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Introspection of the Energy Conservation Success of Indian Railways as stated in Vision 2020 document

By on February 23, 2014

Energy conservation finds a mention in the vision statement of Indian Railways. Was it a show case to impress someone those matters? Is Indian Railways honestly used the buzz word ‘Energy Conservation’ and implemented it in its grass root policies? There is no scope to question the energy efficiency in any of the based specification of product and equipment. Its implementation starts after energy in-efficient product gets introduced in the system. Indian Railways consumed 80% of the energy in traction but none of the specification for electric locomotive considers energy efficiency of electric locomotive. Let us look where Indian Railways stand towards it Vision 2020 on energy conservation after five years of policy implementation –

Sl No Item in the Vision Statement
1 Introduction of new suburban trains in Mumbai with regenerative braking features saving up to 35-40% of the energy.
Indian Railways failed to publish any documentary evidence of energy saving of 35-40% in the new sub-urban trains introduced. What has been demonstrated is the saving of energy on consumed energy. But what if the consumed energy itself is higher and making the specific enegy consumption almost the same to the old design.
2 A Project Design Document (PDD) has been developed in association with the World Bank for registration  under  Clean  Development  Mechanism  (CDM)  with  United  Nations  Framework Convention  on  Climate  Change  (UNFCCC).  The  project  has  already  received  Host  Country Approval and is expected to result in annual reduction of approximately 100,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions 
No one keep any account of reduction of CO2 emission
3 Induction of light-weight stainless steel coaches with enhanced passenger carrying capacity and new designs of freight stock with higher payload to tare ratio. 
It is the volume  instead passenger carrying capacity that matters
4 Annual reduction of 0.14 million tonnes of CO emissions through free distribution of 26 million CFLs (4 CFLs per family) to Railway employees in replacement of energy inefficient incandescent lamps. The project is entirely financed with the carbon credits earned under CDM framework
CFL has been distributed to Railway Employee but how much reduction in maximum demand and unit consumed achieved has not been assessed. Non-traction energy consumption reduced from2506 to 2486 million unit but saving has not been attributed anywhere in the record of Indian Railways that it is because of free distribution of CFLs.  //www.railelectrica.com/energy-conservation/energy-conservation-non-traction/
5 In the coming decade, besides big initiatives like the Dedicated Freight Corridors and the High Speed Passenger Train Corridors, which have the potential to reduce millions of tonnes of CO2 emissions per annum, the following additional  initiatives  are being envisaged
Vague Statement with any supporting document ever produced
6 Harnessing both existing tools (like CDM) and emerging tools like Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs) for transfer of technology as well as financing. 
 No action taken 
7 Saving up to 15% of energy through a improved energy efficiency in both traction (accounting for87% of energy consumed by Indian Railways) as well as non-traction use
For traction purpose, the talk is about the capability of regeneration. But there is no talk about the additional no load losses in WAG9 as compared to WAG7 locomotive that compensates the regeneration efficiency. Specific Energy consumption of the two class of locomotive may not differ much.                    //www.railelectrica.com/energy-conservation/energy-conservation-traction/
8 Introduction of new design of locomotive and rolling stock that use less energy and less material
No action
9 Energy Audit to improve energy efficiency on thousands of its stations and offices and adoption of LED lighting and Energy Conservation Building Code .
No actionEnergy efficiency of LED lighting is conditional
10 Sourcing at least 10% of energy used from renewable sources such as solar power and biomass. 
Indian Railway consumes 3000 million units of energy therefore 300 million units shall from renewable source of energy. There is no evidence in support of this.
11 Procurement of only 3-star or higher-rated products for  achieving energy efficiency
Star rating importance depends on the usage of the appliance. Working hours of the appliance shall be worked out and then only the star rating be decided. 
12 Railways will also  undertake massive plantation drive along the Railway tracks, in railway colonies and using grass turfing as a protective anti-erosion measure on the slopes of the banks
A very novel ideal but with no implementation plan.


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