Coal rich India, US, China needn't depend on oil for energyCoal rich India, US, China needn't depend on oil for energy
India, China and the United States are among very few countries in the world which can easily attain energy independence by substituting synthetic fuel obtained from petroleum with coal, an expert has said. India, the US and China are rich in coal deposits and can easily attain energy independence by producing synthetic fuel or Synfuel from coal, Governor of Montana and soil scientist Brian Schweitzer said. The former soil scientist said the high-performing fuel would cost only $35 a barrel. The Synfuel process, which is nothing like conventional coal use, removes greenhouse gases as well as toxins like sulfur, mercury and arsenic. A Synfuel plant can generate electric power, make synthetic natural gas, and produce hydrogen that many, including President George W Bush, believe is the energy source of the future. Schweitzer also says, "Most people are surprised to learn that we can produce gasoline, diesel, jet fuel and other petroleum products out of coal. Indeed, the process was used in America as early as 1928. In World War II, 92 per cent of Germany's aviation fuel and half its total petroleum came from synthetic fuel plants. South Africa has used a similar technology for 50 years, and now makes 200,000 barrels per day of synthetic gasoline and diesel, he said.
India woos West for nuclear energy
The US Congress may still be undecided on whether to ratify the recent India-US agreement between President George W Bush and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for enabling transfer of nuclear technology and fuel to India, but Delhi seems to be already moving ahead to entice foreign investors to invest in the country's ambitious nuclear-power plans. The Indian government is working on a policy to allow foreign direct investment (FDI) in the country's nuclear-power sector, which if finalized, would be a new area for FDI. As with the much-debated retail sector, nuclear power too is currently out of bounds for foreign investors. In a controversial policy shift, the US president entered into an agreement on July 18 with the Indian prime minister, which, subject to congressional approval, promised to change US laws so that nuclear-armed India gets from US - and willing other countries - help and cooperation for developing its civilian nuclear-power program.