Energy

After the end of the Soviet Union, electricity subsidies were terminated and the following energy demand gap was predominantly filled by local biomass resources, such as coal and wood, resulting in increased deforestation and pollution. In certain areas, the average electricity available amounts to less than 4 hours daily during winter.

Tajikistan has enormous hydro power potential as it possesses 4% of the world's hydro power resources and 53% of Central Asia's resources. Yet these resources remain to be sufficiently developed. About 94% of electricity generating capacity is hydroelectric, but only an estimated 5% of its potential is in use. The country faces an energy deficit of 3.0 to 3.5 GWh, resulting in regular blackouts from October to April. Primary energy shares in 2008 consisted of the following: 21.6% oil, 18.3% gas, 56.4% hydro, and coal 3.7%.

The electrification rate is 85.4 . Hydro-electricelectricity generates around 17,00GWh per year. Prices vary but people typically pay 1.5 US cents/kWh. The TajikAluminum Company (TALCO), is the largest consumer in Tajikistan and uses about 50% of total electricity consumption.

Many components of the transmission and distribution system are in bad condition and need to be replaced. Network and commerical losses result in up to 17'% losses. Rural populations experience more difficulties in accessing electric power due to bad conditions of the system, instability of voltage, and high losses.

 

Potential for Renewable Energies:

Since electricity prices are very low due to low prime costs for the large hydro plants, alternative ways to generate electricity have been limited. However, Tajikistan's rivers have great hydropower potential and thus the government has focused on attracting investments for projects for internal use and electricity exports. [4] Furthermore, hydro-power is the only RE source for electricity production on national level, whose input is documented. In addition, recent surveys (see Tajikistan household survey 2012) have confirmed a large interest, especially among the rural population to install solar power in order to decrease energy dependence and some micro-finance institutions have already begun to develop credit lines in order to enable the purchase of solar systems.

The estimated solar potential is about 25 billion kWh/year in Tajikistan. There are about 2,100 to 3,000 hours of solar energy per year. While this potential has not yet been exploited, Tajikistan does utilize some solar resources for water heating purposes.

 

Rogun, the Dam of Records: The tallest in the world and the most powerful in the region, it will double the country’s energy production.

The project consists of the construction of a 335-metre-high clay core rockfill dam, the tallest in the world, on the Vakhsh River. The dam will be located in Pamir, one of Central Asia's main mountain ranges.

The agreement between Salini Impregilo and OJSC “Rogun Hydropower Project” (the state-run company that is coordinating the project) concerns the exploitation of the Pamir’s huge hydroelectric potential and includes four lots.

The first lots foresee the diversion of the Vakhsh River that will be done with confluence of two diversion tunnels in a mountainside in order to keep the foundations of the dam dry. It is a very complex task that, because of the strength of the river, will only be able to be done during the winter months when the mountains are covered in snow and the water level is lower. 
Once completed, the plant will have 6 turbines of 600 MW each with a total installed capacity of 3,600 MW (the equivalent of three nuclear power plants).

The most significant impact of the new dam will be to make Tajikistan a point of reference for the energy sector in the region, doubling energy production in the country and strongly contributing to the reduction of power shortages suffered during the winter months.