Thar Coal Energy Project is underway and holds a crucial position in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). As a matter of fact, when the country starves for the energy it needs to run the economy, Thar Coal is the most feasible and viable source to power generation. It can go a long way to meet the increasing energy demand in future. The total area of 9,600 square kilometers of coal reserves has been divided in thirteen blocks of varying sizes. Currently, the development work is in progress on two of its blocks; i.e. Block-I and Block-II.

The development of Thar Coal cannot be made possible single handedly. To reach the ultimate outcome of the project, various government agencies have to join hands to strive for the common goal. And this has been observed so far. Each concerned government agency has left no stone unturned; be it Energy Department, Mines & Minerals Development Department, Works & Services Department, or the Irrigation Department of Sindh.

The desert of Thar lies in Eastern and South-Eastern part of Sindh province. The area is very dry with limited water resources and scanty annual rainfall. Therefore, the supply of water for coal mines, power plants and other purposes is a vital job. Irrigation Department Sindh has taken the task and fulfilling it responsibly. The master plan of water supply to Thar Coal Project encompasses different small scale projects which are under way.

Sindh-Engro Coal Mining Company (SECMC) intends to develop Block-II of Thar Coal field first, which is around 95 square kilometers in area and is estimated to contain 2 billion tonnes of coal. Initially, a 660MW power plant is proposed which shall be able generate power by 2018-19. In order to meet the water requirement, Sindh Irrigation Department plans to draw water from a spinal drain of Left Bank Outfall Drain (LBOD). The LBOD water contains various contaminants, so to make it fit for supply to the plant a treatment arrangement has be established.

The water from LBOD will be pumped to storage ponds at Nabisar, from where it will undergo pre-treatment to reduce the intensity of chemical parameters such as Silt Density Index (SDI), Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD), Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD) and Total Suspended Solids (TSS). The installation of pre-treatment plant is underway and is aimed at making the water fit for further treatment by Reverse Osmosis (RO) Plant. After the final treatment of water by RO Plant at Nabisar, water shall be pumped to the site of power plant.

On similar lines, water arrangement for Block-I of Thar Coal field has also been planned and is in implementation phase. The water is being supplied from Nara Canal to the site of power plant.

This effort by Sindh Irrigation Department is another feather in its cap besides other successfully completed projects. The development of Thar Coal has potential to drastically change the map of the desert and to make it as developed as other cities of the country.