The government has planned to shift public transport and logistics to 100 per cent clean energy sources, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said while addressing a virtual event organised by industry body CII.
Renewable technologies are more labour intensive, Mr Gadkari said, and within this, solar and bio-mass sectors will have the biggest employment generation of over 3 million by 2050.
The government is promoting the use of renewable energy to charge electric vehicles, he said, adding, “we have abundant solar energy. solar-generated electricity charges are very low and ensure a zero-carbon emission cycle in electric vehicle (EV) ecosystem”.
While noting that India has made considerable progress towards improving green energy access over the last decade, the road transport and highways minister added that the country is already on track to reach its goal of 175 GW of installed renewable capacity by 2022.
Noting that currently, the country stands at the 5th position for an overall installed capacity of renewable energy, Mr Gadkari believes that with the government supportive policies and initiatives, India will even surpass the target of renewable energy of 450 GW by 2030.
“Over the last decade, India has made significant progress towards improving green energy access while increasing the integration of renewable energy…We have planned to shift public transport and logistics on 100 per cent green and clean source of energy.”~Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Minister
He also mentioned that infrastructure development plays an important role in the growth and economy of the renewable energy sector in India.
He also said that LNG as a fuel is economically viable for long run trucks and buses.
The government’s decision to shift towards cleaner energy has been embraced wholeheartedly by the industry.
Mr Nilesh Ghule, Co-founder and CEO, TruckBhejo underlines how this will play a significant role in making the logistics sector more sustainable.
“Definitely a welcome move. This will bring down carbon footprint as well as running cost for logistics sector where fuel comprises a significant portion”, he said.
Mr Ghule adds, “Having said that, everything will depend on how robust the infrastructure is built for the EV vehicles, starting from charging stations to maintenance of the vehicles and so on. As EVs adoption increases so does the infrastructure required to support it”.
The recent announcement will surely encourage and bring more investments, job opportunities in this sector and allied services too. And in India, there is a strong need to develop the logistics sector which will be an enabler of growth for other sectors too.~Nilesh Ghule, Co-founder and CEO, TruckBhejo
While talking about their company, he shares how they are also in a testing phase to introduce EVs especially in the last mile delivery and with such support coming from the regulators, it will only boost their efforts.
“If the required infrastructure is set up quickly, EV vehicles will see both new vehicles as well as replacement vehicle demand flowing. Government is already incentivising the truck drivers in terms of better loan rates and EMI structures. Basic infrastructure will ensure no impact on the services, which will also add to the comfort of buying more EV vehicles”, Mr Ghule added.
Infrastructural Development through NIP
Mr Gadkari informed that the government is investing USD 1.4 trillion, that is INR 111 lakh crore for infrastructure development through National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP).
He also added that the Centre has set a target to build roads worth INR 15 lakh crore over 2 years, he added.
In addition to that, 35 locations have been identified for the development of Multimodal Logistics Parks (MMLP) to reduce congestion on corridors and enhance logistic efficiency, he shared.
“These logistic parks would also trigger the development of manufacturing clusters in adjacent rural and tier 2 urban areas,” he added.
Mr Gadkari also highlighted how India is swiftly developing alternative mobility solutions like ropeway, cable car, funicular rail, among others.
“In hilly regions, such as Himachal and Uttarakhand, ropeway and cable car system can be efficiently operated using hydro-power,” he added.