India has set a deadline of 2035 to establish green hydrogen bunkering and refuelling facilities at major ports in the drive to cut its carbon footprint, the shipping ministry said in guidelines issued on Wednesday.
One of the world's biggest emitters of greenhouse gases, India aims to cut emissions to net zero by 2070, and the shipping minister said three of its ports would initially have bunker facilities for green hydrogen and ammonia.
"Our target is to cover all 12 major parts with a green hydrogen bunkering facility by 2035," Shipping Minister Sarbananda Sonowal told Reuters.
The initial ports in the effort are to be Paradip in the east, Kandla in the west, and Tuticorin in the south.
"Financing required to turn these ports into green ports is under consideration," Sonowal added.
More than 200 ports dot India's coastline, which stretches 7,500 km (4,660 miles), in addition to the 12 major ones, all together accounting for 95% of its trade by volume and 65% by value.
Authorities want electricity to power at least half the vehicle and equipment needs of major ports by 2030, rather than diesel, and raise that figure further to 90% by 2047.
"Whatever initiative we are taking aims to meet the 2070 goal of being a net-zero carbon nation," Sonowal said.
To meet the net-zero goal, at least 40% of India's electricity will have to come from renewables.
To that end, the new shipping guidelines require ports to satisfy at least 60% of electricity needs through renewables by 2030 and 90% by 2047.
Also, by 2030, all ports must achieve cuts of more than a fifth in energy consumption on each tonne of cargo versus 2023, the guidelines show.
To boost use of gas, the shipping ministry wants ports to set up at least one liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunkering station by 2030 and electric vehicle charging stations in and around port areas by 2025.
(Reuters - Reporting by Nidhi Verma; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)