September 8, 2021 Read More →

Study: No new coal capacity needed to meet India demand by 2030

The Indian Express:

India does not require additional new coal capacity to meet expected demand growth by financial year 2030, according to a report prepared by EMBER, an independent British energy think-tank, in collaboration with Bangalore-based Climate Risk Horizons.

According to the report, which was released on Tuesday, even if India’s power demand grows 5 per cent annually, in line with the most optimistic International Energy Agency projection, coal-fired generation in the financial year 2030 will be lower than in the financial year 2020, as long as India achieves its non-coal generation targets – its renewable energy targets.

“In effect, more coal capacity beyond what’s already under construction isn’t needed to meet the aggregate demand growth by FY 2030,” says the report, adding that the development of new coal plants will lead to “zombie” units – ones which will exist, but not be operational.

India’s peak demand would reach 301 GW by 2030, if it grows at an annual growth rate of 5 per cent, which is also in lines with projections made by the Central Electricity Authority. “If this peak occurs during sunlight hours as recent studies predict, India’s planned solar capacity can cover much of it. Even if it occurs in the evening, substituting the ‘zombie’ coal plants with additional battery storage capacity represents a more flexible, cheaper option,” says the report.

[Esha Roy]

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