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Shri Piyush Goyal to co-chair 3rd India- Australia energy security dialogue to be held in Australia

Shri Piyush Goyal to co-chair 3rd India- Australia energy security dialogue to be held in Australia


Shri Piyush Goyal, Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal and New & Renewable Energy will co-chair 3rd India – Australia Energy Security Dialogue to be held from 8th to 11th February 2016 at Australia.

Besides official dialogue, several Roundtables will be organized during the Energy Security Dialogue with a view to get to know the state of art technologies in the relevant areas. The discussion will also enhance business to business collaboration in different sectors. These roundtables include

(a)    Efficient Coal Mining, Clean Coal Technologies, Coal Gasification (including underground) Mine Safety, Mine Closure etc. at Brisbane.

(b)   Business opportunities for LNG production and trade, Coal Bed Methane at Brisbane.

(c)    Management training and Skills Development in Coal Sector at Brisbane.

(d)   Renewable Energy and Challenges for Grid Integration at Sydney.

(e)    Efficient Coal Based Power Generation and Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) at Sydney.

(f)    Smart Grids, Smart Meters and Energy Efficiency at Sydney.

(g)   Investors Roundtables (Business Community, Investors, Industry Analysts,etc.) at Sydney.

The coal sector of India envisages doubling its production in next five years.  This includes technology development, adopting best mining practices, environment management, development of skills, improvement of safety etc.  Australia being the leading coal producer in the world with very high safety records in coal mining is in a position to help India in improving the mining practices and development of environment friendly technologies.

It is envisaged that the technical cooperation between India and Australia in the coal mining sector would help India in improving the safety, production and productivity of coal mines besides developing clean coal technologies.   In this context, the following areas have been proposed for deliberations in the ensuing meetings of energy security dialogue between both the countries.

  • Underground mining technologies
  • Mine closure and reclamation of mined out areas
  • Mines safety – capacity building
  • Exploration technologies for coal exploration
  • Dry coal beneficiation technologies
  • Development of coal bed methane (CBM)/coal mine methane (CMM)
  • Development of underground coal gasification (UCG)
  • Skill development

 For improvement of safety in coal mines, officials from coal companies are being trained at SIMTARS, Australia under the programme of training for trainers.  It is proposed to enhance the scale of this training covering more number of people from the industry.  It is proposed to set up a virtual reality training centre at ISM, Dhanbad with the help of SIMTARS, Australia and Indian coal mining companies namely CIL and NTPC.

In regard to skill development, both the countries have agreed to set up a Centre of Excellence for Mining at Indian School of Mines (ISM), Dhanbad.  This facility is envisaged to provide opportunities for partnership between Australian institutions and ISM, Dhanbad in the areas of research and development, mining technology, safety and disaster management, clean coal and energy technology etc. and joint training programmes for technological, managerial and operational skill development in coal sector.

Government of India has recently put in place a policy for development of underground coal gasification and MoC is likely to come up with some coal blocks for offer for development of the resource.  The Australian companies can look forward for participation in this area. There is ample scope for the Australian mining companies in participating in the tenders for development of different coal blocks offered to various public sector companies in the recent past.  Coal India Limited is embarking on development of CBM/CMM from their leasehold areas where Australian companies can look forward for participation for developing CBM resource.

Australia has the 11th  largest known reserves of natural gas and is likely to be 4th largest exporter of LNG in the near future.  Petronet LNG Ltd. has a 20 year contract with Gorgon gas to source 1.44 MMT of gas annually. This will be supplied to IOCL, BPCL and HPCL for further distribution. The supplies are expected to begin by November this year and will go a long way in fostering energy security for our country.

During the energy dialogue, India will share its perspective on upcoming opportunities for trade of LNG between India-Australia. Policy collaboration on issues pertaining to LNG trade will also be discussed.  A Roundtable discussion on LNG trade, chaired by Shri Piyush Goyal, will take place in Brisbane on 8th February.   During the Roundtable Indian participants will share their perspective on “growth of natural gas and outlook of energy consumption in India” and the Australian side will share their  perspective on “Upstream development initiatives for facilitating business opportunities for LNG production and trade”.  A strong delegation is being fielded by India and will include representatives of Petronet LNG Limited, GAIL (India) Limited, Indian Oil Corporation Limited, Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited. It is expected to build strong linkages in the field of Natural Gas strengthening existing G2G and B2B linkages.

In context of coal based power generation, the discussion would focus on how Australian Utilities have met the challenge of limiting the emission of pollutants like SOx, NOx, Particulate Matter and Mercury. This is of significance, particularly in view of the strict pollution control norms recently notified by MOEF. Possibility of further improving the efficiency of coal based generation will be explored, including from supercritical and ultra supercritical technologies. Discussions will be held on Carbon Capture and Storage, wherein the experience of Australian companies including that of Global Carbon Capture & Storage Institute, Australia will be discussed. Discussions will also be held to explore the possibility of joint R&D in the field of CCS.

Australia has significant expertise in the large scale deployment of rooftop solar. Australia has set up a photovoltaic School of Excellence at the University of New South Wales. They also have started working on tapping wave energy. However, the large scale deployment of renewable is posing challenges for the stability and security of the grid. The Australian experience in solar scheduling and forecasting will be valuable to India. The experience sharing in rooftop solar specially in context of two way metering and tariffs will help us in our rooftop programme. Possibility of joint research in the area of wave  energy will be explored.

India has announced a Smart Grid Mission. Australia has worked significantly on Smart Grids in the Melbourne area. IEEMA has exported few million Smart Meters to Australia. The experience sharing with Australian utilities with the Smart meters will provide invaluable input to smart meter roll out in India. Australia started a cool roof programme few years back. The Australian experience will help us in the building energy efficiency.

Anand Gupta Editor - EQ Int'l Media Network


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