BHUBANESWAR: The Centre has prepared a National Mission document to achieve 100 million tonne (MT) coal gasification by 2030, said Additional Secretary of the Coal Ministry VK Tiwari on Friday. Addressing the National Mineral Congress here, Tiwari said the country has a reserve of 307 billion tonne of thermal coal and about 80 per cent (pc) of coal produced is used in thermal power plants.
“With environmental concerns and development of renewable energy, diversification of coal for its sustainable use is inevitable. Coal gasification is the future and it is considered a cleaner option compared to burning of coal,” he said.
Tiwari further said technological advancements in the sector are offering greater coal recovery, flexibility in mining operations, increased productivity, greater safety and lower cost. Companies need to adopt new technologies and build digital infrastructure to support the current and future requirements. There is a need to ensure optimal use of technology in the sector, he said.
Highlighting the challenges in the aluminum sector, Tiwari said India is blessed with huge bauxite resources of about 3,896 MT to meet its future needs. However, the country’s reserve constitutes only 17 pc of its resources, which is around 656 MT. “Conversion of those resources into proven reserves to boost bauxite production is the need of the hour. We should come up with plans to use scrap to make quality products,” he observed.
Explaining the roadmap for coal to hydrogen, Tiwari said India’s hydrogen demand is likely to increase to 11.7 MT by 2030 from 6.7 MT per annum now. “Refineries and fertiliser plants are the largest consumers of hydrogen, which is being produced from natural gas. It can be produced through coal in the processes during coal gasification,” he said.
The Coal Ministry, Tiwari said, has started commercialisation of the sector. While double approval has been removed and process of mine allocation made online, gasification has been incentivised, he added.
Union Coal Secretary Anil Kumar Jain inaugurated the event in virtual mode. Industry experts from 20 prominent companies attended the event which is being organised by Indian National Committee of World Mining Congress. On Saturday, the delegates will be visiting the Coal Gasification Plant of JSPL in Angul.