Making bio-fuel from paddy straw
Expert says using crop residue in the right way best option to check the problem Rice residue burning has high global warming and pollution potentials. This was stated by Dr JS Samra, former CEO, National Rainfed Area Authority (NRAA), NITI Aayog, while delivering his talk during a brain storming workshop on “Crop residue management” at Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) here on Thursday. He was speaking on the topic “Generation of bio-CNG (Methane), manure, income, employment and clean environment from agro-waste” as part of NAAS Series Lecture, organised by the Ludhiana Chapter of National Academy of Agricultural Sciences (NAAS), PAU. On the occasion, Dr Baldev Singh Dhillon, Vice-Chancellor, PAU, was the chief guest, while Dr Samra was the guest of honour.
Advocating the use of paddy straw for the production of bio-CNG, Dr Samra said in the near future, vehicles would run on CNG. “The Government of India has earmarked Rs 7,000 crore budget in 2018-19 for setting up marketing infrastructure for bio-CNG. Indian Oil Corporation Limited has already signed a memorandum of understanding with the Punjab Government for setting up 400 plants in the state for the production of bio-CNG from paddy straw,” he disclosed.
Matter cannot be destroyed, but using it in a right form is one of the best options to curb residue burning menace in the state,” he observed. Dr Samra stressed on thinking out of the box and doing something class apart to tackle the problem of stubble burning in Punjab. Dr JS Mahal, director of Extension Education, PAU, while giving presentation on “Paddy straw management – Challenges, solutions and experience,” divulged that 20 million tonnes of paddy straw was produced in Punjab.
“Stubble burning leads to loss of nutrients, health hazards and accidents,” he added. Suggesting the options for straw management, he remarked “Best utilisation of paddy straw is its retention in the soil.” Dr HS Sidhu, Senior Research Engineer, Borlaug Institute for South Asia (BISA), Ludhiana, said they were promoting the use of PAU Happy Seeder and PAU Super Straw Management System to manage crop residue in fields. “Collection, residue incorporation and residue mulch are some of the straw management technologies involving the cost of Rs 2,500 per acre, Rs 4,500 per acre and Rs 1,500 per acre, respectively,” he informed.
In addition, two scientists, namely Dr Manju Wadhwa from Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU) and Dr Anil Kumar from CCS Haryana Agricultural University, Hisar, shared their views on crop residue management. Experts from corporate sector also highlighted the initiatives aken by them in this direction. Dr Dhillon appreciated the informative talk by the guest speaker, scientists and experts from the corporate sector. Later, he honoured them. Dr NS Bains, director of Research, PAU, said multiple technologies had been developed to provide solution to stubble burning menace in the state. Dr SS Kukal, Dean, College of Agriculture, PAU, and treasurer, Ludhiana Chapter of NAAS, proposed the vote of thanks. Dr PK Chhuneja, Head, Department of Entomology, coordinated the programme.