In line with the Prime Minister’s Panchamrit commitment towards sustainability, the Ministry of Coal has taken a remarkable step by advising all its CPSEs (Central Public Sector Enterprises) to draft net zero plans for the coal mining sector. This move aims to align with the national commitment towards renewable energy and reduce carbon emissions.
Coal India Ltd (CIL), its subsidiaries, and NLC India Ltd (NLCIL) have already prepared a comprehensive three-year action plan outlining specific renewable energy targets. According to the plan, CIL and its subsidiaries are set to install 3,000 MW and 3,731 MW of renewable energy capacity, respectively. SCCL (Singareni Collieries Company Limited) is also actively working towards installing 550 MW of renewable energy capacity. This ambitious endeavor aims to achieve a total renewable energy capacity of over 7,281 MW by 2027.
The progress made so far has been commendable, with approximately 1,600 MW of renewable capacity already created by March 2023. This includes 11 MW by CIL, 1,360 MW by NLCIL, and 224 MW by SCCL. Additionally, 1,769 MW has been awarded for the current financial year (2023-24), with CIL awarding 399 MW and NLCIL awarding 1,370 MW. Looking ahead, an impressive 2,553 MW capacity (1,110 MW by NLCIL and 1,443 MW by CIL) is scheduled to be awarded in the next financial year (2024-25).
CIL and NLCIL are further bolstering their renewable energy initiatives by establishing large solar parks in Gujarat and Rajasthan. CIL has already taken significant steps, signing an agreement to sell 100 MW of solar power to GUVNL (Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Limited) and entering a joint venture with RRVUNL (Rajasthan Rajya Vidyut Utpadan Nigam Limited) to set up a solar park with a capacity of 1,190 MW. NLCIL has also awarded contracts for 300 MW of solar power plants, with one plant supplying power to Rajasthan and the other likely to be set up in Gujarat.
Not stopping there, CIL and its subsidiaries are actively implementing solar power plants on de-coaled land and overburden dumps. They are also working on equipping coal subsidiary houses with rooftop solar facilities. NCL (Northern Coalfields Limited) has partnered with the Government of Uttar Pradesh to establish a massive 1,500 MW floating solar power plant in the Rihand reservoir.
The Ministry of Coal’s ambitious plans underline its dedication to contribute significantly to the country’s renewable energy requirements while ensuring a sustainable future for coal companies. With the directive to achieve net-zero emissions within the prescribed timeline, these coal subsidiaries are well-equipped with internal resources to make a successful transition towards sustainable practices.