India Solar, Wind, Biomass, Biofuels – EAI

Need for biomass power in India

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More than 70% of India’s population depends on biomass and about 32% of the total primary energy use in the country mainly in rural areas is still derived from biomass. Biomass gasification based power production, is relevant today especially in the Indian context mainly because of its potential to provide distributed power at rural level, especially for small remote villages that have good access to biomass but no access to grid power, and which require only small scale power production. Biomass based power is also relevant in the context of climate change and global warming as biomass based power production is net carbon neutral.

  • In 1999 to 2000, more than 85 percent of India’s rural population was dependent on traditional fuels (biomass and cow dung-cake) for their basic energy needs. The use of these fuels in inefficient cooking stoves led to high levels of indoor air pollution, causing wide-spread respiratory and eye diseases, particularly among women. India’s goal is to provide cleaner fuels or other means of cooking to the entire population by 2012.
  • Because of the high costs of connecting these remote villages to the national grid, it is economical to promote projects based on solar energy, biomass gasifiers and small hydro power plants. The government provides up to 90 percent financial assistance for non-conventional energy schemes in these areas.


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