Sustainable growth is only possible with sustainable energy resources: PM

India can become a global hub for green hydrogen as ample availability of renewable energy gives the country an inherent advantage, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday. The Prime Minister also said that the country’s clear vision is that sustainable growth is only possible with sustainable energy resources.

Speaking at a post-budget webinar, Modi said: “The wide availability of renewable energy gives India an inherent advantage, it can be a global green hydrogen hub.” Noting that the hydrogen ecosystem is interconnected with fertilizers, refineries and the transport sector, he called for innovation by the private sector in the field.

“The hydrogen ecosystem is interconnected with fertilizers, refineries and the transport sector. This is an area where the private sector needs to innovate to fully utilize India’s potential. I promise the private sector that the government is with you in your efforts,” he said. Arguing that sustainable growth is only possible with sustainable energy, he said energy and sustainable growth are inspired by the country’s traditional practices and provide a pathway for our future needs and aspirations.

Modi said he promoted sustainable living at the COP 26 summit in Glasgow last year with a pledge to become a net zero country by 2070. “In Glasgow we promised to become a net zero country. zero by 2070. Mission LIFE – Lifestyle for the environment. By 2030, we aim for 50% of our installed energy capacity to come from non-fossil sources. “India has set goals and we see them as opportunities. India has walked this road with the same vision for the past few years,” he said.

The prime minister said there was still a lot to be done to make more energy-efficient products, including household appliances. “Energy savings and production are equally important for sustainability. We need to do much more to build more energy efficient air conditioners, heaters, geysers and similar devices here in India. The LED bulbs used to cost Rs 300-Rs 400. Our government has increased its production which has reduced the cost. We have distributed nearly 37 crore of LED bulbs under UJALA, saving a lot of electricity, money for the poor and carbon emissions,” Modi said.

He said energy storage is a big challenge alongside renewables. “We also placed a high priority on storage capacity. In this year’s budget, we have included a battery swap policy and interoperability standards,” he said. On ethanol blending, Modi said it takes priority in mission mode, adding that there is a need to further upgrade sugar factories and distilleries. He said technology upgrading was needed in sugar mills and distilleries to produce by-products like biogas.

“We have planned four pilot projects for coal gasification, and innovation is also needed in this sector. Ethanol blending was also promoted. We need to modernize our sugar mills and distilleries,” he said. The Prime Minister said that India’s energy demand will continue to increase and the country must switch to renewable energy. “We also need to advance clean cooking. Solar gas can be a huge market for our startups,” he said. The webinar also brought together the Ministries of External Affairs, Coal, Power, Oil and Natural Gas, Environment, and New and Renewable Energy.

With PTI inputs