State-run gas company GAIL (India) Ltd, has committed an investment of Rs. 1,750 crore to build a City Gas Distribution (CGD) network in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack. Of the envisaged investment, Rs. 1,000 crore would be spent on Bhubaneswar while the remaining Rs. 750 crore has been set aside for Cuttack. Gas distribution to households in the twin-city region is expected to be a reality by December 2019 or early 2020.
"The Jagdishpur-Haldia-Bokaro-Dhamra natural gas pipeline being built by GAIL would be the feeder line for gas supplies in Odisha. This pipeline is being constructed at a cost of Rs. 13,000 crore, of which Rs. 4,000 crore is being spent in Odisha. In two to three years, the entire pipeline would be constructed and commissioned," said A K Singh, executive director, GAIL (India) Ltd.
In Odisha, the 2,619-km Jagdishpur-Haldia-Bokaro-Dhamra natural gas pipeline would have a network of 762 km, covering 13 districts.
The CGD project proposes to cover a population of 0.5 million in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack in the next thee to five years. Apart from households, piped natural gas (PNG) would be supplied to industries and compressed natural gas (CNG) to vehicles under the 'Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga Yojana'. The PNG for households is estimated to be cheaper than subsidised Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) by 10-15 per cent.
In the next five years, 150,000 vehicles are expected to convert to CNG. Under the CGD project, 24 CNG stations would come up in Bhubaneswar and 25 in Cuttack. GAIL eyes gas sales of 0.5 mmscmd (million metric standard cubic metre per day) and 0.25 mmscmd in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack respectively.
"We will start work on the CGD in June this year. A pilot project would be initiated in Bhubaneswar. By December 2017, natural gas would be supplied to select households in the city. Initially, 1,000 households of Nalco and Railway employees would be covered under the pilot projects", said Ashutosh Karnatak, director (projects), GAIL (India) Ltd.