The progress of setting up the plant is being monitored by the Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) in NCR and Adjoining Areas.
Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL), a Central Government PSU, is setting up a Second Generation (2G) bio-refinery plant at Bathinda, Punjab. The 2G bio-refinery is designed for utilisation of paddy straw for production of ethanol for blending with petrol under the Ethanol Blending Program of the Central Government.
They are reportedly setting up the refinery for more than ₹1,400 crore. The progress of setting up the plant is being monitored by the Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) in NCR and Adjoining Areas. The designed production capacity of this 2G ethanol plant is reported to be 100 Kilo Litre (KL) Ethanol/ day. For this purpose, 570 MT of paddy straw will be utilized per day. This is expected to amount to (2,00,000 MT annually), when the plant operates at its full capacity. Approximately 1 Lakh MT biomass will be procured in this season for use as feedstock for the upcoming 2G ethanol plant which is expected to be commissioned by this year end.
The plant has already commenced procurement of biomass and procurement and it’s expected to accelerate it in the next few days. HPCL has been coordinating with the State Government of Punjab, District Administration and Punjab Energy Development Agency (PEDA) to streamline and resolve issues relating to procurement. Agreements have been established with Self Help Groups (SHGs) of Bathinda and nearby areas for paddy straw procurement. More than 23,000 MT of paddy straw has already been aggregated.
This plant will reduce the instances of paddy straw burning in Punjab, especially in Bathinda District, significantly this year as well as in the years to come. The impact is already visible, as for the period 15th September to 01st November this year, total paddy stubble burning cases in Bathinda have come down to 294 as against 880 in 2022.