IGL works to expand CNG network by 2010 games

Vol 12, PW 13 (13 Nov 08) Midstream & Downstream

Gas retailer Indraprastha Gas is under pressure to ensure more CNG in the national capital Delhi ahead of the Commonwealth Games in 2010.

IGL has been handed an ambitious target to build 50 new CNG stations in Delhi following remarks by state chief minister Sheila Dikshit and oil minister Murli Deora on July 20 stating that the city would have ample CNG outlets to reduce queues of vehicles that clog already overcrowded roads. Delhi’s bus system, taxis and autorickshaws are legally required to run on CNG under Supreme Court orders made in 1999 to clean up air quality.

But the number of vehicles using CNG in Delhi has grown to more than 200,000 from almost zero while the number of CNG stations has risen to only 167 from 72 since the court order was implemented. PETROWATCH learns that a five-member IGL team led by managing director Rajesh Vedvyas met the chief secretary of the Delhi state government, Rakesh Mehta, on October 23 to discuss the allotment of land for the proposed 50 new CNG stations.

On October 25, newspapers quoted Mehta saying the city has allotted IGL land for 23 new CNG stations. But a source disputes the figure.

“What you read in the papers is wrong,â€‌ we hear. “The government has allotted land for 10 CNG stations only.

â€‌ IGL has instead started â€کre-organising’ its existing CNG stations to better meet demand. “We are working on increasing compression and dispensing capacity.

â€‌ IGL says demand for CNG will only rise because of the sharp price difference between petrol and diesel (Rs.50.62 per/litre and Rs34.86/litre respectively) and CNG at Rs19.20/per kg (Rs15.36 per litre).

In August this year, the company bought 50 new CNG dispensers and 41 â€کmotor driven’ compressors capable of dispensing 1200 cubic metres/hour of gas to increase the output of more than 200 existing compressors. Fifteen of the new compressors are already online.

“CNG sales at the 15 stations are up 35-40% and queues are vanishing.â€‌