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5 Alternate Fuels Available To The Industry After Petcoke Ban In NCR

Puneet Gupta | 10-Nov-17

Order passed by Hon’ble Supreme Court of India on 24th October 2017, banning use of petcoke and furnace oil in Delhi/NCR region has been portrayed as a boon to our environment and been celebrated as a populous stunt pulled by the EPCA. It has been 10 days (on 10th Nov 2017) since the ban came into effect and all use of petcoke has come to a halt, yet Delhi has still become a gas chamber. As a precaution, all schools have been cancelled for 3 days. All courtesy, stubble burning across Punjab & Haryana. Stop that EPCA!

 

One-sidedness of the order thus given, just to vent one’s frustration (read Supreme Court) at mistakes of another (read Government) has directly led to extreme chaos for the little guy, SME’s – Dyeing units, Paper Mills, Ceramics, Brick Kilns, Cement Plants, Tyre Makers, Oil Mills, Milk Processing Plants, etc who ironically are one of the biggest contributors to our economy and employment generation.

 

No time has been given by the court to the industry for a transition or to make adequate arrangements (matter has been adjourned till 13th Nov 2017). Result, several units have shut down since 1st Nov 2017. SME’s are scrambling to gauge the impact on their already strained businesses and make alternate fuel arrangements to survive.

 

In our effort to help the business community involved, we have come up with a list of all viable alternate fuels with their pros and cons, that the industry can use to survive this ordeal. These fuels are available in ample abundance on CoalShastra.com through the 100+ sellers onboard with us, with the most transparent & easy to use systems in place to a) protect our clients’ money, b) guarantee them best quality products &  c) get them the best price & service possible.

 

1. Thermal/Steam Coal – Indian Origin

 

This is available from mines in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh & Jharkhand. Domestic coal has on an average a Calorific Value, CV of 3400 – 3800 Gross As Received, GAR. This material is usually very cheap on an ex-mine basis. Ash is between 35-40% by weight, adding to disposal issues. There is a significant transportation costs from any of the above regions to NCR. All these factors combined, this option is less favorable.

 

2. Thermal/Steam Coal – Indonesian Origin

 

This is available at northern most ports of Gujarat, including Kandla, Mundra, Tuna & Navlakhi. Highest quality available from Indonesia has a CV of 5000 – 5400 GAR. This material is usually guided by demand and supply dynamics of the port. Ash is between 6 - 7% by weight, which is a plus. However, moisture ranges from 23 - 25% by weight, this is a big negative. Transportation costs from any of the above ports to NCR is below that from Jamnagar. This is a favorable option available.

 

3. Thermal/Steam Coal – USA Origin

 

This is available at all northern most ports of Gujarat. Highest quality available has a CV of 7100 – 7300 GAR. Ash is between 6-7% by weight, which is a plus. Moisture levels range from 7 – 10% by weight, another plus. Transportation costs from any of the above ports to NCR is below that from Jamnagar. This is the most favorable and economical options available.

 

4. Biomass Briquettes

 

This is available from neighboring states of Haryana, UP & Rajasthan. It is made from waste of Mustard, Soybean, Groundnut & Sawdust and has a CV of 3600 to a maximum of 4300 GAR. Ash is between 6 - 7% by weight, which is a plus. Moisture levels range from 5 - 7% by weight, another plus. Transportation costs to NCR is usually cheaper than all other alternates due to proximity. This product is a greener option and is even referred to as a renewable source, a plus. However, this is a highly un-organized sector, resulting in poor quality consistency and availability issues due to seasonality of the product are there. Due to these, it becomes unattractive option for industry in general and is less preferred. It is costlier when compared to coal, giving it another negative.

 

5. Biomass - Loose

 

This alternative is available from states of Haryana, UP & Rajasthan. The quality of available ranges from waste of Rice Husk has a Calorific Value, CV of 3300 to a maximum of 3600 GAR. Ash is between 6 - 7% by weight, which is a plus. Moisture levels range from 5 - 7% by weight, this is another plus. Transportation costs from any of the above locations to NCR is usually cheaper than other alternates due to proximity. This product is a greener option and is even referred to as a renewable source, a plus. However, this is a highly un-organized sector, resulting in poor quality consistency and big availability issues due to seasonality of the product. Also, a large area is required to store the material as it is voluminous. Due to these, it becomes an unattractive option for industry in general and is less preferred. It is costlier when compared to coal, giving it another negative.

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