WEF 2018: India has strong focus on renewable energy, says Dharmendra Pradhan
BusinessToday.in January 25, 2018
Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan on Wednesday said India has a strong focus on using renewable energy sources and will achieve its aim of 175 GW of renewable energy by 2022. He, however, acknowledged India's consumption of petroleum would be high and dependent on oil for some more years.
Speaking at a session on 'The New Energy Equation' at the World Economic Forum 2018, he said that PM Narendra Modi was conscious about India's energy needs and the requirement of variations in the country's energy basket.
"Next 20 years, India will be depending on conventional sources of energy - fossil fuels, hydrocarbons. As we are a growing country, I am sure our requirements will grow and we are working towards balancing our requirements," he said.
On balance in pricing
Pradhan said responsible pricing is key to growth of oil industry and called for a price balance. "Our per capita consumption is very low and we will continue to depend on imports...my expectation as a consumer would be that the prices should not pinch our domestic economy. The producing country should look into the interests of the consuming country. We should have more capex in exploration and production area."
On procuring green technology
The minister added that to achieve the ambitious target of 175 GW, India needs low-cost investment and technology. "We are investing heavily on solar, wind, biofuels, ethanol bio-CNG. We need green technology and low-cost investment. This a major challenge we are facing at present," he said.
At present, India's renewable energy capacity is around 61 GW (October last year). Wind dominates the renewable energy pie with 33 GW of installed operational capacity, followed by solar (15.5 GW), small hydro (4.4 GW), bio-power (8W). Experts and government officials feel that India needs an investment of $125 billion to fund its renewable power supply by 2022.