Energy conservation is a very important part of energy planning and its management. It not only saves energy resources for future, avoids wasteful utilisation of energy, provides solution to energy crisis and ensures higher per capita availability/ consumption but controls environmental degradation and pollution.
New strategy emphasies greater reliance on non-exhaustible and non-conventional sources of energy so as to conserve exhaustible conventional resources like coal, petroleum, natural gas etc. That is why efforts are being made to promote the development and use of non-conventional sources of energy. Another aspect of energy conservation is related to the reduction in consumption of energy.
This can be achieved by change in the individual habits, utilising latest technology, reduce the subsidy and increase the price of the energy. For example, a lot of electricity can be saved by using energy efficient lamps. The Superglue gives 20 per cent more light and saves up to 10 per cent energy.
Similarly many conventional boilers could be replaced by gasifies and a gas turbine stage could be added to the steam turbines to give a combined cycle operation producing 25 to 30 per cent more power from the same amount of coal. Increasing the plant load factor (PLF) of existing thermal plants is another area which offers good scope for energy planning. It is estimated that one per cent increase in PLF yields additional 4 billion units of electricity costing rupees 2,500 crores.
Another significant step in this direction would be to bring down the wastage of energy. In India about 23 per cent of electrical energy is lost during transmission and distribution. This can be curtailed by adopting appropriate measures. Penalty may be levied and legal actions initiated against power pilferage. Privatisation is another suggestion which can obtain desired results and improve the generation, transmission and distribution in the power sector. Energy is key to the modern development.
Hence, there is a need for serious thinking to improve this sector by inducting new technology, attracting more investment, developing non-conventional sources and inculcating habits for saving and conservation.