Coal sector to ramp up renewable capacity: India Ministry

The coal industry in India is set to boost its renewable energy capacity from a current 1.7 gigawatts to more than 9 GW by 2030, the country’s Ministry of Coal said.

The move is in alignment with the Prime Minister’s ‘Panchamrit’ announcement during COP-26 and to progress towards the goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2070, it said.

“With a keen focus on enhancing renewable energy capacity, the Ministry has set ambitious net-zero electricity consumption plan for Coal/Lignite PSUs. Recognizing the pivotal role of renewables in mitigating environmental impact, the Ministry is actively promoting the deployment of both rooftop solar and ground-mounted solar projects across mining facilities.”

It also noted that it has “innovative plans” in place to develop solar parks within reclaimed mining areas and other “suitable lands” to leverage underutilized land resources for sustainable energy generation.

“This strategic initiative is aligned with the government’s updated NDC target to achieve 50% cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel-based energy resources by 2030,” the agency said.

To minimise mining’s carbon footprints, the Ministry of Coal said it has already issued directives to coal companies to accelerate adoption of solar energy solutions, including installation of rooftop solar panels on all government buildings and the establishment of solar projects in de-coaled areas.

“Presently, the combined solar capacity installed by leading coal companies, including Coal India Limited (CIL), NLC India Limited (NLCIL), and SCCL stands at approximately 1700 MW, supplemented by an additional 51 MW from wind mills,” the agency said.

“The plan for ‘Net Zero’ electricity consumption holds immense promise and benefits for the future.”


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