Energy Conservation

Energy – Generation and Distribution
July 24, 2017
Events Planned
July 31, 2017
  1. Why energy conservation is important?
    1. Global warming
    2. Sustainable development
  2. How can we conserve energy?
    1. Improving Energy Efficiency
    2. Preventing Wastage
    3. Optimum Utilisation of resources
    4. Clean Fuels
    5. Clean Technologies
    6. Renewable Resources
  3. Renewable Energy
    1. Solar
    2. Wind
    3. Biofuels
    4. Small Hydro
    5. Waste to Energy
  4. Mechanisms for Energy Conservation in India
    1. National Mission for enhanced energy efficiency
    2. The Energy Conservation Act
    3. Renewable power purchase obligations
    4. National Clean Energy Fund (NCEF)
    5. Biofuel Blending Scheme
    6. Green Energy Corridor project
    7. Net metering
    8. FAME
    9. R&D for Clean Coal Technologies
  5. Institutions
    1. TERI
    2. BEE
    3. EESL
    4. PCRA
    5. IREDA
    6. SECI
    7. NIWE
    8. ISA

1. Why energy conservation is important?

The World is always on move and energy is central to it. There is a large demand for energy  in order for people to have reasonable incomes and a decent quality of life. Presently the major share of energy needs is full filled by the fossil fuels. This has caused almost irreversible environmental damage.

The idea of ‘energy conservation’ is to meet the dual objectives of promoting sustainable development and also fulfilling the economic development requirements.

1.1 Global warming

Fossil fuel combustion is a major source of green house gases emissions

So,  Energy Saved = Emissions Reduced

1.2 Sustainable development

Sustainable development is economic development together with environmental protection. The environmental protection can be achieved by

  1. Resources sustainability –  Taken care in the generation side to include more renewables in the energy mix to prevent resource depletion
  2. Pollution Control – Shifting towards efficient methods like supercritical technologies and non-polluting fuels like wind and solar, for decreasing emissions and pollution
  3. Energy Conservation – Efficient  use the energy in the demand side and also in industries to reduce wastage, thus reducing the demand

2. How can we conserve energy?

The various dimensions of energy conservation are,

The different conservation techniques can be discussed below.

2.1 Improving Energy Efficiency

Energy can neither be created or destroyed, it can only be transformed into different forms. If the technology can harness the energy in the desirable form with out much wastage, it can be considered energy efficient.

For example,

  1. Incandescent lights used to transform only a maximum upto 10% of electrical energy to useful light, where as LED light the converts at least 25% of the energy input into visible light energy. 
  2. Supercritical technologies for coal-fired power plants have efficiencies above 45%, where as the conventional coal-fired power plants have efficiency of about 32%. 
  3. Compressed Natural Gas(CNG), a clean burning fuel, can be used in vehicles, instead of petrol or diesel

2.2 Preventing Wastage

Fuel consumption can be reduced in may ways

  1. Improving consumer awareness – Ex, Use public transportation as much as possible instead of using own vehicles
  2. Change in habits – Ex, switching of appliances when not in use
  3. Changing the industrial processes – Ex, Older and inefficient equipments can been replaced by new and efficient ones
  4. Technical Advancements – Ex, Elimination of Transmission losses using Ultra High Voltage Transmission and smart grid network

2.3 Optimum Utilisation of resources

Optimum resource utilisation is a holistic approach,

  • taking care of the whole environment
  • to reduce the total energy consumption
  • planning right from the design and material selection
  • maximum use of renewable resources like solar energy and wind

The approach find its application mainly in construction of buildings and urban planning

A. Green Buildings

Green buildings in general terms imply to a new approach to the way we construct, redesign, renovate and develop our residential areas and the surrounding community.  

Image from

Green Building Certifications

The buildings are certified as green based on the following criteria,

  1. conformation to all environment and building codes
  2. reduction in energy and water usage
  3. minimum impact on environment

Some of the common certifications are,

Energy Conservation Building Code of India (ECBC)

  • Formulated by Bureau of Energy Efficiency
  • sets minimum energy standards for commercial buildings
  • The ECBC has been integrated in other rating & compliance systems in India
  • The Ministry of Urban Development’s Model Building Bye-Laws, 2016, says that all buildings with plot size above 200 sq m would comply with these green building norms

Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED)

  • Is a global certification
  • LEED works for all buildings—from homes to corporate headquarters
  • Based on the number of points achieved, a project then receives one of four LEED rating levels: Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum.
  • Awarded by Indian Green Building Council(managed by CII-The Confederation of Indian Industry) in India
  • The certification is  voluntary

Green Rating for Integrated Habitat Assessment (GRIHA) 

  • Is an Indian rating system, adopted as the national rating system for green buildings by the Government of India in 2007 
  • Developed by TERI(The Energy and Resources Institute)
  • considers varied climate of India
  • Gives 1 to 5 star ratings

CIDC Comprehensive Green Rating(CCGR)

  • Developed by Construction Industry development council(CIDC)
  • applies to new and upcoming housing stock of all varieties- residential, commercial, institutional and industrial
  • special emphasis is given to account the total comparative energy consumed – both on site and off site, including in production of materials used

B. Green Cities

Effective use of land resources can be a way of energy conservation.

A model plan by the U.S Green Building Council

  •  The developmental densities should be highest towards the centre of the town
  • High density areas should be served by municipal water and sewer and public transport facilities
  • The public transport system should be efficient to reduce the use of private vehicles
  • Land use planning should be to avoid the travelling distances for the various needs of the inhabitants
  • Outlying areas should not have more constructions
  • The buildings should be constructed as per the green building norms
  • The inhabitants practice energy conservation and eco-friendly way of life

2.4 Clean Fuels

Clean fuels produces nil or reduced emissions.

For example,  

  1. Using LPG instead of fuel wood or dried dung or kerosene in households reduces pollution, as LPG burns almost completely and generates less pollutants.
  2. Non- fossil fuels like  solar, wind, geothermal etc are completely pollution free

2.5 Clean Technologies

Refers to any process, product, or service that reduces the negative environmental impacts. It can be achieved through significant energy efficiency improvements, the sustainable use of resources, or environmental protection activities. It includes new technologies, discovery of  new resources, policy and financial mechanisms


  1. Cogeneration is a industrial process that helps to utilise the steam left over from electricity generation, for heating
  2. Off grid renewable power project is a system, which uses wind energy, biomass energy, hydro power and hybrid systems  to meet the energy requirements of isolated communities in an eco friendly way
  3. Perform Achieve and Trade(PAT) is a financial service that helps energy intensive industries, to enhance the cost effectiveness through trading the energy savings certificates

2.6 Renewable Resources

Fuels which are replenishable in nature, can take care of energy needs, without fear of resources depletion. The various renewable energy resources are discussed in the following session.

3. Renewable Energy

Various renewable energy resources relevant to Indian situations are discussed here.

India’s Target – 175 GW by the year 2022, includes 60 GW from wind power, 100 GW from solar power, 10 GW from biomass power and 5 GW from small hydro power

The potential resources are,

3.1 Solar

  • Solar power capacity in India reached 10 GW in 2017
  • India has both large-scale grid connected solar PV initiatives such as the solar park scheme and grid-connected solar rooftop scheme and specialised schemes such as defence scheme, canal-top scheme, Indo-Pak border scheme etc
  • Solar Radiation Resource Assessment stations have been installed across India by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy to create a database of solar energy potential.
  • Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (The National Solar Mission) 
    • The mission aims at reducing the cost of solar power generation in the country
    • Aims to make India a global leader in solar energy
    • Government has revised the target of Grid Connected Solar Power Projects from 20,000 MW by the year 2021-22 to 100,000 MW by the year 2021-22 
    • There are schemes for development of Solar Parks and Ultra Mega Solar Power Projects 
    • Solar Energy Corporation India (SECI) will administer the scheme under the direction of MNRE.

3.2 Wind

  • Wind leads India’s renewable power sector
  • At present, India is the fourth largest wind energy producer in the World.
  • India added a record 5,400 megawatts (MW) of wind power in 2016-17, exceeding its 4,000MW target.
  • National Offshore Wind Energy Policy – aiming to harness wind power along India’s 7,600 km coastline
  • Draft National Wind-Solar Hybrid Policy aims to provide a framework for promotion of large grid connected wind-solar PV system for achieving better grid stability
  • The National Wind Energy Mission aims to add 60 GW Wind Energy Capacity by 2022 and State specific wind energy schemes aims to achieve over 4000 MW in various states

3.3 Biofuels

National Policy on Biofuels aims to bring about accelerated development and promotion of the cultivation, production and use of Biofuels to increasingly substitute petrol and diesel for transport and be used in stationary and other applications

  1. Bio-diesel production will be taken up from non-edible oil seeds in waste /degraded / marginal lands
  2. An indicative target of 20% blending of bio-fuels, both for bio-diesel and bio- ethanol, by 2017 has been proposed
  3. Major thrust is being given to development of second generation Biofuels
  4. An Indo-US MoU has been signed on Biofuels with focus on joint R&D, particularly on second generation biofuels such as, cellulosic ethanol and algal biodiesel

3.4 Small Hydro

Large hydro power projects are considered environmentally unsustainable due to its 

  • Effect on natural flow of rivers
  • Inundation of large area under reservoir, including forest lands, which causes increased methane emissions
  • Problems of deforestation, siltation etc
  • Issues associated with relocation and rehabilitation of human settlements

Small Hydro Power (SHP) projects(upto 25 MW) are preferred  in place of large projects.

Class Station Capacity in kW
Micro Hydro Up to 100
Mini Hydro 101 to 2000
Small Hydro 2001 to 25000

The SHP programme in India is now essentially private investment driven.

3.5 Waste to Energy

  • Any organic waste from urban and rural areas and industries is a resource due to its ability to get degraded, resulting in energy generation.
  • Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA) estimates indicate that India has so far realised only about 2% of its waste-to-energy potential
  • The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy is promoting all the Technology Options available for setting up projects for recovery of energy from urban wastes.
  • India’s largest waste-to-energy plant was inaugurated at Narela-Bawana, Delhi in 2017

4. Mechanisms for Energy conservation in India

There are several missions, policies, institutions and the projects aimed to achieve energy conservation. Apart from these, there are several implementation mechanisms like PAT, energy ratings etc

4.1 National Mission for enhanced energy efficiency(NMEEE)

The NMEEE is one of the eight missions under the National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC).

The mission aims to strengthen the market for energy efficiency. There four initiatives for the energy intensive industries are,

  1. Perform Achieve and Trade Scheme (PAT) – a regulatory instrument to reduce specific energy consumption in energy intensive industries. There is market based mechanism to trade  excess energy savings.
  2. Market Transformation for Energy Efficiency (MTEE) for accelerating the shift to energy efficient appliances in designated sectors. Bachat Lamp Yojana (BLY) – for energy efficient lighting is under this scheme
  3. Energy Efficiency Financing Platform (EEFP) – for creation of mechanisms to finance the energy saving projects
  4. Framework for Energy Efficient Economic Development (FEEED) – for development of fiscal instruments to promote energy efficiency

4.2 The Energy Conservation Act

  • The Energy Conservation Act (EC Act) was enacted in 2001 with the goal of reducing energy intensity of Indian economy
  • Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) was set up to facilitate the implementation of the Act
  • The Act provides regulatory mandate for:
    • standards & labelling of equipment and appliances;
    • energy conservation building codes for commercial buildings;
    • energy consumption norms for energy intensive industries.

A. Standards & labelling of equipment and appliances

  • The programme was initiated in 2006 to provide the consumer an informed choice about the energy saving
  • The scheme is invoked for 19 equipment/appliances
  • The 4 products – Room Air Conditioners, Fluorescent Tube Lights, Frost Free Refrigerators and Distribution Transformers have been notified under mandatory labelling from 2010
  • The other appliances are presently under voluntary labelling phase.

B.The Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC)

  • ECBC sets minimum energy standards for new commercial buildings having a connected load of 100kW or contract demand of 120 KVA and above
  • The state governments have the flexibility to modify the code to suit local or regional needs
  • Bureau of Energy Efficiency developed a voluntary Star Rating Programme for buildings

C. Demand Side Management (DSM) Scheme

The scheme aims to achieve energy efficiency in individual sectors like agriculture, municipality through energy efficient appliances, conducting energy audit etc

4.3 Renewable power purchase obligations(RPOs)

  • RPOs mandates a certain minimum percentage of total power consumption to be achieved through renewable energy.
  • It is applicable to electricity distribution companies and some large power consumers.
  • They can either generate or to purchase from renewable energy (RE) sources.
  • This obligation creates market for the renewable power .
  • Renewable Energy Certificate(REC) is used to trade the renewable power.
  • The National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) has set an ambitious RPO target of 15% by 2020

4.4 National Clean Energy Fund (NCEF)

This fund was created in 2010-11 using the carbon tax(clean energy cess) as a non lapsable fund under Public Accounts. Any project or scheme relating to Innovative methods to adopt to Clean Energy technology and Research & Development are eligible for funding under the NCEF. They can include

  • Smart grid technology
  • Renewable applications with solar, wind, tidal and geothermal energy
  • Renewable energy infrastructure areas such as Silicon Manufacturing
  • Clean Fossil Energy including coal gasification, shale gas, Coal Bed Methane, advanced turbine and technology etc
  • Advanced research, carbon capture and sequestration as also carbon capture and reformation
  • Basic Energy Sciences including energy storage for hybrid and plug-in electric vehicles, solid state lighting, catalysis, biological and environmental research, advanced computing, high energy and nuclear physics etc
  • Mission projects identified in the National Action Plan on Climate Change

4.5 Biofuel blending Scheme

  • Ethanol blending is blending petrol with ethanol. In order to reduce vehicle exhaust emissions and also to reduce the import burden on account of crude petroleum.
  • As per National Policy on Bio-fuels, oil companies were required to sell petrol blended with at least 5% of ethanol. It proposed that the blending level be increased to 20% by 2017.
  • Government is planning a new policy to take up ethanol blending in petrol to 22.5 per cent and in diesel to 15 per cent.

4.6 Green Energy Corridor project

  • For integrating renewable energy with the main grid.
  • Many Intra-State and Inter-State transmission system has been identified as a part of ‘Green Energy Corridors’.
  • The work for the first green energy corridor project with an ultra high-voltage direct current (UHVDC) link over 1,800km from Raigarh in Central India to Pugalur in Tamil Nadu was started in May 2017.

4.7 Net metering 

If there is a net metering incentive policy in the state and if there is a net meter on the rooftop, then individuals can get financial incentives for the power generated in their households.

4.8 Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid & Electric Vehicles (FAME India)

  • Is under the National Electric Mobility Mission Plan for 2020
  • To promote eco- friendly vehicles
  • Government has been offering incentives on electric and hybrid vehicles under the scheme in pilot mode

4.9 R&D for Clean Coal Technologies

In 2016, R&D Project for “Development of Advanced Ultra Supercritical Technology for Thermal Power Plants” on a Mission Mode was approved.

5. Institutions

5.1 The Energy and Resources Institute(TERI)

TERI was established in 1974 as an information centre on energy issues. Now it is a major research institute, whose key focus lies in promoting:

  • Clean energy
  • Water management
  • Pollution management
  • Sustainable agriculture
  • Climate resilience

5.2 Bureau of Energy Efficiency(BEE)

  • Set up under the provisions of the Energy Conservation Act, 2001.
  • To develop policies and strategies with a thrust on self-regulation and market principles
  • Primary objective is reducing energy intensity of the Indian economy
    • Has introduced energy star ratings for electrical appliances. A new star rating methodology called Indian Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (ISEER) developed for air conditioners.
    • The Corporate Average Fuel Consumption Standards (CAFC) for passenger cars
    • Has developed building codes
    • Regulates the energy auditing 

5.3 Energy Efficiency Services Limited ( EESL)

  • Is a Joint Venture of PSUs  under Ministry of Power
  • Is implementing ‘UJALA’ or ‘Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All’ Programme
    • The National LED programme  aims to convert all conventional street lights with LED street lights 
    • Domestic Efficient Lighting Programme (DELP) aims to provide LED bulbs to domestic households, is renamed as “UJALA”
  • Implements the schemes – National Energy Efficient Agriculture Pumps Programme and National Energy Efficient Fan Programme

5.4 Petroleum Conservation Research Association(PCRA)

  • Is a national government agency engaged in promoting energy efficiency in various sectors of economy. 
  • It helps the government in proposing policies and strategies for petroleum conservation.

5.5 The Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA)

  • Is a Public Limited Government Company established as a Non-Banking Financial Institution
  • Engaged in promoting, developing and extending financial assistance for setting up projects relating to new and renewable sources of energy, energy efficiency and energy conservation
  • It has been awarded Mini Ratna Status

5.6 The Solar Energy Corporation of India(SECI)

  • To implement the solar mission and other projects and also trading the solar power
  • Has initiated various activities for setting up of solar power plants as also for the promotion and commercialization of solar energy technologies
  • The Union Cabinet gave its approval to rename it as the Renewable Energy Corporation of India (RECI)

5.7 National Institute of Wind Energy

  • An autonomous R&D institution by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) at Chennai
  • To find complete solutions for the kinds of difficulties and improvements in the entire spectrum of the wind energy sector 

5.8 International Solar Alliance(ISA)

  • The Prime Minister of India and the President of France laid the foundation stone for the International Solar Alliance in 2016
  • The ISA will focus on promoting and developing solar energy and solar products for countries lying wholly or partially between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn
  • Aims to facilitate increased deployment of solar technologies, including in poor and remote regions


  1. Shriya says:

    Thanku so much for these efforts….
    All schemes related to energy and env are here…. I m facing one problem that pictures are not clear..

  2. RUPESH says:

    article is very much helpful …but plz post some quiz question based on the article…….which u hv put on some article earlier………

  3. shiv says:

    when i take a quiz after completing the topic… i get a full satisfaction like i have digested the whole topic
    but for last 2 3 topics i am not getting that kind of satisfaction….so plz guys quiz is must

    and by the way thank you very much for all your wonderful efforts

  4. Trilochan sahoo says:

    awesome work sir, it is very much helpful sir

  5. Om says:

    Sir quiz pls..

  6. chandan kumar says:

    please publish engg mathematics and aptitude material..


    May I know why we are not finding any IES GS topics in 2018? I can see only topics posted in 2017.

  8. Kaleeprasad says:

    Very helpful,thanq

  9. NEERAJ KUMAR Dandriyal says:

    Thankyou sir

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