New Delhi: Reducing dependence on fossil fuel will remain the prime focus area of the government policy and initiatives, Coal Minister Piyush Goyal said on Wednesday.
"World is conscious about the challenges in the energy sector... Reducing dependence on fossil fuel is going to remain one of the prime focus of the government policy and government initiatives," Goyal, who also holds the portfolio of Railways, said at the World Energy Policy Summit here.
Given that India being is an import dependent economy from perspective of oil and natural gas, he said, it is also necessary to reduce dependent on oil and oil-related products and move to alternate source of energy which are cheaper too.
"I believe being import dependent economy from the perspective of oil and natural gas, it is important for us to assess how we will go forward, on one hand increase our production particulary of natural gas...(on the other hand) reduce demand for oil and oil related products so that we can move to alternate sources of energy," he said.
Over the last four years, the government has made efforts to bring down consumption of fossil fuel and replace it with cleaner and greener fuel, Goyal said. As part of the efforts, the government is giving thrust on renewable energy, the minister said, adding that India launched one of the largest programme to promote renewable energy to produce 100 giga watt (GW) solar energy by 2022.
"The prices of solar power in India is lower against the fossil based energy or coal-based power. So, clearly that one area where we have made significant progress and will continue to focus.
"We have very recently, in the Cabinet, approved a proposal to electrify the entire Indian Railway network. This would probably be the world's first large network to be 100 per cent electrified...the plan will be taken up on mission mode," Goyal said....