Pushing the Indian government's efforts towards cleaner automobile emissions, Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, along with state-owned marketing companies- IndianOil, Bharat Petroleum and Hindustan Petroleum, launched a programme to procure biodiesel made from used cooking oil in 100 cities across the country.
The three OMCs would be inviting expression of interest from private entities for setting up plants to produce biodiesel from used cooking oil. OMCs will initially procure the biodiesel at an assured rate of 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.
Pradhan also launched Repurpose Used Cooking Oil (RUCO) sticker and a mobile phone application for collection of used cooking oil to ensure that it does not come back to ecosystem. The sticker would affixed by the food joints, hotels and restaurants in their premises to identify that they supply used cooking oil for producing biodiesel.
Addressing an event to mark 'World Biofuel Day' here, Pradhan said, "Biodiesel is available in many forms other than used cooking oil. It is waste to wealth. We will celebrate World Biofuel Day as alternative energy day."
"Like Amul, where milk is collected from households and then converted into a commercial product, there will be RUCO movement. The biggest issue (with biofuels like compressed bio gas) was offtake guarantee. More than 300 firms have got letter of intent for compressed bio gas. Its implementation is a challenge. But we are targetting 5,000 such units till 2024," he added.
At present, India consumes 850 crore litres of diesel every month. With the government's target to blend 5 percent of biodiesel in diesel by 2030, 500 crore litres of biodiesel will be required in a year.
India uses 2,700 crore litres of cooking oil, out of which 140 crore used cooking oil can be collected from bulk consumers like hotels, restaurants and canteens for conversion, which will produce around 110 crore litres of biodiesel every year.
At present, there is no established chain of collection for used cooking oil.