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UK-Pakistan Joint Workshop on Fuels and Energy Systems recap

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World Coal,

The UK-Pakistan Joint Workshop on Fuels and Energy Systems took place on 27 - 28 March at Cambridge University, jointly funded by the British Council and the Pakistan Higher Education Commission, as part of the Researcher Links Programme.

Delegates included 13 British representatives from academic institutes and industry, and six from research institutes in Pakistan, provided a series of insightful talks spanning topics such as anaerobic digestion, carbon capture and storage (CCS), high efficiency lignite power plant, and issues of grid capacity in the UK.

The energy sector in Pakistan is currently booming, helped by an influx of financing and engineering expertise from China, as part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor initiative, and driven by an urgent need to reduce power shortages and a costly reliance on fuel oil power plant. Much of the new activity is in developing an entirely new coal power sector, both through the development of Pakistan’s enormous indigenous Thar lignite reserve, and in the form of several new, high efficiency plants using imported coal. However, there is also large scale deployment of wind, hydro and solar projects, including one of the largest solar plants in the world (1000 MW).

This rapid growth means that Pakistan can greatly benefit from countries such as the UK, which have long experience both with thermal power plant and the integration of renewables, to help build its energy expertise and engineering capacity. The Researcher Links Programme appears to be a highly successful means of achieving this goal.

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