New Delhi, Feb 8 : The National Thermal Power Corp (NTPC) has invited bids for procurement of 1,000 tonnes of agricultural biomass on daily basis for its power plant in Dadri in Uttar Pradesh to provide an alternative to stubble burning -- a major reason for air pollution in northern India.
"After completing the initial phases of the test firing of biomass-based pellets, NTPC has invited bids to supply 1,000 tonnes per day of agro residue based fuel," it said in a statement.
The move has come after the National Green Tribunal (NGT) asked NTPC if crop residue could be used for power generation in order to provide an alternative to farmers, who burnt their farms to get rid of rice straw as manual removal is time-consuming and expensive exercise.
Open burning of biomass has been found as a major source of air pollution in northern India, especially in and around Delhi.
"Understanding the gravity of the problem, NTPC initiated a programme to consume agro residue based fuel for firing in their power plants along with coal," it said.
The tender will be for two years for 1,000 tonnes per day -- 500 tonnes of agro residue pallets and 500 metric tonnes of pellets or briquettes of torrefied agro residue, Successful bidders will have to start delivery to the 2,650 MW plant in Dadri from September 2018.
It has kept a capping price of Rs 5,500 per tonne for agro residue based pellets and Rs 6,600 per tonne for pellets or briquettes of torrefied agro residue.
In order to attract start-ups and seek greater participation, NTPC has allowed participation of bidders without any prior experience.
The NTPC also said agro residue would be used in its other power plants across the country if it gets sufficient bidders.
It will help in increasing the share of renewable energy in the country, reducing the carbon footprint of thermal power plants, discourage in-field crop burning abating pollution, and create large scale rural employment opportunities, the corporation said.