India needs to add 2 million barrels per day (bpd) of refining capacity by 2030 to help its economic expansion, even as it takes steps to move to cleaner fuels, said the chairman of Indian Oil Corp (IOC), the country's top refiner.
India, the world's third-biggest oil importer and consumer, currently has 5 million barrels per day of refining capacity. IOC controls about a third of that.
"We are an emerging economy and very aspirational economy and the development is linked to the energy consumption ... so obviously we can not be wishing away fossil fuels so early. They have a role to play," IOC's S.M. Vaidya said at the Platts APPEC 2021 conference on Monday.
However, there could be a dip in fossil fuel demand in two to three decades as the country moves to cleaner fuels, he said. To de-risk its core refining business, IOC plans to boost output of petrochemicals and lubes besides raising green energy use.
IOC has already announced plans to fuel its future expansion through green power.
The company has set up a plant to sell 18 per cent hydrogen spiked compressed natural gas (CNG) for automobile in Delhi, which cuts emissions for Euro-IV compliant engine buses to near Euro-VI levels.
"This is a breakthrough for us in terms of going the hydrogen way," he said, adding his firm would set up such plants across the country.
But mixing of hydrogen beyond 18 per cent is not feasible as that would require an overhaul of the existing pipeline network, he added.
This year, the APPEC conference is being held in a hybrid format, including in-person and virtual participants.