Punjab pushes biomass cogeneration

Biomass-based cogeneration plants are springing up in Punjab, India.

Sukhbir Agro Energy is planning to set up two paddy processing and co-generation power plants in Ferozepur and Mansa districts of Punjab with capital outlay of Rs 250 crore (€4 million) under a project scheme of the Punjab government.

The project in Ferozepur envisages setting up of 80 tonnes per hour (TPH) rice mill, 14.5MW biomass based co-generation power plant and construction of godown for storage of rice with capacity of 50,000 MT.

The project at Mansa envisages setting up of 20 TPH rice mill and a 14.5 MW biomass based co-generation power plant.

At present, the company has a rice mill and solvent extraction plant in Ferozepur district.

It has also set up an integrated food processing and 15MW biomass residue-based power plant in Uttar Pradesh with a capital outlay of Rs 125 crore. The unit comprises of a 50 TPH rice mill, 500 TPD solvent extraction plant, which commenced commercial production in December 2007 and a 15MW biomass-based power plant, which was completed and synchronised in February 2009.

In related news Universal Bio-Mass Energy recently commissioned a 14.5MW biomass power project in Muktsar district of Punjab. The project has been set up with capital outlay of Rs 78 crore.

The biomass-based power project is also eligible for carbon credit benefits under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) available under Kyoto Protocol adopted in December 1997. The plant would be using the biomass available in the region: cotton stalk, mustard stalk and other agriculture waste material.

It would procure biomass from local farmers through 40 collection centres set up by the company in the districts of Muktsar, Bathinda, Mansa and neighbouring states.

The farmers will be benefited by way of better price for their crop to the extent of Rs 7,000 to Rs 8,000 per acre a year.

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