Praj Industries’ demonstration plant that deploys innovative technology for the production of compressed biogas (CBG) was inaugurated Nov. 6 by Union Min. Shri Prakash Javadekar. Located in the Praj Matrix R&D campus, the plant deploys Praj’s technology which utilizes a proprietary microbial consortium made from feedstock such as agri residues and press mud. Also known as renewable natural gas or RNG, CBG forms part of Praj’s Bio-Mobility portfolio which uses captive biobased feedstock to produce carbon neutral transportation fuel carbon neutral transportation fuel across all modes of mobility.
India imports more than 80 percent fossil fuel, which is likely to increase to 90 percent in the near future. Transportation is the single largest user of fossil oil, and third largest GHG emitter. Further, with India committed to reduce its GHG emissions by 30-35 percent by 2030, it has become imperative to commercialize alternative indigenous energy sources derived from advanced biofuels technologies. Moreover, biofuels like CBG produced from agricultural crop waste is also an alternative to the burning of agri residue after harvesting.
Since last 20 years, Praj has executed more than 50 biogas plants; most of them operating on industrial waste streams. Its latest technology which has multi-feed flexibility is automated and offers several other benefits through its signature L-EPC (license – engineering procurement and construction) and O&M model. Additional advantages include round the year biogas production, best in class yields, more efficient degradation and gas upgradation, and low utility footprint. The plant will also co-produce high quality organic manure certified by Natural Organic Certification Agro (NOCA).
Complimenting this initiative, Shri. Javadekar, Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change; Minister of Information and Broadcasting; and Minister of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, said, “I am pleased to inaugurate this innovative and indigenous technology that helps secure a cleaner and greener world. Praj’s CBG technology is one of the most sustainable solutions to combat the impact of air pollution on health and environment because of stubble burning. The conversion of agri residue and biomass to biofuel is also in keeping with the government’s goals towards Atma Nirbhar Bharat.”
Speaking on the occasion, Pramod Chaudhari, executive chairman, Praj Industries, said, “The CBG demo plant is another step closer to reducing carbon emissions and pollution. Besides reducing the import of natural gas and crude oil, our technology will boost entrepreneurship, economy and employment in rural India. This project is aligned with our endeavors towards energy self-reliance and supports the national commitment in achieving climate change targets”.
Biofuels, a renewable transportation fuels in gaseous and liquid form complements fossil fuel sources. Govt of India launched the National Biofuels Policy 2018 and Sustainable Alternative Towards Affordable Transportation (SATAT) initiative to promote Compressed Biogas (CBG) as an alternative, green transport fuel. Under this initiative, 5,000 CBG plants are expected to be rolled out across India in a phased manner. They are expected to produce 15 million metric tons of CBG per annum, which is about 40 percent of current CNG consumption of 44 million metric tons per annum in the country, generating direct employment for 75,000 people and producing 50 million metric tons of bio-manure.