In a significant move towards sustainable energy practices, the state-owned company Oil India Limited (OIL) has unveiled plans to invest a whopping Rs 25,000 crore in renewable energy initiatives. This strategic investment is part of OIL’s commitment to achieving net-zero emissions by the year 2040.
Ranjit Rath, Chairman and Managing Director of Oil India Ltd, made the announcement, outlining a comprehensive portfolio of renewable energy projects. The company is poised to diversify its operations by delving into various green technologies, including green hydrogen, solar energy, geothermal energy, 2G ethanol production, compressed biogas plants, and carbon capture utilization and storage (CCUS) systems. Additionally, OIL is embarking on initiatives aimed at eliminating flaring, further contributing to its eco-friendly endeavors.
One of the standout projects within this investment plan is the allocation of Rs 8,000 crore for the establishment of a 2G ethanol plant, as reported by the Financial Express. Rath shared insights into this ambitious endeavor, stating, “Our subsidiary, Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL), has already placed an order for replacing grey hydrogen with green hydrogen. We are targeting a 20-kilo tonne per annum capacity.”
Recognizing the government’s push to increase the share of gas in India’s energy mix from 6.2 percent to 15 percent, OIL is strategically planning to reduce gas flaring. This will be accomplished by compressing excess gas and redirecting it to city gas distributors (CGD) networks. As part of this strategy, the company is set to lay an 80-kilometer gas pipeline connecting Arunachal Pradesh to Assam, allowing for the seamless transportation of gas to Duliajan in Assam. From there, it will integrate into the northeast gas grid and the national gas grid, ensuring wider accessibility and distribution.
In addition to these initiatives, OIL is actively engaged in the construction of renewable energy projects, including a 620-megawatt (MW) solar capacity project in partnership with Assam and another 150 MW solar plant in collaboration with Himachal Pradesh, as reported by the Financial Express.
The company’s ambitious renewable energy investments come on the heels of its impressive performance in the oil and gas sector. OIL achieved record-breaking oil and gas production figures, with 3.18 million metric tonnes (MMT) of crude oil and 3.18 billion cubic meters (BCM) of natural gas in FY23. Looking ahead, OIL has set ambitious targets of reaching 4 MMT of crude oil and 5 BCM of natural gas production by the financial year 2024-25.
Chairman Ranjit Rath highlighted the company’s capital expenditure (capex) in FY23, which amounted to Rs 5,500 crore. Looking forward, OIL is planning a capex of Rs 7,500 crore on a standalone basis and an additional Rs 14,000 crore on a consolidated basis due to expansion activities at Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL). This investment reinforces OIL’s commitment to sustainable and responsible energy practices, paving the way for a greener and more environmentally friendly future in India’s energy landscape.