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The Assam Petrochemicals Limited (APL) will start a pilot project on October 5 on the use of methanol as an alternative to cooking gas.
APL Chairman Jagadish Bhuyan told the media here on Friday that the use of methanol or methyl alcohol as an alternative to liquified petroleum gas (LPG) will help reduce cost of cooking. "We will launch the pilot project at our APL township on October 5. If it is a success, we will launch it commercially," said Bhuyan.
"Methanol is a green and clean fuel that is safer as well as cheaper by 30 per cent compared with LPG," he said.
APL is one of the few profit-making public sector undertakings of the Assam government. APL was established in Namrup in 1971 with a production capacity of 21 tonnes of methanol per day. The company could so far increase its production capacity to 100 tonnes of methanol per day.
Bhuyan said that NITI Aayog has been urging all states to promote methanol economy. "If we launch it commercially, we will use a technology imported from Sweden for distribution," he said.
APL Managing Director Ratul Mahanta said that countries like China, Iran and others have been using methanol to run buses and trains for a long time. He said that the APL is likely to produce 600 tonnes of methanol daily by September next year. "We are also working to convert gases produced in our refineries into methanol," he said.
Although there is not many buyers of methanol in Assam, the APL sells its products to north and northeast Indian states, besides Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar and Bangladesh.
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