Thiruvananthapuram: Even as oil firms on Monday offered to set up five Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) filling stations each in Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi and Kozhikode cities in a year, the high cost of CNG conversion ranging from Rs 3 lakh to Rs 10 lakh remains a cause of concern.
Transport commissioner Tomin J. Thachankary recommended mandating a cleaner CNG for the public transport and a green tax as an option for financing CNG conversion for the public transport as in many states. The move came close on the heels of the state government considering a proposal to operate CNG vehicles in prominent cities and the Green Tribunal putting brakes on diesel vehicles.
The transport commissioner quoting oil companies said considering the low cost of CNG (Rs 39 per kg) and about 150 percent fuel efficiency, the investment on conversion could be recovered in two years. At the meeting, the oil companies agreed to set up five CNG filling station each in three major cities. Kollam, Thrissur and Kannur will be in next phase, he said.
Since CNG pipeline is laid till Indian Oil Corporation main station at Kochi, it would be easy to extend to the proposed filling stations in Kochi. For Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode, CNG will be transported in liquefied form and regasified. Representatives of GAIL, HP, BPCL and IOC attended the meeting. Mr Thachankary said steps to popularise electric vehicles would also be initiated to reduce pollution....