Government committed to widening energy basket: PMMarch 24th, 2008 - 5:46 pm ICT by admin
New Delhi, March 24 (IANS) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Monday said the government was committed to further development of nuclear energy, both as an environment-friendly source of power and as a means of widening the energy basket available. “Our strategy for energy security is a multi-pronged strategy. We do not have the luxury of depending on only one or two sources. While some sources of energy may be cheap today we have to think for the future,” Manmohan Singh said while laying the foundation stone of the 1,500 MW Pragati power project in Bawana, just outside Delhi.
“At the same time, we must also further develop our nuclear energy potential. Our government is committed to further development of nuclear energy both as an environment-friendly source of power and as a means of widening the energy basket available to us.”
The Bawana project is based on natural gas and is to be commissioned ahead of the 2010 Commonwealth Games.
“We have to think for future generations. Our energy needs are bound to grow. We will be failing in our duty to our nation, and to posterity, if we do not look ahead and take steps not just for today or tomorrow, but for future generations,” the prime minister said.
This power project with an investment of over Rs.40 billion is expected to bridge a major gap in the city’s electricity requirements and also meet the power required for Delhi to host the Commonwealth Games.
The United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government is trying to push through a civilian deal with the US that would give it access to nuclear fuel but it is being opposed by the Left allies.
Referring to the booming economy, Manmohan Singh said that the demand for electricity was becoming more than existing sources of supply.
“With our economy growing at eight to nine percent every annum, with growing urbanisation and rising prosperity, the demand for electricity is outpacing existing sources of supply.
“Our government has taken many steps to increase coal production. We are also trying to develop hydro-electricity. But we also have to keep in mind environmental concerns and concerns about people displaced by mining and dams. We are blessed with ample solar energy but it will be some time before we can tap this source in a large quantity.”
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