State-run GAIL has set a target to become net zero with respect to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2040, its Chairman and Managing Director Manoj Jain said on Friday.

“In line with India’s vision to achieve net zero by 2070, GAIL has completed a comprehensive study on science-based net zero ambition and intends to achieve 100 per cent reduction in scope-1 and scope-2 emissions and a 35 per cent reduction in scope-3 emissions by 2040,” Jain said at the PSU’s annual shareholders’ meet.

For an oil & gas company, the bulk of GHG emissions are due to direct fuel burning for deriving energy from heat, steam, electricity and cooling, as required in operations, which constitutes scope-1 emissions. Scope-2 emissions are due to electricity purchased from the grid, while scope-3 includes all other indirect emissions that occur in a company’s value chain.

Challenging 2021

Jain pointed out that global events that unfolded during the previous year have the potential to alter the structural landscape of the energy sector.

“Adding to it, as Covid-19 restrictions around much of the world are relaxed and economic activity recovers, energy consumption is expanding sharply, putting available energy supplies under strain and highlighting fragilities in the system. The company has successfully steered its course during this demanding period, emerging only stronger and resilient,” he added.

The future is green

Emphasising on the transition towards clean energy, Jain said with an existing LNG portfolio of more than 14 million tonnes per annum (mtpa), diversity in supply sources and price indices, GAIL is well poised to cater to the needs of its customers.

“While, additional gas sourcing opportunities are being scouted to further consolidate the gas portfolio and strengthen the core business, the company has also embarked upon alternate energies like green hydrogen, renewables and bio-fuels projects,” he added.

To that effect, the company is setting up a green hydrogen production unit with a capacity of 4.3 tonnes per day at Vijaipur (MP), which will produce green hydrogen using polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) technology, based on water electrolysis.

“Further, GAIL is also setting up a 10 MW ground-mounted solar power project at Vijaipur. Also, study on technical feasibility of hydrogen blending in natural gas/ CGD network has been initiated,” he said.

Jain informed the shareholders that the Maharatna company has also taken few initiatives on compressed bio-gas (CBG). In line with the National Hydrogen Mission, GAIL has commenced India’s first-of-its-kind project of mixing hydrogen with natural gas at Indore. The hydrogen blended natural gas is being supplied to Aavantika Gas, a JV of GAIL and HPCL, operating in Indore.

Expansion

Jain informed shareholders that GAIL has been working tirelessly to strengthen its core business and today, it owns and operates about 14,500 km of trunk natural gas pipeline representing nearly two-third of the country’s existing network.

“Work is progressing at a promising pace on construction of nearly 5,000 km of additional natural gas pipelines, which on completion is expected to bolster transmission quantities and provide extensive geographical reach within the country. The company is also actively scouting for additional gas sourcing opportunities to serve its clientele, both existing and new accretions,” he added.

GAIL is also exploring avenues to supply gas in new segments like LNG trucking. “In a first-of-its-kind endeavor, the company plans to enter into distributed LNG production with the vision to cater to the demand from off-grid locations and the transport sector. With these goals in mind, we have placed an order for two small-scale liquefaction skids capable of producing LNG on a pilot basis,” Jain said.

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