• Coal India shifting strategy to include renewables, while gradually disengaging from coal

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      Patrick Lavery

      Combustion Industry News Editor

The BBC has reported on how Coal India Limited has decided to invest in building 3 GW of solar power generation capacity, in a move that is being seen as a major shift in the company’s strategy. India is the world’s second largest consumer of coal, and Coal India is the country’s largest domestic producer, yet its chairman Pramod Agarwal told Reuters that the company expects coal business to drop off in the coming decades. “Solar will take over (from) coal slowly as a major energy provider in the coming years,” he said. The 3 GW solar installation will be in a joint venture with state-run NLC India.

Coal India’s disengagement with coal will be only gradual, as Mr Agarwal’s comments suggest, and as other news demonstrates. While it has recently closed about 80 mines, it has also approved another 32 mining projects worth a total  US$6.4 billion (€5.4 billion), 24 of them being for extensions of existing mines.