We are the world's second-largest importer of coal while we also have the fourth largest coal reserve in the world. India is facing this major crisis where we have only 1 to 2-day coal reserve left Which is the lowest of recent years.
In the last two months, Power Consumption jumped 17% higher compared to 2019, at the same time, coal prices increased 40% at the global level which tends to the lesser imports as India's coal imports fell to a lower level of last two years. Our country generates 70% of the electricity by using coal. Demand for coal in the domestic sector has increased significantly. India's largest coal producer company Coal India also has announced to increase supply to meet up with the domestic market demands.
Based on the sources, it is being said that India may take six months to come out of this coal crisis to ensure all the power plants which are currently facing this coal crisis should not have to face it and could have enough fuel. All 135 plants are now facing this issue as 16 of them had zero stocks as of 29 September.
Power Minister Raj Kumar Singh comments on the situation," I don't know whether I will be comfortable in the next five to six, four to five months." According to Mr. Singh India's large portion is facing a power crisis right now. More than half of the power plants are facing this crisis. India imports approximately 400 million tonnes of coal majorly from Indonesia, Australia as well as South Africa too.
Not only this, but we also produce more than 600 million tonnes of coal for our domestic use. after the second wave as consumption started increasing continuously, our plants started facing this crisis which has now increased to such an extent.
If this shortcoming remains like this, this can lead to a surge in the cost of electricity for consumers. The public is already facing retail inflation, hike in petrol prices, things will become more expensive.
The situation is worrying and if it continues like this so the entire manufacturing sector will get a worse impact. Many experts say, this is a wake-up call for us and it's time to reduce our over-dependency on coal and this is the demand of time that we should shift to renewable energy as much as possible.