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India will continue to bet on coal through 2047

17 May 2017

The Indian government estimates that coal will remain the main energy source in the country for the next 30 years, despite a significant erosion of its share in the energy mix, from about 58% in 2015 to 42-48% by 2047.

India depends on coal for around 3/4 of its power generation (75% in 2016) and is the third largest coal producer - and the third largest greenhouse gas (GHG) emitter - with a target to double its coal production from 708 Mt in 2016 to 1.5 Gt by 2020. Doubling domestic coal production would help India, the second largest coal importer, to meet its plan to cut its thermal coal imports to zero by the end of the fiscal year ending in March 2018. However, the government estimates that imports will be required again when coal production peaks in 2037.

It also estimates that renewable energies should account for 10 to 17% of India's energy demand by 2047, while the share of gas would be limited to 8 to 10%. Much of the increase in energy demand would be covered by imports: oil imports could rise from more than 75% currently to as much as 90% in 2047.

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