On 7th October 2021, the Indian Biogas Association (IBA) and the World Biogas Association (WBA) hosted a joint webinar on “Biogas/Bio-CNG: Opportunities in India” to provide insight into the growing biogas and bio-CNG market in India.
Mr. Gaurav Kedia, Chairman, IBA, explained: “Interest in Biogas/Bio-CNG continues to grow globally, and the virtual event was organised to showcase the highly potent Indian biogas market to foreign investors focussing on this sector. With the economic outlook looking brighter amidst post-pandemic market corrections, the Indian biogas industry anticipates unlocking a plethora of FDI opportunities. This online event was a precursor to that.”
Shri. Nitin Gadkari, Hon’ble Minister of Road Transport and Highways lent his gracious presence to open the webinar. In his keynote address, he emphasised “India’s pursuit to be self-dependent through the ‘AtmaNirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’ (Self-reliant India programme). The biogas/CBG industry, with the tremendous potential it has, shall play a critical role to bridge the present trade-deficit scenario of India. The bridging shall happen in terms of reducing the overall import of crude oil and fertilizer, mitigating the climate change effects of greenhouse gases (GHG), creation of huge employment opportunities across the industry value chain, and so on.” He then added, “ GoI (Government of India), encompassing several Ministries, have been supporting this industry. However, the need of the hour is to integrate all the incentives and resources, relevant to this industry, and the onus for same remains with industry stakeholders”.
The webinar enabled industry stakeholders, especially global participants, to better understand the existing Indian ecosystem for biogas/bio-CNG. The two and a half-hour webinar offered a perfect blend of national and international speakers, featuring Dr. A.R Shukla-President IBA, Ms. Charlotte Morton – Chief Executive, WBA, Mr. Abhijit Rajguru – General Manager, Clarke Energy, and Mr. Jeremy Moorhouse – Bioenergy Analyst, International Energy Agency.
The webinar was well-received by participants, as alongside presenting opportunities, it addressed the various challenges faced by the biogas/bio-CNG stakeholders, such as financial closures of projects, difficulty in loan availability, getting the requisite permits and clearances, and the adequacy of government subsidy. These bottlenecks were identified as a higher priority in a recent online survey, conducted by IBA amongst its members from the bio-CNG industry.
Dr. A.R Shukla, President of IBA , commented: “The discussion on the list of prioritized bottlenecks during the webinar shall go a long way in unlocking the true potential of the industry by allaying the deep-rooted and ever-existent concerns amongst the industry stakeholders, especially the foreign investors.”
Charlotte Morton, Chief Executive of WBA, said: “The Indian biogas market represents a huge opportunity for international investors to support sustainable development in India and ensure economic growth in the country, whilst at the same time addressing climate change issues and helping India achieve its Paris Agreement targets. We were delighted to partner IBA in hosting this webinar, which we hope will facilitate fruitful relationships for the deployment of biogas and bioCNG technology in India.”