• Railways have undertaken some major initiatives to Go Green.
• This information was given by the Minister of State of Railways, Shri Rajen Gohain in a written reply to a question in Lok Sabha today.
• The details of the areas/activities identified and their present status are as under:
• Ministry of Railways has planned to set up 1000 Mega Watt (MW) solar power by 2020-21 which would help Railways to source about 10% of its electrical energy from renewable source. Indian Railways have already installed about 71.19 MW of Solar plants over rooftops at Railways stations and service buildings.
• Wind energy plants of 36.5 MW have been installed out of which, 26 MW at Jaisalmer was installed in 2015-2016.
• Use of LED lights on electrified railway stations and service buildings. All electrified Railway stations (except those under gauge conversion) and 99% of service buildings have been fitted with 100% LED luminaries over Indian Railways.
• Blending of 5% bio-diesel in High Speed Diesel (HSD) for diesel locomotives was started in June, 2015.
• 20% Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) substitution in diesel engines of 23 Diesel Power Cars of Diesel Electric Multiple Unit (DEMU) trains and introduction of Solar energy based DEMUs.
• Tree plantation to increase green cover in Railway Premises. Track side boundary plantation also started in 2016. On Indian Railways, 1.25 crores saplings were planted during 2016-17, 88.96 lakh in 2017-18 and 97.33 lakh during 2018-19 upto November, 2018.
• Towards better Water Management, Water Audits at major consumption centres as well as proliferation of Water Recycling Plants and Rain Water Harvesting (RWH) Systems are undertaken. Water Policy of Indian Railways was issued in March, 2017.
• Assessment and rating of Indian Railway’s Production Units and major Workshops as Green Industrial Units started with ‘GreenCo’ certification of 2 Workshops and 1 Production unit in 2016-17. 31 more Workshops, 4 more Production Units, 2 Diesel Sheds, one Stores depot and 2 Supervisors Training Centres have been ‘GreenCo’ certified since then. Eight Railway Stations, two Railway Schools and one Railway Hospital have also achieved Green Certification.
• Pace of installation of environment-friendly bio-toilets in passenger coaches has been increased. Nearly 163,000 bio-toilets have been installed in around 44,500 coaches, out of which more than 127,000 bio-toilets were installed in around 33,500 coaches since April, 2016.
• Pace of electrification has been increased. As on 1st April, 2018, 30,212 Route Kilometers (RKM) of Indian Railways are electrified out of which 5,733 RKM was done in two years 2016-17 and 2017-18. Electrification work is in progress on 33,658 Route Kilometers.
• In 2016, a policy decision was taken for allocating 1% cost in all sanctioned works for execution of environment-related works.
Mains Paper 2: Governance | Mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.
Prelims level: Go Green Initiatives
Mains level: Read the newscard