The Kerala Cabinet has given its approval for Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited to set up a waste-to-bio-CNG, also known as compressed biogas plant in Kochi.

The plant will come up on the land owned by the Kochi Corporation at Brahmapuram. The Union government’s policy encouraging biofuels is also considered favourable for the proposed plant.

Initially, the plant will be able to treat and convert 150 tonnes of waste into compressed biogas. Gradually, the capacity will be enhanced thus enabling treatment of waste from other local bodies as well.

BPCL will bear the entire cost. The plant is being proposed along the model functioning in Indore [famed for its sustained and scientific waste treatment]. The compressed biogas generated will be sold by the oil company through its avenues, said Kochi Mayor M. Anilkumar.

The proposal had already received the approval of the BPCL board. BPCL had made a presentation on the proposal before Industries Minister P. Rajeev and Local Self-Government Minister M.B. Rajesh a couple of months ago.

The company has been asked to submit a detailed project report by October 1.

BPCL had invited tender for the selection of a consultant to draw up a detailed project report. Once it is readied, the Corporation council will discuss it and decide on further course of action, the Mayor said.

The proposal to set up a new plant was conceived in the aftermath of the fire at the solid waste treatment plant at Brahmapuram in March. The existing plant had turned defunct long ago and has been merely serving as a dumping yard. Since the fire, only biodegradable waste is being dumped at the plant as the stacked-up plastic garbage had caused the blaze, leading to almost a fortnight-long fire.