A coal fired power plant in Singrauli.
Coal India recently announced a massive increase in profits – up 35% net. The people of Delhi are now paying the highest tariff ever – up by over 20% in the last two years. At the same time, many parts of Delhi continue to suffer blackouts and power cuts. This lends a lie to Chief Minister, Sheila Dikshit's promise to deliver uninterrupted power 24-7.
We see massive profits for a dirty retrograde industry that is a relic from the last century. Yet again coal corporation profits are coming above providing power for the people. And the DISCOMs have hiked the tariff on the pretext of increasing input costs as coal prices have been increased and they still seem unsatisfied. Is there a nexus between these entities?
Coal India is a public enterprise but it is clearly more interested in exacting huge profits and not serving the common people. It is time the coal industry was dumped in the dustbin of history. It had its time, but now that is over. Today power can be supplied by renewables, particularly solar. This is the energy source for the 21st century. This is where real economic development can take place.
The government has failed to deliver on its promise of uninterrupted power supply to the people. The public is suffering every day and as the summer gets more intense, the suffering increases. All that the public is getting are high electricity tariffs to pay, power cuts and on the other hand is the profit making coal industry.
We have the solution. We know the way forward which is power from the sun. While the coal industry profits, the people suffer. It doesn't have to be like this - tell Sheila Dixshit that solar is the answer – it is time to retire the obsolete coal industry. Click here.
Paul Horsman is a Climate & Energy Campaigner with Greenpeace International and Shashwat Raj is a Media Officer with Greenpeace India.