Dharmendra Pradhan - Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Steel has set off the very first supply of Used Cooking Oil (UCO) based Biodiesel blended Diesel under the EOI Scheme from IndianOil's Tikrikalan Terminal. The program was inaugurated in the presence of Secretary- Ministry of Petroleum & Natural GasTarun Kapoor and Chairman, Indian Oil S M Vaidya.
The initiative has been taken to form an eco-system for collection and conversion of UCO into Biodiesel and developing entrepreneurship opportunities.
Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Steel, along with Minister of Health& Family Welfare, Science & Technology and Earth Sciences, had introduced Expressions of Interest (EoIs) for "Procurement of Bio-diesel produced from Used Cooking Oil (UCO)" on the occasion of World Biofuel Day on 10th August 2019.
Such "Expression of Interest" is being periodically
released by Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) also. 11 EoIs were launched out between August 10, 2019 and November 09, 2020 across 200 locations. Publication of EoIs has been extended for one more year, till December 31, 2021 for 300 locations across the country.
Mentioning to the announcement, Pradhan said, "This is a landmark in India's pursuance of Biofuels and will have a positive impact on the environment. This initiative will garner substantial economic benefits for the nation by shoring up indigenous Biodiesel supply, reducing import dependence, and generating rural employment".
Under the initiative, OMCs proposal periodically incremental price guarantees for five years and outspread off-take guarantees for ten years to prospective entrepreneurs. Indian Oil has also issued 23 EOIs for Biodiesel plants with a total capacity of 22.95 crore litres.
Furthermore, it has received 51 kl of UCO-Biodiesel at its Tikrikalan terminal in Delhi as of 31.3.2021. Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas Secretary Tarun Kapoor stated, "With this flag off, a new era of Bioenergy has been ushered in that will revolutionize the Indian petroleum sector.
Feedstock availability in Biodiesel is a challenge, and leveraging UCO can be a major breakthrough that will enable us to reach the target of 5% Biodiesel blending. It will also help divert the unhealthy used oil from the food chain to a more productive purpose."
Biodiesel is an alternative fuel parallel to fossil procured diesel and it could be produced from vegetable oil, animal fats, tallow and waste cooking oil. A significant benefit of Biodiesel is its carbon-neutrality which means the oilseed absorbs the same amount of CO2 as is released with the use of the fuel in a vehicle. Similarly, Biodiesel is rapidly biodegradable and completely non-toxic.