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Pralhad Joshi Unveils Innovative “Coal Logistics Plan and Policy” to Revolutionize India’s Coal Transportation

New Delhi: In a pioneering move, Union Minister of Coal, Mines, and Parliamentary Affairs, Pralhad Joshi, inaugurated the transformative “Coal Logistics Plan and Policy.” The initiative, organized by the Indian National Committee World Mining Congress under the patronage of the Ministry of Coal, was unveiled at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi.

Addressing the gathering, Pralhad Joshi emphasized the critical need for efficient logistics to meet the surging energy demand projected to reach 1.5 BT by 2030 from the current 980 MT. The Coal Logistics Plan proposes a strategic shift towards a railway-based system in First-Mile Connectivity (FMC) projects, aiming for a 14% reduction in rail logistic costs and an annual cost saving of Rs 21,000 Crore. This transformative approach is expected to minimize air pollution, alleviate traffic congestion, and reduce carbon emissions by approximately 100,000 tonnes per annum. Moreover, a 10% saving in the average turnaround time of wagons nationwide is anticipated.

Highlighting the significance of integrated transportation systems, Joshi emphasized the Ministry’s initiative to integrate Rail-Sea-Rail (RSR) transportation, which has witnessed a remarkable growth of around 50% over the past five years, with plans for further expansion to 120 BT by FY 2030. Additionally, aligned with PM Gati Shakti, 37 critical railway projects have been identified to meet the future coal evacuation demand. The Ministry has launched 15 railway projects to address multimodal connectivity gaps, out of which 5 projects have already been commissioned.

In his keynote address, Amrit Lal Meena, Secretary, Ministry of Coal, reiterated the Ministry’s commitment to enhancing efficiency in coal transportation and fostering robust infrastructure development. Shri Meena highlighted proposals for extensive energy corridor projects, including the construction of new railway lines and capacity augmentation of existing lines. He stressed the importance of maintaining momentum to ensure coal’s integral role in India’s energy security and economic growth while upholding sustainability and social responsibility standards, urging all stakeholders to work in close coordination for easy access to coal for everyone.

M Nagaraju, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Coal, emphasized the importance of seamless coal evacuation in an eco-friendly manner. He highlighted the Ministry’s Integrated Coal Logistics Policy and plan, aimed at developing a technologically enabled, cost-effective, and sustainable logistic ecosystem.

A panel discussion, chaired by M Nagaraju, witnessed industry leaders and representatives deliberating on holistic approaches towards coal transportation. Discussions emphasized India’s potential to achieve self-reliance in the coal sector, contributing to economic growth and environmental sustainability through investment in research and development, technical optimization, and the resolution of transport constraints.

The launch of the Coal Logistics Plan marks a significant milestone in India’s journey towards modernizing coal transportation, enhancing efficiency, and promoting sustainability. With collaborative efforts from government bodies, industry leaders, and stakeholders, India is poised to unlock the full potential of its coal industry, ensuring a resilient and sustainable energy future.

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