Coal India Ltd (CIL) will ink three major pacts next week that will ease the way for setting up of coal-to-chemical projects through the surface coal gasification (SCG) route. The company will join hands with three major PSUs — Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL), Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) and GAIL (India) — for setting up four SCG projects.
“Coal India Limited (CIL), under the aegis of the Ministry of Coal, will be inking three major Memorandum of Undertaking (MoU) on 27th September 2022 in New Delhi,” the coal ministry said in a statement on Friday.
It added that through the SCG route, coal is converted into syngas that can be subsequently processed for downstream production of value-added chemicals. These are otherwise produced through imported natural gas or crude oil. Envisaged end products would be di-methyl ether, synthetic natural gas and ammonium nitrate.
“The upside of the proposed projects are reduced forex outgo and direct and indirect employment generation to the tune of 23,000. With the twin objectives of self-reliance and energy independence, the Ministry of Coal has set a target for achieving 100 million tonne coal gasification by 2030,” the ministry said.
According to official data, India’s overall coal production increased by 8.27 per cent to 58.33 million tonnes (MT) from 53.88 MT during August 2022 as compared to Aug 2021. As per the provisional statistics of the Ministry of Coal, during August 2022, Coal India Ltd (CIL) and captive mines/ others registered a growth of 8.49 per cent and 27.06 per cent by producing 46.22 MT and 8.02 MT respectively. However, SCCL registered a negative growth of 17.49 per cent during the month. Of the top 37 coal-producing mines in the country, 25 mines produced more than 100 per cent while the production level of five mines stood between 80 and 100 per cent.
At the same time, coal despatch increased by 5.41 per cent to 63.43 MT from 60.18 MT during August 2022 as compared to August 2021. During August 2022, CIL and captive/others registered a growth of 5.11 per cent and 26.29 per cent by despatching 51.12 MT and 8.28 MT, respectively.
The power utilities despatch has grown 10.84 per cent to 54.09 MT during August 2022 as compared with 48.80 MT in August 2021 due to an increase in power demand.