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Geothermal energy

GEOTHERMAL energy is power extracted from heat stored in the earth. It can be used for generating electricity. Worldwide, 24 countries are making use of this form of energy.

To produce this type of energy, wells are drilled into underground reservoirs which are approximately one to several miles deep below the earth`s surface. This way, steam and very hot water are brought to the surface for use in a variety of applications.

The people of the Philippines have exploited such resources to reduce dependence on imported oil. San Francisco produces over 750 MW of electricity from geothermal energy. A large geothermal plant can power an entire city.

In Pakistan, virtually no worthwhile effort has been made to exploit this vast reserve of free energy which is cost-effective, reliable, sustainable and environment-friendly.

Also, no incentives have been announced to attract investment in this form of energy so as to provide attraction to private parties to explore and exploit this sector.

Geothermal power requires no fuel and is, therefore, virtually emissions-free and insusceptible to fluctuations in fuel cost.

In Iceland, during winter, geothermal energy meets the heating and hot water requirements of approximately 87 per cent of all buildings.

Plans are under way to turn Iceland into a 100 per cent fossil-fuel-free nation in the near future. Even pavements are heated up with geothermal energy.

We, in Pakistan, need to look into the possibilities of exploiting this free resource and strive to make up for the shortage of electricity.

Just like the Thar coal project, we have to allocate this job to one of the renowned companies of the world which has got immense experience in the exploitation of this resource.

AIR CDRE (Rtd) AZFAR

A. KHAN

Rawalpindi

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