Stone laid for country’s 1st 2G Ethanol Bio-Refinery in Odisha

Bargarh: A second generation (2G) Ethanol Bio-Refinery, first of its kind in the country, will come up in Odisha as the foundation stone for the plant was laid by Odisha Governor Ganeshi Lal at Baulasingha village near Bhatli in Bargarh district today.

Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of Handloom and Textiles of State Snehangini Chhuria, Rajya Sabha member Prasanna Acharya, Minister Prafulla Mallick, Bargarh MLA Prabhas Singh were present during stone laying ceremony.

Oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan said the plant is a Nuakhai gift of PM Narendra Modi for People of Odisha.

“The Ethanol Bio-refinery at Bargarh is Hon. PM Sh. @narendramodi ji’s ‘Nuakhai’ gift for people of Odisha. It’s unique ‘waste-to-wealth’ model will help in reducing pollution, usher prosperity for farmers by providing them with additional income & increasing employment in Odisha,” Pradhan tweeted.

“Initiatives under the leadership of PM Modi has helped us achieve 141Cr-ltrs of ethanol blending in 2017-2018 against a mere 38Cr-ltrs in 2013-2014. An almost four fold jump that helped save around ₹3750Cr of forex reserves & helped achieve more than 3.5% ethanol blending,” Pradhan tweeted.

He further stated that the newly introduced National Biofuel Policy-2018 has further expanded the criteria of raw materials which can be utilized for producing Bio-ethanol. This will greatly help in boosting production of ethanol towards our target to achieve 10% blending by supply year 2018-19.

The Bio-refinery, the first of its kind to be set up, will have a capacity to produce three crore litres of fuel grade Ethanol annually using Rice straw as the feedstock. Ethanol produced from this plant will be blended with Petrol. The Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) will set up the plant at an estimated cost of Rs 1,000 crore.

Biofuels have assumed importance recently due to the growing energy security needs and environmental concerns. Several countries have put forth different mechanism and incentives to encourage production and use of bio-fuels to suit their domestic requirements. Indi has surplus biomass availability of about 120-160 MMT annually which if converted, has the potential to yield 3000 crore litres of ethanol.

The National Biofuel Policy of India 2018 targets 20% Ethanol blending to Petrol by year 2030. However, due to non-availability of Ethanol, the current Ethanol blending in Petrol is about 3 to 4%. Setting up of 2G Ethanol plants will help achieve the target of Ethanol blending in Petrol. The Bargarh Bio-Refinery will utilize about two lakh tonnes of Rice straw annually as feedstock which will be sourced from nearby locations like Bhati, Ambabhona, Sohela, Burla, Lakhanpur.

The Bio-Refineries will contribute to cleaner environment due to usage of waste Rice straw for Ethanol production thereby reducing waste straw burning in fields. Blending of Ethanol in Petrol will reduce Green House Gas emissions as compared to fossil fuels.

The plant is based on Zero-liquid discharge plant technology where all water will be recycled back into the plant. In addition to cleaner environment, the project will also help improve the socio-economic conditions of the farmers due to additional income from sale of Rice straw to the bio-refinery.

Also, this will generate employment for about 1200 persons (both direct and indirect) during construction, operation of plant and supply chain management of biomass. This will boost the infrastructural development in the area and overall improvement in livelihood of people. Further, blending of ethanol enhances self-sufficiency of the Nation by reducing oil imports, thereby saving foreign exchange.

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