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ONGC to undertake India’s maiden geothermal field development project in Ladakh

ONGC will implement India’s maiden geothermal field development project in Ladakh and has signed an MoU in this regard

ONGC to undertake India’s maiden geothermal field development project in Ladakh
ONGC to undertake India’s maiden geothermal field development project in Ladakh
  • This project of ONGC will put India on geothermal power map of the world

  • Geothermal resource development can revolutionise farming in Ladakh, which is now totally dependent for supply of fresh vegetables, fruits from outside the UT round the year

New Delhi: Maharatna oil PSU Oil & Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) will implement India’s maiden geothermal field development project in Ladakh. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to formalise this has been inked by ONGC Energy Centre (OEC) with the Union Territory of Ladakh and Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council, Leh on February 6, said ONGC in an official statement on Monday. This MoU, which was signed in the presence of Ladakh Lieutenant Governor, is the first step towards creating a Carbon Neutral Ladakh, a clarion call given by Prime Minister of India on Independence Day 2020, the statement added.

“This project of ONGC will put India on Geothermal Power map of the world. Geothermal resource development can revolutionise farming in Ladakh, which is now totally dependent for supply of fresh vegetables, fruits from outside the UT round the year. Further, direct heat energy applications make it most relevant to Ladakh,” it added.

Geothermal Field Development Project to be executed in 3 phases: GRSE

ONGC has planned this field development in Ladakh in three phases. Phase-I involves exploratory-cum-production drilling of wells up to 500 metres depth and setting up of a pilot plant of up to 1 MW power capacity. Phase-II would involve deeper and lateral exploration of geothermal reservoir by drilling of optimal number of wells and setting up of a higher capacity demo plant and preparing a detailed project report. Phase-III would involve commercial development of the geothermal plant. 

ALSO READ: ONGC has cut its carbon emission intensity by over 12% in last 5 years: CMD

Puga and Chumathang in eastern Ladakh happen to be the most promising geothermal fields in India. These areas were discovered in 1970s and initial exploratory efforts were made in 1980s by the Geological Survey of India (GSI). But development efforts to exploit geothermal energy by government as well as private agencies did not materialise for some reasons. After creation of UT Ladakh, efforts were taken up earnestly by ONGC Energy Centre, culminating in this MoU, the statement said.

Geothermal energy

Geothermal energy is an energy source that is stored in the form of heat beneath the earth’s surface, which is clean, renewable, sustainable, carbon free, continuous, uninterrupted and environment-friendly. It is the only renewable energy available 24x7 to the mankind not requiring storage and unaffected by day-night or seasonality variance. India has seven geothermal provinces and a number of geothermal springs. Geothermal resources in India have been mapped by the Geological Survey of India (GSI) and broad estimate suggests that there could be 10 GW geothermal power potential as per Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE).

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