Energy conservation would help in saving `50,000 crore: Goyal
Pursuing energy efficient ways will help reduce electricity consumption and save as much as Rs 50,000 crore, according to Power Minister Piyush Goyal.
Emphasising the need for conserving energy, he said that within next two years government buildings throughout the country would be equipped with energy saving LED (Light Emitting Diode) bulbs.
"India produces about one lakh crore units of electricity and if a ten per cent saving (energy) is made that can save 10,000 crore units," Goyal said on Sunday.
This is equivalent to as much as "Rs 50,000 crore" savings which can be utilised for lighting up homes of five crore people who are without electricity, he said while speaking at the National Energy Conservation Day function here.
Noting that energy conservation would help in the country's economic progress, Goyal said the aim should be to save 10,000 crore units of electricity by end of 2015.
As part of the function, the minister also interacted with students from different parts of the country through video conferencing for nearly an hour.
"If we do it (using LED) in two years, the prices would also come down as economies of scale would be there," Goyal said and suggested that companies can utilise their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds towards this effort.
He was responding to a query by a student from Hyderabad on whether LED bulbs can replace incandescent ones.
In Andhra Pradesh, the state government is distributing LED bulbs to replace incandescent ones.
Goyal also said that he would take up with Human Resource Development Ministry the idea of voluntary inclusion of energy management in the school curriculum.
There was another suggestion about having a toll-free number in each state, where complaints can be registered regarding wastage of power due to not switching off the street lighting system during day time. Responding to it, Goyal said officials would be asked to make this toll-free number operational by January 31, 2015 in all states and Union Territories besides ensuring proper management.
When asked about the need for government vehicles to conserve energy, the minister said he would look into the issue and do something. Goyal, who also holds the portfolios of Coal and New and Renewable Energy, said that all islands would be made green energy islands in the next two years.
Meanwhile, he rued that the dry fuel needs to be imported despite the country having huge reserves.
“It is a sorry state of affairs that even coal, of which India has abundant reserves, needs to be imported. The government is taking a massive programme to ensure that at least thermal coal is produced in India in sufficient measure,” he said.
Power Secretary P K Sinha said states are being encouraged to increase use of equipment that are energy efficient. Already, central government entities have been advised to use energy efficient equipment.