To reduce India's dependence on energy imports, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, along with the state-run fuel retailers (IOC, HPCL and BPCL), launched a programme to procure biodiesel made from used cooking oil (UCO) from 100 cities across the country. This will also help India meet its fuel demand in the near future.
On the Occasion of the World Biofuel Day today, Dharmendra Pradhan, Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister, launched the programme that involves 3 Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) inviting Expression for Interest (EOI) from private entities for setting up plants to produce biodiesel from used cooking oil, processing plants and further utilising the existing potential of UCO-based biodiesel in India.
This could encourage private entrepreneurs to set up Biodiesel plants and get remunerative price and assurance on complete offtake of production.
As part of EOI, biodiesel would be procured by the OMCs at Rs 51 per litre, which would be increased to Rs 52.7 in the second year and Rs 54.5 per litre in the third year. Moreover, the oil companies will also bear the cost of transportation and GST for the first year.
"PM Modi has given a target to the ministry to bring down import dependency of oil products by 2022, and this can be achieved by enhancing production, improving energy efficiency, promoting conservation and encouraging alternate fuels", said Dharmendra Pradhan, adding the abundance of the raw material could turn this from 'good waste to wealth concept'.
Moreover, a sticker on Repurpose Used Cooking Oil (RUCO) was released by Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). The food joints, hotels and restaurants supplying UCO for producing biodiesel will affix this sticker on their premises.
Additionally, a mobile app, RUCO App, was also launched, which will enable stakeholders track all transactions and facilitate the UCO collection.
"Presently there is no established collection chain for UCO. Thus, there is a huge opportunity in the production of biodiesel from UCO," the Ministry of Oil and Natural Gas stated.
Pradhan said the government was promoting alternate sources of energy in a big way, and added that the Centre was working on a four-pronged strategy to promote ethanol, 2-G ethanol, compressed bio-gas and bio-diesel.
"The budget this year has underlined the transformation of Annadata to Urjadata," Pradhan added.