Indian Biogas Association Calls For Rs 30,000 Crore Investment To Reduce LNG Imports

(MENAFN- KNN India) New Delhi, Feb 12 (KNN) The Indian Biogas Association has proposed a significant investment of Rs 30,000 crore to procure machinery and equipment necessary for biomass supply to compressed biogas plants, aiming to slash LNG imports by 12 MMTA (Million Metric Tons Annually).

Gaurav Kedia, Chairman of the Indian Biogas Association, emphasised the importance of utilising agricultural residues like paddy straw for bioenergy production and soil enrichment instead of burning them, citing dual benefits of renewable energy sources and improved soil health.

However, Kedia highlighted obstacles to procurement, including unattractive economics for farmers, who often opt to burn straw rather than selling it promptly due to the associated expenses with collection, storage, and transportation.

To address these challenges, Kedia stressed the need for government intervention, suggesting subsidies for equipment like combine harvesters and support for balers and storage units to facilitate efficient transportation and storage of biomass.

Furthermore, Kedia proposed the release of operational guidelines for crop residue management, establishment of custom hiring centres, creation of a supply chain for crop residue/paddy straw, and promotion of awareness on crop residue management.

According to the ASCI assessment, India generates 230 million tonnes of surplus agricultural residue, most of which is burnt due to inadequate collection equipment and motivation among farmers.

The government's initial focus should be on states with the highest biomass generation, such as Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, and Andhra Pradesh, where machinery and equipment worth over Rs 30,000 crore are required to address the issue.

This investment would ensure a steady substrate supply for CBG plants, attracting an additional investment of Rs 170 thousand crore and reducing LNG imports by 12 MMTA, significantly contributing to the country's green energy goals.

Kedia also emphasised the need for long-term financing options, incentives to increase domestic production of essential components, and support for schemes like Market Development Assistance for Fermented Organic Manure (FOM) from biogas plants.

In alignment with the Panchamrit initiative's objectives, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced financial assistance to support the transition towards energy security and environmental sustainability, emphasising the importance of reducing carbon emissions and achieving net-zero by 2070.

(KNN Bureau)


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