Save to Survive’ campaign

Times of India, Jaipur, September 18, 2011

JAIPUR: In the backdrop of the state facing severe power deficit, compelling the power companies to impose daily power cuts for several hours in different towns, Consumer Unity & Trust Society (CUTS) launched an awareness campaign titled ‘Save to Survive’ due to rise in daily electricity demand.

“There is not much awareness among the consumers about the long-term benefits and the potential of energy efficient products in fighting climate change.

Awareness about the energy-saving methods is expected to increase demand for energy efficient products. In addition to cost savings and economic benefits, residential sector energy saving initiatives can lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The campaign will promote environment improvement by encouraging consumers to use energy efficient products,” George Cheriyan, director, CUTS, said.

While various steps are being taken to increase power supply, it does not seem to keep pace with the ever-increasing demand. The best way to address this deficit is managing the demand side, which is the most cost-effective solution to the growing demand-supply gap. Hence, energy conservation has emerged as a major policy objective, he said.

Energy is the backbone of development and economic growth. In the recent years, India’s energy consumption has been increasing at a very fast rate. India ranks fifth in the world in terms of primary energy consumption and is fast approaching the second spot. India’s power consumption will double by 2020.

India’s power deficit was 13.8% at the end of the last fiscal year as per the Central Electricity Authority. During the current fiscal year, the deficit has been estimated at 12.9% during peak hours. In Rajasthan, the deficit in the current fiscal year is 7% and during peak hours is 8.6%.

About 70% of India’s energy comes from fossil fuels, with coal accounting for 40%, followed by crude oil and natural gas at 24% and 6%, respectively. India is largely dependent on fossil fuel imports for its energy requirements; and by 2030, India’s dependence on such imports is expected to exceed 53% of the country’s total energy consumption. Burning of fossil fuels emits high percentage of carbon, which in turn raises serious environmental and climate change concerns, emphasised George.

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