Coal based power plants in India use about 4.6 billion cubic metres of water each year
GN Bureau | June 4, 2016
India’s growing consumption of coal for energy is likely to worsen the drought situation as well as water crisis in the coming years.
According to data released by NGO Greenpeace, the coal based power plants in India use about 4.6 billion cubic metres of water each year – which is enough to cater to basic water needs of about 25.1 crore people.
Globally, coal plants are considered to be high water intensive users and China and India lead the world in use of coal for energy. In fact, India has recently replaced US as the second largest user of coal for energy.
The Greenpeace claimed that to have collected data from seven drought hit states that links the conditions there to the increased production of coal based energy.
According to Jai Krishan, Greenpeace campaigner “This drought has been devastating for millions of people, yet we continue to ignore one of the biggest water guzzlers in the country, the coal power sector. Given the scant water supply, we have to prioritise meeting basic human needs and livelihoods over water being diverted for operating a power plant."
The Greenpeace has said given the proposals for power plants, the consumption of water for these is going to be three times higher across seven drought affected states and it could worsen the water crisis and also drought conditions.
He claimed that companies such as NTPC, Adani Power, GMR, Mahagenco, Karnataka Power Corp have already been forced to shut down plants this year due to the severe water crisis, affecting grid stability as well as company revenues.
India has 4% share of world’s water resources but more than 17% of the population.
Environmentalists believe that India needs to manage its water well to avoid frequent droughts and dependence on monsoon for good crop.
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