Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal, New & Renewable Energy and Mines said that it is very unfortunate that India continue to import coal from other countries inspite of the fact that we are a coal surplus nation today.
The minister added that this is because our power plants have been designed not to function on indigenous coal.
Goyal informed a gathering at a media event that Coal India has set a target to replace about 15 million tones of imported coal with indigenous coal in the next six months.
The Minister urged everyone to come up with new ideas for finding a sustainable solution for this challenge.
Talking about power decentralization initiatives, the Minister said that apart from shifting to renewable energy, we are focusing upon distributed energy production, where consumers themselves can start generating power. In fact, the rooftop solar power programme will be expanded to 300 MW today to the 40000 MW in the next six years. It will not only provide energy security but will also give support to the thousands of people living in areas inaccessible to grid based power supply, he added.
Discussing the problem of climate change, Shri Goyal reiterated that India believes that fighting climate change is a global responsibility. But having said that, it is imperative that the world strives towards sustainable lifestyle. wasteful usage of energy is a big concern today. He said, “we are very concerned to see how the developed world is going to respond to this challenge in terms of demand side management of their consumption.”