Odisha Governor Ganeshi Lal laid the foundation stone of the country's first 2G ethanol bio-refinery in Bargarh district on Wednesday.
Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited will set up the ethanol plant with an investment of Rs 1,000 crore to produce three crore litres of fuel-grade ethanol annually. The ethanol produced from this plant will be blended with petrol.
Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, present on the occasion, said the refinery will be a harbinger of socio-economic development in Odisha.
"With production of 17-18 lakh metric tonne paddy at Bargarh, there is always an equal amount of straw production. Farmers hardly use 6-7 lakh metric tonnes as fodder for the cattle and other uses whereas they burn 10-12 lakh tonne that creates severe environmental hazards including the production of carbon," he said.
Pradhan said the setting up of the bio-refinery will be a permanent solution to such problems along with the economic development of the farmers.
The bio-refinery will utilise about two lakh tons of rice straw annually which will be sourced from nearby locations.
(With inputs from agencies.)