August 09, 2017 06:15 GMT by abcnews.com

India's wild energy trends raise doubts over coal's future

India's wild energy trends raise doubts over coal's future

India's wild energy trends raise doubts over coal's future

Within the wild energy market of the world's second-most populous nation, predictions are proving tricky.

India had been projected to become a carbon-belching behemoth, fueled by thermal power plants demanding ever more coal for decades to come.

Now, some analysts are saying that may not happen.

In the last two years, coal consumption has slowed to its lowest level in two decades, even with the economy growing at a steamy 7 percent annual pace.

India is the world's third-largest carbon emitter and relies on coal-fired power plants. Its energy needs were forecast to soar, potentially escalating its emissions of climate-warming carbon.

Analysts say coal's peak is coming earlier than forecast because the industry's efforts on efficiency and renewable energy are taking hold.

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