Study on “Possible Uses of Crop Residue for Energy Generation Instead of Open Burning”

Rice-wheat cropping system is dominant in the area constituting Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, and Nepal; resultantly, this area is producing enormous quantity of rice straw residues, which are generally burnt in open air. This has some short-term advantages to the farmers; however, it also results in health and environmental problems. The black carbon emissions from crop residue burning combines with dense winter fog and give rise to atmospheric smog in South Asia. This smog has serious negative health impacts, and leads to eye infections, coughing, headache, asthma, allergies etc. Smog is also particularly bad for cardiac patients. Therefore, to counter these environmental and health impacts, the open air burning of crops needs to be minimized.

SAARC Energy Centre conducted this study to evaluate other possible uses of the crop residues instead of open burning. There is good potential for use of crop residues (including rice), and the focus of this study is on the alternate uses for crop residues.

Assessment of alternate options for using crop residue instead of open burning in the fields. This includes technology options such as synthesis gas generated through gasification process and its uses.

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Study on "Assessment of “Industry Readiness for Manufacturing of Battery Electric Vehicles in SAARC countries (India and Pakistan)"

The purpose of this study is to assess the manufacturing readiness of two SAARC Member States (India and Pakistan) in BEV supply chain by surveying local supply industry stakeholders, collecting their feedback and suggestions for potential improvements, and making region-specific recommendations. To accomplish this, the study will develop a framework to assess the readiness of automotive industry in respect to BEV manufacturing. Towards this end, a field study of automotive industry has been conducted through interviews, surveys, and focus group discussions with automotive manufacturers and assemblers, and the manufacturers and assemblers of important BEV components including battery, electric motor, controller, cables and associated hardware and software.

The data is analysed and a comprehensive readiness status of the automotive industry as per the study framework is compiled. The study provides an assessment of the performance of competitively advantageous areas of indigenous automotive industry in BEV manufacturing domain. These findings are supplemented and compared with the global best practices using case study analyses of leading countries in BEV manufacturing and adoption. Lastly, it proposes recommendations to assist indigenous automotive industry in member countries to develop strengths in BEV manufacturing, assembling, and related upstream and downstream businesses along with elaborating sustainable strategies and effective pathways to develop and expand the indigenous BEV related industry.

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Study on “Assessment of Clean Power Generation Technologies Using Low Calorific Value Coal in SAARC Region”

SAARC region is one of the most energy intensive regions in the world, owing to increasing economic activity and growing population. However, the per capita electricity consumption of SAARC region stands at 576 kWh/year, which is very low compared to developed countries like the US, the EU and developing countries such as Brazil and China. It is also lower than the global average of 2,977 kWh.

With respect to power generation, the total installed capacity of SAARC region is 393 GW as on FY 2019, which is a mix of varied energy resources. For example, India is highly dependent on coal as its primary fuel, while Bhutan, Nepal and Sri Lanka are heavily reliant on hydro resources in this regard. Afghanistan is dependent on imported energy and Maldives meets most of its commercial energy needs through oil. Bangladesh and Pakistan primarily use natural gas and oil for the same reason.

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Study on "Assessment of Pipelines as Preferred Mode of Movement of Crude/Oil Products Within SAARC Member States"

The most preferable mode of transportation of mass commercial crude/oil products is a pipeline because it is safe, cost effective, and reduces traffic and pollution to a great extent. Pipeline systems can serve large regions of the country or move petroleum from one region to another. For pipelines, the type, layout, location, number, and capacity of facilities are of strategic importance. The planning of a pipeline necessitates the investigation of several alternatives in order to determine whether the project is justified. Comparisons may have to be made with alternative locations for the pipeline, and the shortest and most direct alignment between origin and destination. However, deviations may be necessary because of topographic and other environmental considerations, land use, right of way, and the need to pass near certain supply or delivery points or to skirt heavily population areas.

Bangladesh and Pakistan meet part of their petroleum products requirement indigenously, but rely heavily on imports. In contrast, the remaining five SAARC member states except India meet their entire requirement via imports. Hence, transportation of crude/oil products is a major activity throughout SAARC Member States. Therefore, to reiterate, the logistics of petroleum product supply chain should be arranged as safely, efficiently and effectively as possible. In view of these factors, the purpose of the study is to identify, assess and describe the potential, strategies and logistic aspects of the commercial operation of crude/oil pipeline within and among the SAARC Member States.

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Study on "Action Plan for Electricity Utilities of SAARC Countries to Introduce EV Charging Infrastructure” (India, Pakistan and Bhutan)

This report has assessed the EV market in the three SAARC Member States (SMS), namely Bhutan, India and Pakistan, and devised an action plan for an electric utility in each of the three geographies to deploy EV charging infrastructure in their respective licensee areas. Electric utilities, which have been in the business of selling power to their customers, have a new business opportunity ahead as electricity becomes the new oil for vehicles. However, conventionally, utilities across the world (albeit exceptions) tend to take a conservative “wait and watch” approach in the initial phases of EV adoption, and due to bureaucratic structures, lack of government interest (for state-owned utilities) and unpreparedness towards changing business areas, their participation is this new business opportunity is affected. The report intends to allay some of the uncertainties of such utilities by enumerating scalable business models based on feasibility and practicability.

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