26 Jul 2017

Government plans to shift road-based public transport system to clean fuel.

Source:  India Today

The road transport and highways ministry plans to shift the road-based public transport system entirely from diesel to clean fuel.

The ministry of road transport and highways has chalked out a plan to shift the road-based public transport system entirely from diesel to electricity and other clean fuel even as the utility of alternate fuels like ethanol remains doubtful.

The ministry is exploring electric highway and induction and rooftop charging of electric vehicles, while the power and petroleum ministries are also preparing policy for use of at least five alternate fuels, including methanol and ethanol, to be made from large agro-waste.

Transport minister Nitin Gadkari said India has the capacity to run 50,000 buses on ethanol given the huge quantity of waste generated from the agriculture sector.

However, concerns have been raised over use of ethanol as an alternate fuel in India. The concerns are primarily on the ground that ethanol lowers the mileage of the vehicle up to 25 per cent even as it does not affect the performance of vehicles.


Further, there was no policy regarding production and use of ethanol as a fuel that also resulted in its failure in India.

The government is also exploring ways to increase the usage of bio-gas, CNG, LNG and methanol as fuels that are cleaner and cost-effective as compared to petrol and diesel. Trials of methanol-run buses will start soon with 50 buses in Mumbai and Pune.

A proposal in this regard has been made to the Niti Aayog, Gadkari said. Besides, plans were afoot to transform public transportation in the country and replace 1.8 lakh buses across the states with luxury buses, he added.

Talks are on with World Bank and ADB to help India to replicate the London Transport Authority Model.