Posted on September 21, 2017 by Jay Faison
I met recently with India’s Secretary of Coal Susheel Kumar after a speech I gave at the International Energy Agency’s Post Combustion Capture Conference in Birmingham. Fascinating. He and his team flew from India for three days to dive into the details of coal carbon capture technology at Southern Company’s National Carbon Capture Center, which ClearPath proudly partners with.
Here’s why they made the trip:
- Secretary Kumar was formally India’s lead climate negotiator for the Paris Agreement. He thinks about both coal and carbon emission reductions.
- India has a 2035 Technology Vision and it has climate adaptation and clean energy technology all through it – from crop yields, to solar and nuclear, to hydrogen fuel.
- They have no intention of shutting down coal and will continue to build it – at least 300 million Indians still don’t have access to electricity (imagine more than 90% of Americans not having access to power).
- Their plan does call to get 24% of their power from renewables in 2027, and to double their nuclear generation in the next 10 years, aiming for 25% nuclear in 2050.
- They want to explore and consider carbon capture to get more oil out of depleted wells and lower their dependence on foreign oil, which amounts to nearly $300 million worth of imports every day.
- His children work in the US – one is a doctor and one works in the financial services industry. Small world!
I found Secretary Kumar an engaging and kind man, with a calm and in-control demeanor about him. I enjoyed our conversation immensely, and I walked away thinking about how focused India is on clean energy technology.