New Delhi: State-run oil and gas majors — Indian Oil, Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL), Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL), GAIL (India) Ltd and Indraprastha Gas Ltd (IGL) — have signed a cooperation agreement on Tuesday to develop a strong marketing network for selling Compressed Bio-gas (CBG) under the SATAT (Sustainable Alternative Towards Affordable Transportation) scheme. The cooperation agreement provides for establishing a strong network for marketing the entire produced quantity of CBG Plants through various channels. The agreement also has provision for associate implementers to join the SATAT movement," said the Petroleum Ministry in an official statement.
As per the agreement, Indian Oil will act as the coordinator under the SATAT scheme and liaison with the government and other agencies on behalf of industry members. And state-run GAIL shall serve as the coordinator for the implementation of the CBG-CGD synchronisation scheme. Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan presided over the virtual ceremony in which a number of initiatives were launched to provide major fillip to the SATAT initiative.
The SATAT scheme aims to set up CBG production plants and make CBG available in the market for use as a green fuel. The scheme, launched on October 1, 2018, envisages to target production of 15 MMT of CBG from 5,000 plants by 2023. Besides the potential to boost availability of more affordable transport fuels, better use of agricultural residue, cattle dung and municipal solid waste, the 5,000 CBG plants will provide an investment of Rs 1.75 lakh crore, an additional revenue source to farmers, and 75,000 direct job opportunities and lakhs of indirect jobs.
During the event, the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas also signed MoUs with Essar Capital Limited, XEMX Projects, Knowledge Integration Services, and Global Green Growth Institute, Seoul to set up new CBG Plants across the country.
Pradhan also laid the foundation stones of five upcoming CBG Plants. These plants are being set up across Gujarat (2), Uttar Pradesh (2) and Punjab (1) by CNM Energy Solution Pvt Ltd, Carboneu Pvt Ltd, Cities Innovative Biofuels Private Limited and CEF Budhana Energy Private Ltd. The minister also dedicated to the nation the newly commissioned CBG plants of Solika Energy Pvt Ltd in Hyderabad and TR Mega Foods and Beverages LLP in Ludhiana. He also dedicated new CBG selling retail outlets at Hyderabad (Masab Tank Service Station), Bengaluru (Jai Bheem) and Ludhiana (Sharma Filling Station) to the nation.
During the landmark event, the Petroleum Minister also inaugurated the first injection of CBG into the CGD pipeline network at Govardhannathji Energies into Gujarat Gas CGD network at Nadiad Kheda district, Gujarat. This is in line with the recently issued policy guidelines by the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas on CBG injection in the CGD network.
A website to provide a digital boost to the SATAT programme was also unveiled during the event. The website www.satat.co.in shall be a resource centre for new and existing CBG Plants providing details on CBG & SATAT, enablers under the SATAT scheme and FAQs. The portal also contains a section on the learning modules where handy presentations and videos have been made accessible.
Speaking on the occasion, Pradhan said that the government is committed to harnessing the full potential of biofuels to realise Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of reducing import dependence and ensuring a sustainable energy future for the nation. He said that steps taken by India for containing the global warming as per the commitment made in COP-21 have been well appreciated. These included providing LPG connections to 8 crore people, surge in the Ethanol blending to almost 9 percent in the current Sugar year, progress in Bio-diesel programme, Aluminium Air battery.
Pradhan said that the CBG programme under the SATAT has gained momentum, but the growth has to be exponential, not incremental. He said that this requires oil and gas PSUs to play a more responsible role, debottleneck, set up of infrastructure, handhold small entrepreneurs, and convince big companies to set up mega-clusters for CBG. The minister said that India should play a global leadership role in energy conversion, as we convert agro-residues/municipal wastes and other green wastes into energy, and make farmers and rag-pickers important stakeholders in the process. He said that this will help in reducing oil imports, improving environment, saving foreign exchange, enriching the poor, and also brand building. The minister said that there is a large potential of harnessing usable Hydrogen from CBG in an economically-viable manner.
Speaking on occasion, Petroleum Secretary Tarun Kapoor said that the agreement among PSUs will inspire confidence among the entrepreneurs for setting up CBG plants, and remove doubts about the marketing responsibility of gas from these plants. He said that injection of CBG into the CGD pipeline network is an important milestone. He said that the government is in discussion with the state governments to sort out various issues concerning these plants, and also with the fertilizer department for the marketing of manure produced in these plants. Kapoor called for quick installation of SATAT plants.
Indian Oil Chairman Shrikant Madhav Vaidya, in his welcome address, said, "India is betting big on Biogas through the Government of India's Sustainable Alternative Towards Affordable Transportation (SATAT) initiative. The SATAT scheme aims to set up Compressed Bio-Gas production plants and make CBG available in the market for use as a green fuel. And, this landmark event is yet another milestone on our journey of implementing the SATAT scheme."