India will have to focus on alternative sources of energy to sustain a high growth rate, said a panel of experts at the Energy Summit organised by hindustantimes.com and CII on Friday. Here is what some experts said:
B M Bansal
Chairman and MD, IOC
- Oil security is of utmost importance; dependence on it is 70-80%
- Given the uncertainty on domestic oil reserves, overseas reserves are needed urgently.
- Like China, India needs to aggressively acquire energy assets in Africa.
- Bio-fuels have to be taken more seriously, as they can meet a part of the energy requirement.
Member, Planning Commission
- India must increase production of oil and gas. The country has abundant gas reserves.
- Using shale technology, gas yields can be increased further.
- Coal, which is highly polluting, may not be a viable fuel in the future.
- Improvement is required in the country's ability to cope with disruption of energy supplies.
Chairman and MD, ONGC
- Growing GDP will drive up energy consumption substantially.
- Indias share of global energy consumption is likely to increase from 5per cent to 15 per cent.
- As the dependence on fossil fuels is likely to remain extremely high, subsidies will not help.
- Shale gas has helped US immensely and ONGC has taken up a pilot project on the same and is working on it.
President (overseas), RIL
- New discoveries of oil reserves are not as big as they were earlier even as demand is growing exponentially.
- 90 per cent of new oil reserves are held by nationalised companies in Russia, Venezuela and Brazil, which are difficult to access.
- India needs to give a big thrust on alternatives, such as nuclear and solar energy.
Joint secy, Ministry of External Affairs
- India's dependence on just three energy sources -oil, gas and coal -is not good for the long term.
- India's diplomatic relations have increased with oil-rich nations, keeping in mind its energy requirements.
- Iran gas pipeline is still on the table though its passage through Pakistan means there will be no quick decisions.
Chief executive officer, Cairn India
- For sustainability, diversification of energy sources, efficient utilisation and competition to ensure fair pricing are needed.
- Like Australia, India could adopt a non-discretionary regime for domestic and foreign players.
- Policies need to be clear on goals and time frames.
- Technology is available, only the right fiscal framework is needed.