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NITI Aayog working on roadmap for full-scale methanol economy

To mitigate the environmental hazards coupled with some considerable financial benefits to the nation in terms of cutting down the import bill, NITI Aayog has framed a comprehensive plan for a full-scale methanol economy for India. 

The Concept of “Methanol Economy” is being actively pursued by China, Italy, Sweden, Israel, US, Australia, Japan and many other European countries. 10% of fuel in China in transport Sector is Methanol, said an official release. Bringing out the environmental advantages of using methanol, the statement added:  “Methanol burns efficiently in all internal combustion engines, produces no particulate matter, no soot, almost nil SOX and NOX emissions (NEAR ZERO POLLUTION).” 

"Adopting methanol in this scale would bring down pollution in the country by more than 40 per cent and not to forget the benefits from import substitution. Over a period of time, diesel can completely be done away with," it said. Another very significant advantage of methanol, the statement continued, the belched out C02 (greenhouse gas emission) both from using Methanol and while producing Methanol can be tapped back to produce Methanol...

NITI Aayog has drawn out a comprehensive plan to replace 20% of crude imports from Methanol alone. Adopting Methanol in this scale would bring down pollution in the country by more than 40% and not to forget the benefits from import substitution. Over a period of time of time diesel can completely be done away with. Indian Railways alone burns three billion litres of diesel every year. Plans are in place to convert 6000 diesel railway engines to work on 100% Methanol and make railways a carbon neutral organisation, the statement added.

In marine and energy sectors also, methanol can effect considerable reduction in pollution.  The new IMO regulations on emission control and sulphur cap will make methanol as a fuel of choice and the Indian government also is planning to make methanol as a fuel of choice for obvious emission benefits.

India by adopting Methanol, according to the official release, can have its own indigenous fuel at the cost of approximately Rs. 19 per litre at least 30% cheaper than any available fuel. Methanol fuel can result in great environmental benefits and can be the answer to the burning urban pollution issue. At least 20% diesel consumption can be reduced in next 5-7 years and will result in a savings of Rs. 26,000 crore annually. Rs. 6000 crore can be annually saved from reduced bill in LPG in the next 3 years itself. The Methanol blending program with petrol will further reduce our fuel bill by at least Rs. 5000 crore annually in next 3 years.

Methanol Economy, if adopted by India can be one of the best ways to mitigate the Environmental hazards of a growing economy. NITI Aayog is preparing a road map for a full-scale implementation in the near future.

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