According to reports, the Railways is adopting an environment-friendly attitude and is now mulling over combating energy crisis.
It is planning to set up a solar energy producing plants and self-sustaining hydro-electric plants at vacant railway lands in the country.
The plans were announced by Union Railway Minister H Muniyappa at the Oil and Gas Conservation Fortnight organised at the Bangalore Palace Grounds. Muniyappa said: “Conservation is only one part of the energy crisis. To combat the crisis, we have to develop alternative energy sources that can be used instead of fossil fuel,” he said. He added that this was important considering over 100 million tonnes of fuel are used in India every day and this number will only grow with rapidly increasing manufacture of vehicles.”
The minister said: “We can conserve energy by reducing the use of private transport. Considering that the use of fuel by railways is much less compared to other vehicles, by 2020, we hope to expand our total reach to at least 2 lakh, so that more people can use the railways instead of depending on buses, cars, and private transport for commuting,” he said.
“The fact that India imports over 83% of the totally consumed fuel is important when we consider that although 5% of our fuel is mixed with ethanol, petrol would only last for about 48.2 years and gas in about 58.6 years,” said B Ashok, state-level coordinator for the Indian Oil.