(EnergyAsia, September 30) — India’s largest oil producer, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), is planning to venture into biofuels production at two of its proposed refineries.

Chairman Subir Raha said he plans to include biofuels production units at its proposed oil refineries in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan. He said he will discuss the biofuels project with the Rajasthan state government.


He told the Business Standard: “With the growing worldwide interest in biofuels, we are planning to initiate biofuel processing at all our upcoming refineries. While the Andhra Pradesh government has agreed to support us in this venture, we will be discussing the same with the Rajasthan government shortly.


“So far, the Rajasthan government has been supportive and we expect the extension of this support to the biofuels idea as well,” he added.

           

According to the newspaper, ONGC has received the government approval for building a 7.5-million tonne refinery at Barmer district in Rajasthan through a joint venture between its subsidiary Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Limited (MRPL) and UK’s Cairn Energy.

           

ONGC plans to build an export-oriented refinery at Kakinada in Andhra Pradesh. The Rs55 billion plant will have a capacity of 5.5 million tonnes to 7.5 million tonnes a year. (US$1=Rs45).

           

“We have decided to integrate the biofuels unit from the design stage. The Andhra Pradesh government has agreed to support us in this venture wherein extracts from jatropha and sweet sorghum would be used to produce ethanol to blend in the fuels,” said Mr Raha.