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Vedanta Ltd to boost renewable energy capacity and halt new coal-fired units: Report
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Vedanta Ltd to boost renewable energy capacity and halt new coal-fired units: Report

| @indiablooms | 22 May 2024, 11:13 pm

Mumbai: Vedanta Ltd aluminium business will stop adding coal-fired capacity, indicating a major shift towards renewable energy, media reported

According to a Reuters report, CEO John Slaven has said Vedanta Aluminium, India's largest aluminium producer, aims to increase its renewable energy usage from nearly 5% currently to 30% by 2030.

The London-headquartered company presently has 4 .8 gigawatts of coal-based power generation capacity.

Slaven said in an interview with Reuters that the company is securing 1.3 GW of renewable energy—comprising both solar and wind power—from Serentica Renewables in India.

As the world's third-largest greenhouse gas emitter, India relies on coal for nearly 50% of its 443 GW installed power capacity.

Although India aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase the share of non-fossil fuels in electricity generation, India’s dependence on coal continues due to its growing energy needs as the world's most populous country.

To support this, India has sought to attract private investment to boost coal-fired power generation capacity by 80 GW by 2032.

However, Vedanta Ltd will continue to push for renewable for its energy-intensive aluminium business.

"We don't want to add additional thermal power. We have got to really increase our renewables, so that's the focus," Slaven was quoted as saying by Reuters.

Other aluminium producers in India are adopting similar strategies, according to the report.

Hindalco Industries, the country's second-largest aluminium maker, plans to rely primarily on renewable energy for any new capacity additions at its smelters, according to a company spokesperson. Hindalco Industries is managed by billionaire Kumar Mangalam Birla, it added.

John Slaven stated that Vedanta Aluminium plans to increase its production capacity to capitalize on India's strong demand for the metal.

India's rapid economic growth is expected to sustain high aluminium demand, eventually making the domestic market more attractive than Vedanta's current top export destinations, which include Southeast Asia, Japan, North America, and South America, he added.

Slaven highlighted that industries such as construction, electrical transmission, wind and solar power, and automobiles will maintain robust demand for aluminium, reported Reuters.

The company aims to raise its aluminium production capacity to 3 million metric tons by 2026, up from about 2.4 million tons currently, and to increase its smelting capacity to 3 million tons from 2.4 million tons, he added.

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