Earth Day 2017: Fight for Sustainable Living This Year

Do you want the Earth to die at the young age of 454 crore years?

Hoping the answer is a loud “NO”, The Quint analysed government data in a bid to find out how we could prevent this from happening.

Data revealed that over 80 percent of our energy needs are met by fuels that push toxins into our lungs and environment every day.

(Graphic: The Quint)

Non-renewable sources like coal, diesel, natural gas, hydro and nuclear energy are exhaustible and limited. It is high time we wake up and understand how important it is to use and development renewable energy.

Thankfully, India’s is abundantly blessed with vast potential for solar and wind energy, which account for 62 percent and 34 percent of our renewable energy, respectively.

The remaining includes energy generated from small-hydro power, biomass power and waste. However, we are nowhere near exploiting these clean energy sources to their full potential yet.

India has the potential to generate 4,50,000 MW wind energy. Currently, we only generate 29,000 megawatts. (Source: Energy Statistics 2017)

Similarly, India has the potential to generate around 7 lakh 50 thousand megawatts of solar power, but we currently generate only 9,566 megawatts of power.

Only 1.3% of potential solar power is currently being generated. (Source: Energy Statistics 2017)

Renewable energy researcher Aruna Kumarankandath, from the Centre for Science and Environment, says the ruling government is ambitious about making strides in the field of renewable energy.

Aruna Kumarankandath, Centre for Science and Environment The Narendra Modi government has managed to imbibe confidence in investors of renewable energy. They have instilled policy certainty which is crucial for the development of any sector.

Elaborating on the other limitations, Aruna says: “As for wind power, the maximum potential lies in the Western Ghats which coincide with forest areas. Similarly, for solar energy, potential almost always overlaps with habitation. People can opt to build solar panels on rooftops but as initial investments are high, most do not see value in it.”

The Indian government has set themselves an ambitious plan of achieving 1,00,000 MW of solar and 60,000 MW of wind installations by 2022. But it will take some serious green willpower to get there.