China has agreed to build a power plant that will supply 1.3GW of electricity from coal in Karnata, the state government said Monday.
The coal plant is the first of its kind in India and will be built by China-backed Indian Power Corp., state energy minister Prakash Javadekar said in a statement.
The power plant will be operational from 2018.
Javadekar made the announcement in a speech in Kashi on Monday to inaugurate the new electricity supply facility, the country’s biggest solar thermal plant.
India is also looking at the coal industry as a way to reduce its reliance on imports.
The country currently imports about 50% of its electricity from foreign countries, mostly from China.
The government hopes to increase the number of coal-fired power plants by 50% by 2030 and also set up a solar thermal project in the state.
The government hopes that these efforts will make India a more energy-independent nation by the year 2020, according to the Indian government.
Jabu Rajan, India’s energy minister, told reporters Monday that India would not stop its efforts to reduce dependence on coal, but said it should be done with caution and be done “with maximum respect for the environment.”