Important Source of Energy


Coal is the most important source of energy in India. Other sources of energy in India being scarce, coal will continue to remain a major source of energy. It is also used as a raw material in a large number of industries. The coal bearing strata of India are geologically classified into two main categories viz. the Gondwana coal fields and the Tertiary coal.

Gondwana Coal

The lower Gondwana coal contributes overwhelmingly large proportion of both reserves and production of coal, accounting for 98 per cent of the reserves and 99 per cent of the total coal production of India. These coal deposits are said to be about 200 millions years old. Out of 113 known coal fields, 80 belong to the lower Gondwana system. The Gondwana coal fields are found in four river valleys: (i) Damodar valley (Jharkhand and West Bengal); (ii) Sone valley (Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Uttar Pradesh); (iii)Mahanadi valley (Chhattisgarh and Odisha); and (iv) Wardha-Godavari valley (Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Telangana).

Statewise distribution of Gondwana coal is as follows:

  • Chhattisgarh: Majority of the coal fields are located in the northern part of this state. Here Chirimiri-Kurasia. Bisrampur, Jhilmil, Sonhat, Lakhanpur, Sendurgarh, Tathpani-Ramkota are the main coal fields. South Chattisgarh has Hasdo-Arand, Korba, Mand-Raigarh as the main coal fields.
  • Jharkhand: Jharia, Bokaro, Giridih, Karanpura, Ramgarh, Daltonganj, Aurangabad and Hutar. Part of the Raniganj coalld of West Bengal falls in this state.
  • Odisha: Telchar and Rampur
  • Madhya Pradesh: Singrauli, Suhagpur, Johilla, Umaria, Pench-Kanhan, Pathkhera and Mohpani
  • Maharashtra: Chanda-Wardha, Kamptee and Bander
  • Telangana: Adilabad, Karimnagar, Khamman
  • Andhra Pradesh: Warangal, East Godavari, West Godavari
  • West Bengal: Raniganj, Darjeeling and Jalpaiguri

Tertiary Coal

Is extracted from Darangiri, Cherrapunji, Laitryngew, Mawlong and Langrin in Meghalaya; Makum, Jaipur and Nazira in upper Assam; Namchik-Namphuk area in Arunachal Pradesh and Kalakot in Jammu and Kashmir.


Most of the lignite reserves are found in Neyveli of Tamil Nadu. Neyveli Lignite Corporation Limited exploits lignite reserves at Neyveli. Reserves of lignite are also found in Rajasthan, Gujarat and Jammu and Kashmir.


Following four regions of India have petroleum reserves and are producing petroleum in varying quantities

1. North-Eastern Region

Digboi (oldest in India), Naharkatiya, Moran, Rudrasagar, Galeki and Hugrijan. In Tirap district of Arunachal Pradesh, there is Nigru oil fields. In the nearby Nagaland, oil fields are at Borholla, close to Nagaland-Assam border.

2. Gujarat Region

Ankleshwar, Kalol, Nawagam, Kosamba, Kathana, Barkol, Mehsana, Sanand and Lunej. Oil has also been found on the Aliabet island situated 45 km west of Bhavnagar in Saurashtra.

3. Mumbai High

Mumbai High is an oil bearing region about 160 km north-west of the Mumbai coast. A drilling platform known as ‘Sagar Samrat’ was set up here in 1975. It is a sort of ship which is capable of o-shore drilling for oil. Bassain is in south of Mumbai High.

4. East Coastal Region

This region extends over the Krishna-Godavari and Kaveri basin. Recent explorations have indicated the presence of vast oil reserves in the Krishna-Godavari basin of Andhra Pradesh. Oil reserves have also been discovered in Jaisalmer district of Rajasthan.

Oil Refining


The present refining capacity in the country as on 1st June 2011 was 193.386 Million Metric Tonnes Per Annum (MMTPA). Out of 21 refineries operating in the country 17 are in public sector, 3 are in private sector and 1 is in JV (Joint Venture) of Public Sector. Out of 17 Public Sector refineries, 8 are owned by Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. (IOCL), 2 each by Chennai Petroleum Corporation Limited (a subsidiary of IOCL), Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL), Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) and Oil & Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC).

Numaligarh Refinery Limited (a subsidiary of BPCL) and Mangalore Refinery, and Petrochemicals limited have one each. The joint venture refinery belongs to Bharat Petroleum corportation limits. Capacity wise details of the refineries are given below.

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