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Viable and environment-friendly sources for meeting South Asia's growing energy needs

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Publication Date: January 2007

Publisher(s): East-West Center

Author(s): Toufiq A. Siddiqi

Series: AsiaPacific issues ; no. 83

Topic: Energy (Energy policy)

Type: Report


South Asia's rapidly accelerating economic growth is accompanied by energy requirements that are increasing at a similar pace. The development of cleaner sources of electricity, such as hydropower; the establishment of reliable sources and transport of natural gas; and the linking of electrical systems within the region would help to ensure the continued supply of energy needed to fuel South Asia's expanding economy. Currently, most of South Asia's commercial energy demand is supplied by coal and oil. While the use of these fuels will continue, there is a need to reduce the rate at which coal and oil consumption is increasing and to expand the use of other energy sources that are environment-friendly, readily available, and reasonably priced. Much of the increasing demand can be met by natural gas and hydroelectricity, and while the necessary electricity can potentially be produced within the region, natural gas will need to come from both within South Asia and from neighboring countries. Regional cooperation among the countries of South Asia as well as with surrounding countries is essential for meeting the region's future energy needs.