Indian Coal Sector Targets 9 GW Renewable Energy Capacity by 2030

The Coal Ministry aims to develop solar parks in reclaimed mining areas


The Ministry of Coal, under its net-zero electricity consumption plan for coal/lignite public sector undertakings, has set a renewable energy target of 9 GW in the coal sector by 2030 from the present 1.75 GW.

It will also promote the deployment of rooftop and ground-mounted solar power projects across mining facilities.

It also aims to develop solar parks within the reclaimed mining areas and other suitable land, leveraging underutilized land resources for clean energy generation.

The ministry has also issued directives to coal companies to accelerate the adoption of solar power in their operations, including rooftop solar installations on all government buildings and the development of solar projects in de-coaled areas and available land.

The total solar capacity installed by leading coal companies like Coal India, NLC India, and Singareni Collieries Company (SCCL) is 1,700 MW, and the wind capacity is 51 MW.

The initiatives by the Ministry of Coal align with India’s commitment at the COP-26 to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2070 and the government’s updated Nationally Determined Contributions target to achieve 50% cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel-based energy resources by 2030.

Last October, the Coal Ministry and the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy announced plans to work together to promote green energy initiatives. The Coal Ministry had proposed to make surplus land from coal companies available for private investors interested in establishing green hydrogen projects.

Coal central public sector undertakings possess land in open-cast mines with natural water storage reservoirs and elevations of approximately 100 meters. These areas can be transformed into pump storage projects by constructing top reservoirs. Plans are underway to accelerate the development of such projects.

The Coal Ministry identified 20 abandoned mines to evaluate their feasibility for setting up pumped storage projects and leveraging vast land banks’ economic advantages. The projects will be developed to help utilize solar energy to generate hydroelectricity, promoting sustainable development in the coal sector.