GUWAHATI: For the first time, a state Inland Water Transport (IWT) vessel – SB Gangadhar fueled with methanol-blended diesel – had its trial run in the Brahmaputra in Guwahati today.
Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas Hardeep Singh Puri and Minister of State Rameswar Teli launched the vessel.
Teli said, "If this trial run proves successful without causing any technical snags in the engine, we will run all State Inland Water Transport vessels with this blended fuel. Today we used 15 per cent methanol with diesel. It leads to less carbon emission, and hence low the pollution".
Union Minister Puri said, "Assam Petrochemical Ltd (APL), Namrup, currently produces about 100 TPD of methanol. APL is setting up a project to produce 500 TPD of methanol. The work is in progress to set up coal-to-methanol plants in the country using indigenous technology developed by BHEL, Thermax and IIT-Delhi."
Puri added that methanol is a cost-effective alternative marine fuel. The cost to covert vessels to run on methanol is significantly less than other alternative fuel conversions.