Mumbai: Development of biodiesel as an alternative source of energy holds a significant potential for the country in the field of agriculture besides ensuring energy security, says a report.
A target to meet 5% of energy needs through biodiesel could generate 2.4 million jobs besides ensuring cultivation of 2.8 million hectares of waste land and an additional combined yearly farm income of Rs42 billion (Rs1,71,655crore) from the fourth year onwards, a CII-Rabobank report has said.
Biodiesel initiatives can lead to considerable improvements for the rural population. Deploying wasteland for biodiesel production in the country thus seems like a win-win situation for both the government and farmers, it said.
The US Agricultural Department puts India’s 2006-07 oilseed production at 29.5 million tonne, which includes rapeseed, soybeans and sunflower seed. India is among the largest soybean producers in the world at 7.3 million tonne.
The Planning Commission has also said that with 7 million hectares, a potential biodiesel production of 7 million tonne could be realised, equal to more than 10% of the country’s projected diesel consumption in 2011-12.