Two Days National Seminar on "Management of Paddy Straw for Bio CNG, Manure, Employment and Swash Bharat" 16th-17th May 2018, CRRID, Chandigarh

Concept Note

 Management of paddy straw for bio CNG, manure, employment and Swash Bharat

According to Global Burden of Diseases Index and recent report of the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (GOI) air pollution and food are the top most health risks of the world. India has witnessed 1.6 million pre-mature deaths and 49 million disability adjusted life years due to house hold and ambient air pollution. Along with other sources, burning of rice residues is the major contributor to the environmental pollution especially in North West India.  The air quality index ranges from 0-500 scale and Delhi witnessed the value of 1010 i.e. more than two times of the upper limit at 8 PM on November 8, 2017.   Almost similar level of pollution  have been reported  from China, Pakistan, Bangladesh and other rice growing  countries of Asia.

Management of pollution has become a serious issue of policy, planning, implementation, governance, National Green Tribunal (NGT), judiciary, bureaucracy, civil societies and other stakeholders. Delhi, Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan were asked by NGT to submit action plan for managing the residues on March 13, 2018.  Green revolution in rice crop realized food security in India and its mechanized harvesting leaves behind vast quantities of straw or raw material.  Only a part of residues is utilized for fodder, mushroom cultivation, paper making and packaging. Out of 33.9 million tons of rice residue produced in Punjab, Haryana and Western UP, 23 million tons (68%) is being burnt. In spite of imposing fines, burning continued in the last season of 2017 and fines could not be realized because of organized lobbies of the farmers.

Rice straw has also been used as fuel for electricity generation in Punjab and elsewhere. At the investment rate of Rs. 6 crores per MW and fuel price of Rs. 3342.6 per ton (2015-16), a tariff of Rs 7.51 /unit was fixed by the regulatory authority of Punjab for 15 MW plants. This tariff is more than two times that of the actual average purchase rate of Rs. 3.5 per unit of electricity in the open market and is being subsidized heavily. The electricity tariffs of solar and wind energy are falling further and power generation from rice straw as fuel is not tenable proposition. More over combustion of straws/residue produces green house gases and pollutes air.

HPCL is setting up a rice straw based bio-refinery in Bathinda (Punjab) for ethanol production by investing Rs. 600 crore. However, methane generation by Anaerobic Digestion provides 37% more energy as compared to ethanol production by fermentation.

A budgetary provision of Rs. 1,151 crores for Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, UP and Rajasthan have been announced in the current budget of GOI as incentive for the machinery to retain straw as mulch or incorporate  into soil for maintaining its fertility and productivity. This option will increase cost of cultivation and green house gases will also be released in the process of decomposition of mulching of paddy straw.

A fourth alternative  of generating BIO CNG has become financially and commercially viable business model due to the latest second generation (2G) technologies of Anaerobic Digestion. There is almost zero emission of green house gases, also provides properly decomposed compost free from weeds/ pathogens and liquid manure to maintain soil health, its fertility and productivity sustainably. There is vast potential of creating primary and secondary level rural employment.

The GOI has also announced its new bio fuel policy to harness an economy of Rs. One lakh crores for substituting fossil fuel imports by domestic bio fuel. A budgetary provision of Rs. 7000 crores has also been announced to create CNG marketing infrastructure by the public sector Oil Marketing Companies including GAIL.  The Govt. of Punjab has also signed an MOU of Rs. 5000 crore with Indian Oil Company for bio gas and CNG production which has further signed MOU with private investors. Bio CNG is cheaper than fossil CNG by Rs. 10-15 per kg. The potentials of 2,645 million kgs of CNG is a business of more than Rs. 10,000 crores per annum in Punjab and Haryana. In addition to that, organic manure as by product of bio CNG production is a better substitute to traditional farm yard manure as recommended by PAU, Ludhiana. The second generation bio technology is a financially viable business model.  An investment of about Rs. 12,500 crores in setting up 400 plants in Punjab and 100 in Haryana is going to create employment for 2 lakh persons. The whole range of issues needs to be discussed and debated among all the stakeholders in the proposed workshop to arrive at viable solutions. 

Sub themes:

  • Mulching, incorporation, in situ decomposition and recycling;
  • Use of residues  as fuel for household, power and industrial uses;
  • An-aerobic Digestion for  bio-CNG, compost and liquid manure production and emissions reduction ;
  • Presentation of tested and patented technologies of power,  bio CNG and other bio fuels; 
  • Marketing, participation of stakeholders  and employment generation for the youth;
  • Enhancement of farmers income by managing rice residues; and
  • Interaction with private investors, public, civil societies and other stakeholders.

Objectives of the Seminar : Sub-themes /objectives are as under

  • Environmentally sustainable management of paddy straw
  • To exchange the knowledge, experience and technologies among the stakeholders
  • To identify constraints and bottlenecks of the policies in the light of new bio fuel policy
  • To quantify investment portfolio for a viable business model.

To assess the potentials of enhancing income of the farmers by waste to wealth transformation

Major topics to be discussed during the seminar:

  • Mulching, incorporation, in situ decomposition and recycling of straw
  • Use of residues as fuel for household, power and industrial uses
  • An-aerobic digestion for bio-CNG, compost and liquid manure production and emissions reduction
  • Presentation of tested and patented technologies of bio fuel.
  • Marketing, participation of stakeholders and employment generation for youth
  • Enhancing farmers' income by managing rice straw/residues
  • Interaction with private investors, public, civil societies and other stakeholders

Relevance of the Seminar:

Air and environmental pollution is a major concern of human health and sustainability of agriculture as well as farmers' well-being. Government of India has announced waste to wealth policy for sustainable development. Substitution of fossil fuel worth of Rs. one lakh crores from agriculture and other wastes. Adoption of second generation technologies for generating CNG from lignocellulosic bio-mass like paddy straw 0are being recommended. State run oil marketing companies are going to assure marketing of new bio fuels with an incentive of Rs. Seven Thousand Crores. Indian oil corporation has signed MOU for Rs. Five Thousand Crores with Punjab State and investors for setting up four hundred plants. Therefore, organizing of this seminar is very timely and relevant to the latest policy initiatives of new and advanced bio-technology in the country.


Dr. S K Mangal, Senior Vice-Chairman, Governing Body, CRRID, Chandigarh
Mobile: 9814915864

Dr. Krishan Chand, Director General (Acting), CRRID, Chandigarh
0172-2549450 (Direct)
EPABX: 0172-2725059/ 2725406 (Ext. 160/166), 9417392254 (M)
Fax: 0172-2725215, Email:,,