Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister for Petroleum & Natural Gas and Steel, Govt of India, said that the government intends to increase the production of ethanol from agricultural commodities like rotten rice and surplus food grains from 6% to 20% in the next 5 years.
Speaking at ‘FICCI’s 92nd Annual Convention – India: Roadmap to a $5 Trillion Economy’, Pradhan said that in last 5 years energy as a catalyst has contributed towards the economy. “Today India is the 3rd largest energy consumer in the world and is expected to be the number one consumer by 2030. India’s growing energy appetite needs to be driven through a divers and sustainable energy basket. Efforts are being taken towards this direction,” said Pradhan.
Pradhan said that government is committed to convert fossilized fuels like coal into cleaner options. An ambitious programme of converting coal into Syngas has been set up in Odisha with an investment of Rs 60,000 crores, he added.
“Government is committed to strengthening the energy infrastructure by creating a gas grid connecting north to the eastern part of the country under the Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga Project. This will open-up opportunities for monetizing of gas resources existing in the north east India which are presently untapped. With the use of technology and innovation, Hydrogen fuel could also be a component of India’s energy basket,” added Pradhan.
Pradhan said that Indian energy basket will remain a mixed one as dependency on fossil fuel may continue globally with India progressing towards increasing the usage of natural gas and other conventional fuels.
He added that corporates and the wealth creators will have a vital role in achieving the 5 trillion-dollar economy.
Sandip Somany, President, FICCI, said that India being a net importer of energy, with crude imports as high as 84 per cent, and natural gas at 47 percent, is susceptible to economic disruption that could be caused by factors which could be geopolitical or related to the vagaries of nature, which are beyond its control.
“Ensuring our energy security, both by increasing domestic production and investing in equity oil abroad, are an essential part of this energy transition,” said Somany.
“Energy has to fuel growth. This growth has to fuel development and has to be sustainable to raise the standard of living of our people and make the world a greener, cleaner and a better place to live,” added Somany.
Dr Sangita Reddy, President-elect, FICCI, said that the growth demands energy and with the developing world growing faster, countries aiming for higher GDP, the role of energy in economic development of a country is crucial.