To solve the problem of air pollution caused by stubble burning in the fields and to reduce the carbon footprint of thermal power generation, the Ministry of Power has decided to establish a national mission on use of biomass in coal-based thermal power plants. This will further pave the way for moving towards cleaner energy sources in the country.
The “National Mission on the Use of Biomass in Thermal Power Plants” will have the following objectives:
- To raise the level of co-firing from the present 5 percent to a higher level to get a larger share of carbon neutral power generation from thermal power plants.
- To undertake R&D (R&D) activity in boiler design to handle excess amount of silica, alkali in biomass pellets.
- Facilitate the removal of biomass pellets and agricultural residues in the supply chain and its transport to power plants.
- To consider regulatory issues in biomass co-firing.
The modalities of operation and structure of the National Mission are being finalized. It is envisaged that the Mission will have a Steering Committee headed by Secretary (Power) comprising all stakeholders including representatives from Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas (MOPNG), Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) etc. CEA member (Thermal) will be the chairman of the executive committee. NTPC will play a major role in providing logistics and infrastructure support in the proposed National Mission. The mission will consist of full-time officers from CEA, NTPC, DVC and NLC or other participating organisations. The duration of the proposed national mission will be a minimum of five years.
The proposed National Mission on Biomass will also contribute to the National Clean Air Program (NCAP).