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Best case scenario for India’s economic development rests on Nu-clear Power: Report

Why is it in the news?

  • A study by academics at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, funded by the Office of the Principal Scientific Adviser and the Nuclear Power Corporation of India, emphasizes the importance of nuclear energy for India’s economic development and achieving net-zero emissions by 2070.

More about the news

  • Currently, nuclear energy only constitutes 6% of India’s energy mix.
  • The study presents various scenarios, including high, medium, and low economic growth scenarios, as well as different approaches to energy generation, such as focusing on nuclear energy, expanding fossil fuel use with carbon capture and storage, emphasizing renewable energy, or combining all approaches.
  • The best-case scenario identified in the study involves achieving net-zero emissions by 2070, with nuclear power capacity rising five-fold from current levels to 30 GW by 2030 and 265 GW by 2050.
  • In this scenario, nuclear power would contribute 4% of India’s total energy by 2030, increasing to 30% by 2050, while the share of solar power would decrease from 42% in 2030 to 30% in 2050.
  • Coal is expected to remain a significant component of India’s energy system, but transitioning away from coal would require building infrastructure for alternative sources like nuclear power, along with flexible grid infrastructure and energy storage to support renewable energy integration.
  • India would require an estimated ₹150-200 lakh crore between 2020-2070 to finance these energy transitions.
  • Achieving these ambitious goals would require significant investment, including doubling current investments and ensuring sufficient availability of uranium, a critical fuel restricted by international embargo.

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