Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) is all set to build the country’s first green hydrogen plant at Mathura Refinery to meet the growing energy needs.
“Indian Oil has drawn a strategic growth path to focus on its core refining and fuel marketing businesses while making inroads into petrochemicals, hydrogen, and electric mobility over the next ten years”, Shrikant Madhav Vaidya, Chairman, IOC said in a statement.
Vaidya added that the company has a wind power project in Rajasthan and the management intends to wheel the power produced here to its Mathura refinery.
On the integration of core businesses of Indian Oil, Vaidya said, petroleum refining and marketing with higher petrochemical integration will continue to be the company’s key focus area and it will add 25 million tonnes (mt) of refining capacity by 2023-24. He also said forecasts by various agencies sees the country’s fuel demand climbing to 400-450 mt by 2040 as against 250 mt now.
There is a fresh momentum for scaling up hydrogen use across sectors globally. The company’s HCNG (hydrogen compressed natural gas) experiment in Delhi, wherein it converted 50 CNG BS-IV buses to run on HCNG fuel, has revealed benefits in reducing exhaust emissions and improving the fuel economy, said Vaidya.
Meanwhile, with the support of the Petroleum Ministry, Indian Oil is also in the process of setting up 1 tonne per day capacity pilot plants based on innovative hydrogen production technologies, and it will also operate 15 fuel cell buses in the Delhi NCR region along with Tata Motors.
“We recently shared a Statement of Intent with the Norwegian company Greenstat to set up a Centre of Excellence on Hydrogen in India to accelerate a gradual transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy. We intend to seed Hydrogen Mobility by commoditising the surplus quantities of hydrogen available at the Gujarat refinery with a hydrogen dispensing facility for fuel-cell electric vehicles,” said Vaidya.
Initially, this facility will be refuelling 25 buses per day with a ramp-up capability to refuel 75 fuel-cell buses per day. The project is likely to be operational soon, running the first set of buses from Gujarat Refinery to the Statue of Unity and other iconic sites in the vicinity.
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