titled "Slowdown in global economy and challenges for Bangladesh: How to tackle?" held in its office in the city, said a press release.

The civil society think tank urged the government to put emphasis on gas exploration in order to reduce the over-dependence on imported fossil fuel and better utilise the existing solar-based power infrastructure.

CPD Executive Director Dr Fahmida Khatun briefed the reporters at the press conference while CPD Research Director Dr Khondaker Golam Moazzem and CPD Senior Recourse Fellow Towfiqul Islam Khan, among others, were present on the occasion.

Fahmida Khatun said that energy and power sector confronts multiple challenges- both short and medium term in nature.

"Fortunately, there are chances to reduce the power crisis through some additional power from India. Those plants which are under construction (3384 MW) are highly unlikely to come in generation due to shortages of energy supply. Hence, the power generation and supply crisis is likely to continue unless sufficient fuel is supplied. Even though the power crisis may be eased in the medium term, the long-term tension will continue as the added generation capacity is mainly import based, putting a huge burden of capacity payment on the shoulder of Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB)," she added.

She said measures taken by the government to ease energy crisis is more suitable for the short-term.

"Those are not sufficient to address the medium to long term concerns. Measures taken by the government need proper monitoring and reviewing. Also, in some cases the measures are not consistent," she added.

She also suggested the government to look for long-term loans from the IMF, WB and IDB.

In view of the growing economic crisis, Fahmida Khatun said, the government should form a committee comprising the representatives of the Prime Minister's Office, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Planning, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources, Ministry of Food, Ministry of Agriculture, the Bangladesh Bank and National Board of Revenue (NBR).