On May 31, 2005, then-U.S. Secretary of Energy, Dr. Samuel W. Bodman and Dr. Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Deputy Chairman Planning Commission of India, launched a new Energy Dialogue. The Energy Dialogue builds upon the broad range of existing energy cooperation between India and the United States, as well as develops new avenues of collaboration. The Energy Dialogue includes working groups in the areas of coal, oil and gas, nuclear and renewable resources, electric power generation and energy efficiency.
The Coal Working Group is chaired by the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Fossil Energy, and India's Ministry of Coal. The objective of the CWG is to:
- Enhance the understanding of coal-related energy issues and promote the exchange of information on policies, programs and technologies with special emphasis on coal utilization for power generation and clean fuels production;
- Promote the efficient and environmentally responsible use of coal;
- Promote increased trade and investment in the coal and coal power sectors;
- Encourage India's active participation in the Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum, and Methane to Markets Partnership;
- Work with the private sector to identify areas of cooperation and collaborate with the business community on joint activities.
Since its inception, the Coal Working Group has had several meetings. Meeting summaries are available, along with copies of the technical presentations that address a number of topics, including: coal beneficiation; waste coal utilization; coal mine safety; coal mine methane; overburden dump stability; steep seem coal extraction; underground coal gasification and coal liquefaction. In addition, the CWG has developed a high level work plan that identifies the priority items of interest that will be pursued by the group.