From the Deccan Herald (Bangalore):
Coal shortages will be a thing of the past and India won’t need to import dry fuel by 2017, except to meet requirements of the power plants located near coastal area, Union Minister Piyush Goyal said today.
“I have been on record to say that I judged that by 2017, India should not need to import coal except for those coastal plants where it is very difficult to transmit coal. I am fairly confident the era of shortages is over,” Goyal said here addressing at a KPMG event ENrich 2015.
“At next level of UDAY we are looking at complete ability to exchange coal or to swap coal, complete synergy in the in power and coal sectors so that coal is used most efficiently by the most efficient power plants at the nearest location and power is transmitted rather than coal,” said the Minister for Coal, Power and New & Renewable Energy.
Coal imports are declining and they fell for the fourth consecutive month in October by 5.1 per cent to 14.52 million tonnes (MT) over same month year ago.
In September the import of dry fuel dropped by 27.16 per cent to 12.6 MT on rise in domestic production.
India had imported 212.103 million tonnes of coal worth over Rs 1 lakh crore last fiscal. The government is eyeing to achieve 1.5 billion tonnes of coal production by 2020.
India is the third-largest producer of coal after China and the US with 299 billion tonnes of resources and 123 billion tonnes of proven reserves, which may last for over 100 years.
Later, Goyal tweeted, “A quasi sovereign fund is being launched for renewable energy with an RFP soon for appointing the fund manager.”
The minister thinks that the renewable energy capacity target of 175 GW by 2022, is not only doable but necessary also in view of energy security of the country.
Source : IEEFA, November 17th, 2015
URL : http://ieefa.org/india-reiterates-plan-to-end-coal-imports/