India Running Short on Coal; Could Force the Country to Increase Imports
India is running dangerously low on coal and the country could be forced to increase imports so power plants can generate enough electricity.
State-owned Coal India Limited (CIL) has been asked to increase coal production at existing mine as production has been failing to meet targets and more imported coal has been required. India’s electricity shortage climbed to 7,000MW in May.
"We hope that a good amount of additional coal can be mined at least as an interim measure for a few years till we are able to sort out the problem which the sector has faced over the last five to six years," power minister Piyush Goyal said.
Although India already imports nearly 20 percent of its coal requirements, Goyal is requesting the company import more despite increased costs. India’s power plants are not running at optimum levels and more coal is required to help ramp up production.
India’s net coal-fired electricity generation is expected to grow by a total of 910 terawatt hours from 2010 to 2040, doubling its total in 2010. India’s coal consumption for electricity generation is expected to double.
According to professor John Rolfe of CQUniversity, Australia could be a viable option for coal supply.
He said the election of Narendra Modi as Prime Minister for India will help grow the country’s economy faster.
"The previous government were quite successful in the early stages at economic growth but over time that growth slowed and they ran into lots of problems trying to get major changes through the different states of India,” Wolfe said.
"Modi's a breath of fresh air, he's also got a much bigger mandate, so he'll have a lot more power to make major changes in the economy.”
The demand for coal in India is forecasted to reach 551.60 million mt in 2015 as supply of coal is predicted to amount to just 466.89 million mt.
Vale invests $150mn to extend life of Manitoba operations
Vale has announced a $150mn CAD investment to extend current mining activities in Thompson, Manitoba by 10 years while aggressive exploration drilling of known orebodies holds the promise of mining well past 2040.
Global energy transition is boosting the market for nickel
The Thompson Mine Expansion is a two-phase project. The announcement represents Phase 1 and includes critical infrastructure such as new ventilation raises and fans, increased backfill capacity and additional power distribution. The changes are forecast to improve current production by 30%.
“This is the largest single investment we have made in our Thompson operations in the past two decades,” said Mark Travers, Executive Vice-President for Base Metals with Vale. “It is significant news for our employees, for the Thompson community and for the Province of Manitoba.
“The global movement to electric vehicles, renewable energies and carbon reduction has shone a welcome spotlight on nickel – positioning the metal we mine as a key contributor to a greener future and boosting world demand. We are proud that Thompson can be part of that future and part of the low carbon solution.”
Vale continues drilling program at Manitoba
Coupled with today’s announcement, Vale is continuing an extensive drilling program to further define known orebodies and search for new mineralization.
“This $150mn investment is just one part of our ambitious Thompson turnaround story. It is an indicator of our confidence in a long future for the Thompson operations,” added Dino Otranto, Chief Operating Officer for Vale’s North Atlantic Base Metals operations.
“Active collaboration between our design team, technical services, USW Local 6166, and our entire Thompson workforce has delivered a safe, efficient and fit-for-purpose plan that will enable us to extract the Thompson nickel resources for many years to come.”
The Thompson orebody was first discovered in 1956 by Vale (then known as Inco) following the adoption of new exploration technology and the largest exploration program to-date in the company’s history. Mining of the Thompson orebody began in 1961.
“We see the lighting of a path forward to a sustainable and prosperous future for Vale Base Metals in Manitoba,” said Gary Annett, General Manager of Vale’s Manitoba Operations.