Sustainable Development

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Sustainable Energy for India’s Rural Development
Anil K Rajvanshi Nimbkar Agricultural Research Institute (NARI) Phaltan, Maharashtra, INDIA www.nariphaltan.org

China 2007

1

Structure of talk
Present problems in rural India Decentralized high technology solutions Energy production from agriculture Energy devices for cooking and lighting

Financial and other instruments Other issues

China 2007

2

Present problems in rural India
60% of rural population (~ 400 million) in India live in primitive conditions. This sorry state exists even after 60 years of independence. No electricity and primitive cookstoves. Around 300,000 deaths/yr take place because of pollution. 54% of India’s population is below 25 years and most of them live in rural areas with very little employment opportunities. 1/4th of our population or 260 million live on < $ 1/day. China 2007 3

Problems contd…
Because of rural poverty large scale migration to cities takes place leading to serious urban problems. Increased aspirations because of mass media are leading to social unrest. Riots in various cities. Release of bottled-up emotions. Spark could be from any source. Energy is the basis of life. Lack of it produces economic stagnation and social upheavals. China 2007 4

Problems contd..
Serious energy crisis in India. Per capita electricity in India 553 kWh/yr or 4% that in US and lowest in the world. In rural households 57 kWh/yr per capita electricity consumption. Linkage of HDI to electricity consumption. Last year India imported $ 45 b worth of petroleum products. Serious balance of payment problems. 8-9% p.a. growth in petroleum consumption. India and China’s Oil consumption at present rate will create world wide crisis. WW III ? Need for alternatives. China 2007 5

Governance
All the above problems in India are result of nongovernance. Centralized production and control inherently leads to corruption. Decentralization leads to accountability. Governance is the first casualty of corruption. Multiple ministries in GOI has further compounded the problem. With proper governance, one of the best technological solutions for the above problems is energy production via agriculture. Energy from agriculture can provide rural wealth and create employment. Can bring 60% marginalized people into mainstream India, without which India cannot become an economic superpower. China 2007 6

Energy Production
India produces ~ 600-1000 million tons/yr of agricultural residues. Mostly burned in fields. Creates environmental pollution and loss of energy. In any agriculture 25-40% of produce is food and rest are residues. No remunerations from residues, hence farming is uneconomical. No industry can survive on such norms. Need for energy planners to seriously think of linking energy with agriculture. Residues for energy can give an extra income of $ 50-100/acre/season to the farmers. Insurance against distress sale of crops. With increased agriculture the residues will increase. China 2007 7

Energy Production…
From crops and residues we can produce three types of fuel Liquid fuels like ethanol, biodiesel or pyrolysis oil. Gaseous fuel like methane (biogas). Electricity via biomass-based power plants. Residues can produce 156 b l/yr of ethanol which is 42% of India’s oil demand in 2012; or 80% of oil demand via pyrolysis oil; or 80,000 MW of electric power. Electricity and liquid fuel production in rural areas will bring tremendous wealth. In India it is estimated to be 10 billion dollars/yr. It can also provide 30 m jobs. China 2007 8

Energy Production (cont..)
With increased industrial demand for fuel and electricity, large tracts of farmlands may come under fuel crops. Issues of food vs. fuel. Need to develop multipurpose crops. NARI’s work on Sweet sorghum. Jatropha for biodiesel on poor lands. ½ million ha planted. Other non-edible oilseed crops needed. 50-60 biomass based power plants in India of 6-10 MW capacity. Many more...
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