Costly LPG makes villagers opt for biogas plants
Increasing prices of liquefied petroleum gas for cooking purposes and difficulties associated with buying cooking gas cylinders have turned biogas plants an attractive option in rural areas.punjab Updated: Jun 13, 2012 22:41 IST
Increasing prices of liquefied petroleum gas for cooking purposes and difficulties associated with buying cooking gas cylinders have turned biogas plants an attractive option in rural areas.
According to Punjab Energy Development Authority (PEDA), it has been getting good response from villagers, which has helped it surpass its annual targets of installing biogas plants.
Anupam Nanda, senior manager, PEDA, said, "Our target for 2011-12 for installing biogas plants was 10,000. However, we have installed 12,000 units. In Ludhiana, our target was 700 plants, but 1,100 plants have been installed till date. This certainly points towards a rising trend of biogas plants."
Nanda said households with at least four cattle head could opt for a biogas plant.
"Once constructed, the plant provides cooking gas, that can be used for six hours. The average cost of biogas unit varies between Rs 25,000 to Rs 28,000. The government provides subsidy of Rs 8,000 on this," he added.
He said the gas provided by a biogas unit in a month was equivalent to two-and-a-half LPG gas cylinders.
"The LPG gas cylinder costs around Rs 415, which means after investing Rs 17,000 to 20,000, on biogas plant, the owner can save around Rs 1,040 per month," he added.
Gurmail Singh from Ayali village, who has set up a biogas plant in his house, said, "I am very satisfied with the plant. Now, I do not have to worry about the LPG gas. The plant helps me save money."
The plant also produces organic compost as waste, which can be used in farming. Therefore, it provides an additional source of income to the biogas plant owner, Nanda added.