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Centre to take up with States for accelerated use of Biomass Pellets by State GENCOS and IPPs

Published: Mar 25, 2023

By TIOLCorplaws News Service

NEW DELHI, MAR 25, 2023: THE Ministry of Power organized a National Conference on Biomass "3P-Pellet to Power to Prosperity" in New Delhi today under the aegis of National Mission on Use of Biomass in Thermal Power Plants (SAMARTH) and National Power Training Institute (NPTI). The conference was aimed at fostering an enabling environment to boost co-firing of biomass pellets in Thermal Power Plants in India as well as to provide a common platform for all the stakeholders in the field to share their knowledge and experience, to strengthen the biomass supply ecosystem.

Krishan Pal Gurjar, Hon'ble Minister of State for Power & Heavy Industries inaugurated the Conference along with Alok Kumar Secretary (Power), Ghanshyam Prasad Chairman CEA,  M.M. Kutty, Chairman CAQM, Gurdeep Singh CMD NTPC, Sudip Nag (Mission Director SAMARTH) and senior Government officials.

Speaking on the occasion Gurjar said that the Conference was a great initiative to bring all the stakeholders on a common platform and will benefit everyone from farmer to pellet manufacturers to Thermal Power Plants besides helping in reduction of pollution especially in the NCR region caused by stubble burning during the winter season. He added the Biomass Co-firing Policy is an important step towards reducing emissions from the power sector. "India had already achieved the non-fossil based generation capacity targets of COP'21, 9 years ahead of the 2030 deadline. Hon'ble Prime Minister has committed to cut India's emissions to net zero by 2070 at the COP'26. India is taking a number of steps for promoting Green Energy," the Minister of State for Power said. He added that the government was making serious efforts to promote the biomass pellet manufacturing sector. So far about 1 Lakh MT of biomass has been co-fired more than 41 Thermal Power Stations, which is expected to increase further, Gurjar added.

Alok Kumar, Secretary, Ministry of Power appreciated the work done by the National Mission on Use of Biomass in Thermal Power Plants (SAMARTH). He said that a lot of work needed to be done as the competing fuels had a long history of growth and a well established strong supply chain. He urged the State Regulatory Bodies, State Generation Companies and IPPs to promote the use of Biomass Pellets saying that despite multiple advantages, there was an inertia on part of these bodies to push for greater use of biomass pellets. Alok Kumar added that the Ministry will soon write to State Regulatory Bodies in this regard. The Power Secretary also emphasized upon the need to ensure an intermediary agency as a bridge for efficient supply-demand linkages between pellet supplier/manufactures and Thermal Power Stations, which are Biomass Pellet users.

The conference was attended by near 300 persons drawn from Ministries, Regulatory bodies, Financial Institutions, Thermal Power Plants, Pellet manufacturers, Entrepreneurs, OEMs, IITs, Agriculture universities, FPOs, CBBOs, Farmer organizations etc.

The conversion of Biomass agro residue into pellets and co-firing them in Thermal Power Plants is expected to not only save the environment from harmful effects of stubble burning but also contribute towards the reduction of country's dependence on imported coal in electricity generation, and increase the earning potential of farmers and small entrepreneurs.