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Thursday, November 26th, 2020

Coal India invites global bids to set up first of its kind Coal to Methanol project

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JNS: Coal India Limited (CIL) on Friday last floated an open global tender inviting bids for setting up a, first of its kind in India, coal to methanol (C2M) plant through surface coal gasification route on the Build-Own-Operate (BOO) model. Based on the outcome of pre-feasibility studies CIL has floated this tender to select the BOO operator for the life span of the plant which is expected to be 25 years. “This is a part of implementing the Methanol Economy program of the government aimed at reducing the country’s oil import bill”, said a senior executive of the company.

CIL owned Dankuni Coal Complex (DCC) in West Bengal, currently run by its subsidiary South Eastern Coalfields Limited, is identified as the project site for the proposed C2M plant.

The capital outlay of the entire plant is pegged at around Rs.6,000 Crores though the cost would not be borne out of CIL’s coffers. BOO operators would own and lease the plant, apart from designing, building, maintaining, producing and storing the product. However, CIL shall allocate the land, power, water to the operator for the proposed plant.  The land is available.

Approximately 6.76 Lakh Tonnes of methanol per annum is targeted to be produced from the plant to be used for blending with petrol up to 15%.  At this capacity, the plant will cater to the methanol requirement of four eastern states of the country – West Bengal, Odisha, Jharkhand and Bihar. CIL is in dialogue with IOCL and other government-owned oil companies for a long term tie-up for assured marketing of methanol.

CIL would also supply the low ash high calorific coal of Ranigunj coalfields, having an ash content of around 24%, as basic raw material for the production of 2,050 metric tonnes of methanol per day. CIL would meet around 1.5 Million Tonnes of coal requirement annually.

CIL has aligned itself with the national objective of reducing dependence on imported crude and the plan to set up the plant is a step in that direction. “It would also reposition coal as chemical feedstock from that of a conventional energy product resulting in a considerable decrease of carbon footprint”. India is a signatory to COP 21, Paris Climate Change Conference.

Project Developments India Limited (PDIL) the government-owned consultancy and engineering CPSE has been retained as the consultant for the selection of the BOO operator.

The prospective bidder should be an established BOO operator having successfully built plants on BOO basis in coal to liquid, coal gasification, coal to chemical, fertilizer and methanol and the like. While the mechanical setup of the plant is expected to be completed in 36 months, the actual commissioning of the plant is envisaged to be in 41 months. The last date for the submission of bids is 17 December’20.

DCC is a low-temperature carbonization plant set up under the fuel policy committee to meet the growing needs of environmentally friendly fuel requirements of domestic and industrial sectors. The commercial production of DCC has started in 1990.

 

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