India’s Coal Production Expected to Boom Temporarily

By Editors of Power Engineering

A report by the Indian government indicates the country will double its coal production to 1.5 billion tons by 2020.

The country currently generates 58 percent of its energy from coal. However, that share is expected to gradually shrink to between 42 percent and 48 percent over the next 30 years, Reuters reported.

The report was written by NITI Aayog, which advises the government on policy issues and is chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Institute for Energy Economics Japan.

India is simultaneously the world’s third-largest coal producer and the second-largest coal importer, though the country hopes to cut its imports to zero by the end of this year.

“India would like to use its abundant coal reserves as it provides a cheap source of energy and ensures energy security as well,” the report said.

However, the report suggests India will need to resume importing coal starting in 2037 and as much as 62 percent of its total by 2047 if the country doesn’t make its coal mining more efficient.

Renewable generation is also expected to grow to 175 GW by 2022. The country currently generates four percent of its energy from renewable sources. Natural gas could rise from 6.5 percent of India’s energy now to between ten and 17 percent by 2047.