With mountainous terrain and plentiful rivers, the Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan have great hydropower potential.
Although the Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan both generate a surplus of electricity from hydropower during the summer, these countries suffer from electricity shortages during
their cold winters. Because part of the summer electricity cannot be stored, this surplus cannot be used during their cold winters and the toll on their citizens is enormous.
The export of electricity into the CASA-1000 transmission system from existing Kyrgyz and Tajik hydropower plants would create significant revenues for both countries. The sale of electricity would only be from surplus summer generation, which is otherwise wasted, and would not impact winter generation or make shortages worse. In fact, the revenues from these exports could be invested to prevent winter electricity shortages.
Importing Countries: South Asia
The lack of an adequate supply of electricity is a huge detriment to the economic development and security of Pakistan and Afghanistan.
With growing populations and developing economies, both Pakistan and Afghanistan have fast-growing demand for electricity. At the moment, these countries’ potential for growth is hindered by their electricity scarcity. Without power, businesses cannot invest or create jobs, hospitals and schools operate on expensive and polluting generators, citizens suffer from indoor air pollution caused by burning wood for heating and cooking, and people endure scorching summers without fans or air conditioning. Basic services that people in developed countries take for granted cannot be offered.
By building new transmission facilities, the CASA-1000 Project would give a much-needed boost to Pakistan’s electricity situation. Given the sweltering heat in Pakistan, its peak demand for electricity occurs in the summer when its neighbors to the north have more than enough electricity to share in the system. The imported energy would increase supply when it is needed most.
A functioning, affordable electricity system is critical to Afghanistan’s stability. Transformative projects like CASA-1000 can enable improved transportation, telecommunications, industry, and social services—all aspects of a functioning economy that depend on electricity. The reliable supply of imported energy from the CASA-1000 transmission lines will allow for continued economic development based on existing, clean hydropower resources. Given its location in the transmission system, imported electricity that is not used in Afghanistan could be re-exported to Pakistan. This would generate valuable revenue for Afghanistan that could be re-invested into the country’s continued development.