The country’s first commercial-scale biomass-based hydrogen plant is coming up in the Khandwa district of Madhya Pradesh. The plant will produce a tonne of hydrogen per day, from 30 tonnes of biomass feedstock. It will also produce biochar and methane. The plant is being put up by a joint venture of Watomo Energies Ltd and Biezel Green Energy with an investment of ₹24 crore. Watomo Energies, headquartered in Mirzapur, Uttar Pradesh; Biezel Green is a company promoted by Prof Preetam Singh, who teaches at the IIT BHU. Biezel Green is the technology partner. The company owns the technology for a ‘thermally accelerated anerobic digestion (TAD) reactor’ that can produce hydrogen, methane and biochar from biomass. Watomo Energies describes itself as a “consulting, marketing, implementation and project management company’, and is more like a farmer-producer organization. Biezel Green will own 50 per cent in the yet-to-be named joint venture; the other 50 per cent will come come from interested farmers. Prof Singh, who was a student of Prof John Goodenough, who won the Nobel Prize in 1999 for his discovery of the Lithium-ion chemistry for batteries. Prof Singh told BusinessLine on Tuesday that the joint venture intends to get the Khandwa plant on-stream by July this year. Meanwhile, Biezel Green is also in talks with Swaraj Green Power and Fuel Ltd, owned by Ranjeet Singh Naik Nimbalkar, the Member of Parliament from Satara, Maharashtra, for putting up a biomass-based hydrogen-cum-biochar plant. Swaraj Green was in the news recently when it announced that it would put up Asia’s largest ethanol plant that would produce 1,100 kilo litres of ethanol a day.