An MoU was signed today for a waste to energy plant at Okhla, Delhi, between Indian Oil, NTPC Ltd and South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC). The ceremony was witnessed by the Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Steel Dharmendra Pradhan, Raj Kumar Singh, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Power and New & Renewable Energy and Anil Baijal, Lt. Governor of Delhi.
Under the MoU, Indian Oil, SDMC and NTPC shall come together to develop a demonstration waste-to-energy plant at Okhla landfill site in Delhi using gasification technology. This plant shall process 17,500 tonnes per annum of refuse-derived fuel (RDF) produced from combustible components of municipal waste to generate syngas, which shall in turn be used to generate electricity.
Speaking on the occasion, Pradhan said that management of municipal solid waste (MSW) was a major issue in Delhi and the upcoming plant would provide a solution. He congratulated Indian Oil, SDMC and NTPC for coming together for this landmark project that had the potential to carve out greener and more energy-efficient future for the Atmanirbhar Bharat or self-reliant India as envisioned by Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi.
Pradhan said that there was an existing model of providing offtake guarantee, under the Sustainable Alternative Towards Affordable Transportation (SATAT) scheme for compressed biogas production plants. He said that the venture would succeed as there were guarantees from two Maharatna companies. He called for quick expansion and replication of such a pilot project in other places as well. The minister said that gas generation from waste would also help in reducing imports of petroleum products. Pradhan asked Indian Oil Corp. Ltd (IOCL) and NTPC to join hands with the Department of Science and Technology to develop hydrogen fuel technology.
Singh said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi always spoke about breaking silos and this was a good example of two ministries coming together for a good cause. The problem of solid municipal waste was rampant throughout the country, more so in Tier-II and III cities. Large mounds of wastes not only posed a health hazard and posed a threat to the environment but were also major eyesores. He said that the power ministry had taken a decision to support such plants, irrespective of the cost of the production of gas from them vis-à-vis other means. He said that technology being used in the Delhi plant will not only result in less emission but also provide usable residues.
Anil Baijal said that solid waste management was a big challenge in the national capital. On the one hand, there was a legacy of big mounds of waste accumulated over several decades, while on the other hand, there was not enough space for the current waste. The city had the capacity to process only half of its waste. The commissioning of such plants will not only provide a clean and environment-friendly way to handle solid wastes but also generate gas and manure.