A fleet of commercial cars run exclusively on bio-fuel introduced in Gurgaon

Residents as well as office-goers in Gurgaon can expect a marginal reduction in the city’s alarming pollution levels with the introduction of a fleet of commercial cars that run on 100 per cent bio-fuel.

A Gurgaon-based supply chain solutions provider, Earth 100, has launched the cars in its bid to promote eco-friendly fuel.

Megha Rathee, COO of Earth 100, said, “We have had successful pilot projects in Bangalore and Mumbai too and are confident that the cars introduced in the first phase in Gurgaon will be very well accepted. Acceptability and demand for such green vehicles has also gone up and clients are willing to pay a premium for green services now. We plan to start operations in Mumbai and Bangalore soon creating new benchmarks in the carbon footprint reduction space.”

With skyrocketing energy demands and India being one of the largest petroleum consuming countries importing about 186.7 million tonne in 2012-13, alternative sources of energy have become a necessity. About 70 per cent of India’s energy generation capacity is from fossil fuels with coal accounting for 40 per cent of the total energy consumption followed by crude oil and natural gas at 24 per cent and six per cent respectively.

By 2030, India’s dependence on energy imports is expected to exceed 53 per cent of the country’s total energy consumption. In 2009-10, the country imported 159.26 million tonnes of crude oil which amounts to 80 per cent of its domestic crude oil consumption and 31 per cent of the country’s total imports are oil imports.

Jatropha is one of the most widely used plants for bio-diesel production in India, and it has been identified as a best possible source, largely because the plant is grown across the country and requires little maintenance. It has a high yield of 40 per cent oil, which makes it very cost-effective. Use of bio-diesel in India, however, remains limited, despite large scale availability of jatropha.

Of the 600,000 sq km of wasteland that is available in India, over 300,000 sq km is suitable for jatropha cultivation. Once this plant is grown, it has a useful lifespan of several decades.

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