DR FA LONE WRITES ABOUT THE SCENARIO OF PETROL AND LPG CONSUMPTION IN SRINAGAR
The most important and primary energy resources in the world are oil (different types of petroleum products) and natural gas which account for 40% and 23% of the energy needs in the world respectively. Due to the limited petroleum reserves and their over exploitation, its huge rate of depletion is considered as one of the big threats to the energy demands of the world. India imports about 75% of these products from other countries and there is every need to avoid over use of the products and conserving this natural resource. Therefore, government of India set up Petroleum Conservation Research Association (PCRA) in 1976 to undertake studies to identify the potential and to make recommendations for achieving conservation of petroleum products in various sectors of the economy. Its main mandate is to organize multi-media campaigns amongst general masses for creating awareness for the conservation of petroleum products. The first campaign in this direction started with the celebration of an Oil Conservation Week (OCW) under the guidance of the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas (MPNG) in January 1991.Considering the overwhelming response and enthusiasm generated by OCW in the country, and to further increase the reach as well as the effectiveness of the oil conservation campaign, the duration of the program was increased to a fortnight from the year 1997 onwards and this is being celebrated from January 15th to 30thevery year.
During this fortnight, the entire oil industry undertakes various kinds of activities to emphasize the need and importance of the conservation of petroleum products and environment protection. In different States of India this is carried out through print and electronic media by organizing training programs, technical meets and distribution of literature in national as well as vernacular languages. However, very little is being done in Jammu and Kashmir State regarding this important issue which not only is concerned with the energy sector but is also a very significant environmental issue.
What are different fuels:
The different petroleum products are petrol (also named as gasoline or motor spirit), high speed diesel, kerosene and many other products. LPG (butane and propane) is the high grade petroleum obtained after refining the crude petroleum products. On the other hand, CNG (methane) is directly obtained and consumed. According to MPNG Annual Report (2010) the consumption of petroleum products has been increasing at a very steep rate from 3.5 MMT (million metric tones) in 1950-51 to 84.3 MMT in 1997-98, 145 MMT in 2008-09 and has reached more than 150 MMT in 2009-10. Amongst the various fuels in India diesel is consumed to the tune of 40 MMT followed by petrol 9.56 MMT, natural gas (7.96 MMT) and kerosene (7.02 MMT).
Fuel consumption in (Srinagar city):
Petrol and diesel: J&K State is fully dependent for petrol and diesel on the out side world. Out of the total 6.68 Lac vehicles in J&K State (Trafficinfo.2009), more than 2.43 lac are in Kashmir valley, 4.19 lac in Jammu and 0.063 lac in Ladakh region. In Srinagar city alone the total number of vehicles registered as on March 2009 are 1.57 lac out of which about 86% vehicles are petrol driven and only 14% vehicles run on diesel. According to estimates in Srinagar city alone about 35 oil filling stations sell approximately 1.15 lac liters of petrol and 80,000 liters of diesel per day which amounts to Rs 72.45 lac and 32.08 lac/day respectively. Thus in Srinagar city a whopping sum of about Rs 1.0453 crore is being spent each day for meeting petrol and diesel requirements. The annual budget on transport fuel amounts to Rs 381.53 crore. Srinagar city also looses approximately Rs 4.37 lacs every day to traffic jams (calculations for only 20% of the total vehicles wasting 20% of their fuel in Srinagar city in traffic jams during peak hours .
LPG: Liquefied petroleum gas is an important domestic fuel source and its annual consumption is about 95.48 lac MT in India. According to estimates in rural and urban areas the per capita consumption of LPG ranges from 4 - 21kg respectively, making an average of 12.5 kg/year. Thus about 33 grams of LPG are being used by each individual costing about Rs 0.90/day. For a population of about 13 lac, in Srinagar city the daily LPG consumption amounts to 38610 Kg costing Rs 11.20lac / day (calculated for only domestic consumption of 90% population only). The annual budget for this fuel amounts to Rs 40.88 crores.
Environmental Status: Transport sector contributes around 14% towards the global emissions of green house gases. Carbon dioxide represents the largest proportion (50-60%) of basket of greenhouse gas emissions. The vehicular pollution in Srinagar city contributes 472 tons of CO2 /day (apx). Besides this green house gas other pollutants like NOx ,SOx ,CO, benzene, aldehydes, PAH and particulate matter (suspended dust) are significantly added to the city atmosphere every day.(the health effect of these pollutants shall be discussed separately).
Strategies for Conservation of petrol and diesel:
1. Car Pooling. 4-5 persons going to same destination instead of using individual vehicles can travel together and alternatively use their vehicles. (If each of them uses a separate car and spends Rs 200/day, it will amount to Rs 1000 for 5 days/person). By car pooling each of them will have to spend only Rs 200 for 5 days thus can save Rs 800). Car pooling to work, will not only conserve fuel, be economical and less polluting but will also improve social relations with your colleagues.
2. Wherever possible, available and convenient, use public transport instead of using your personal transport at least once in 6 working days.
3. Matching the size of the vehicle to your need, would also go a long way in conserving fuel. For instance if you have the option of a personal car and a scooter, then use the scooter when only two persons have to travel, and the car if more persons have to travel or heavy luggage needs to be transported.
4. Regularly monitoring the desirable tyre pressures, timely servicing and tuning (renewal of lubricants for engine and gear boxes), following of correct driving habits like avoiding sudden speeding, braking, stopping, clutch riding, idling, over-speeding and over-loading.
5. It is our moral duty to regularly monitor our vehicles for emission control for various air pollutants and avoiding of wasteful driving for short distances.
6. Walking and cycling for short distances needs to be promoted. We can save fuel, money as well as improve our health standards (A vehicle carrying overweight people consumes more fuel and emits more pollutants).
7. Traffic police and the other concerned departments shall have to meticulously regulate the traffic at jamming points. Some of the most vulnerable spots in the city are Rambagh, Batmaloo, Lal chowk, Jahangir chowk, Bemina crossing, HMT crossing, Dal gate, etc. Timely movement of the vehicles to their destinations shall save the time as well as fuel. 8. Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and biofuels instead of petrol and diesel should be used as a fuel in transport sector as has been already done in many states of the country. It is a safe, clean burning and environment friendly fuel. By using CNG in vehicles, emissions like hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide and NOx reduce to about 70% as compared to other fuels.
9. In addition to increasing the frequency of non-stop bus services to longer routes, non stop matador services should be initiated on priority basis even for shorter distances of 6-7 km. There is a need to reduce the number of boarding/deboarding points particularly in traffic jam vulnerable areas. In the first trial and for easy shopping lets make Lal Chowk (Residency road from Polo view to Amira Kadal) a no traffic zone and divert traffic to other alternative routes.
Strategies for Conservation of LPG:
1.Soak cereals and pulses/dals for sometime (4-8 hours) before cooking. This reduces the cooking time as well as the fuel consumption.
2.For cooking meat, switch off the flame for 15 minutes after the first whistle of the pressure cooker rather than continuously making the cooker to whistle for 4-6 times.
3.While cooking, use wide bottom vessels with covers and use sufficient water for cooking.
4.Allow food articles, taken out of the refrigerators to attain room temperature before cooking them.
5.Pressure cookers, used with separators, lead to substantial fuel saving.
6. Reduce flame by bringing the burner knob to the simmer position, as soon as the water starts boiling.
7. Try to eat together, to avoid repeated warming of food. This not only saves fuel, but also preserves the nutritional value of food.
8 One cup of Nun Chai consumes 7 times more LPG than 1 cup of lipton chai
Now let’s ponder : Total consumption of petrol, diesel and LPG in Srinagar city amounts to about 85267 tons/year costing Rs 422.41 crores/year. By following the above tips if we are able to save only 5-20% of this natural resource in Srinagar city alone we can save Rs 21 – 84 crores / annum. Moreover, wastage of Rs 16 crore/year due to traffic jams needs to be seriously looked into and strategies evolved to streamline traffic in Srinagar city. Let us think rationally to save this money which could be utilized for education, development and other activities. Let us reshape our planning and attitude of caring for one another to safe guard the economical and environmental sustenance of our posterity.
(Dr. FA Lone is Associate Professor at Division of Environmental Sciences, SKUAST-K ,Srinagar.Feedback at: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Lastupdate on : Wed, 2 Feb 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 2 Feb 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 3 Feb 2011 00:00:00 IST
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