The demand for biodiesel in Rajasthan has increased considerably diesel becoming costlier day by day. The state government has already rolled out a biofuel policy and is working to popularise the usage of green fuel.
Recently, the Rajasthan Petroleum Dealers Association had written to chief secretary Niranjan Arya that the Centre’s biofuel policy did not allow retailing of biofuel by producers. It is through oil marketing firms of the government that retailing can be done.
However, Surendra Singh Rathore, CEO of Biofuel Authority of Rajasthan, said there are clear guidelines for retailing of biofuel. As per Rathore, “The Centre’s guidelines allow private retailing of biofuels and the state policy has adhered to all the guidelines while allowing retailing”.
Production Capacity of Biofuels in Rajasthan
Rajasthan was the first state to roll out the biofuel policy and has attracted investments of about Rs 125 crore with 11 plants already operating. Cumulatively, the 11 plants have the capacity to produce 4.20 lakh litres a day, but the current production is 2 lakh litres a month against the diesel sales of 4.50 lakh litre per day. However, with the demand for biodiesel in Rajasthan rising, this is only going to increase in future.
The state government has also constituted the Rajasthan Biofuel Authority (website) under the ministry of panchayat raj and rural development. The biofuels cost around Rs 70 per litre much less than the price of normal diesel which have risen over Rs 100 recently.
Concerns of Base Oil Mixing
There has also been concerns of mixing of another fuel, Base Oil with the fuels. Base Oil also costs around Rs.70 and there are rumours of mixing with the fuel. However, government officials have denied these allegations as baseless rumours by petroleum lobby.
What is Base Oil
Base oil is the waste derivate of the diesel and other oils and used in industrial applications. But after the spike in fuel prices, illegal sale of base oil as a motor fuel has increased significantly. It is not only damages parts of vehicles, but also highly polluting.