In a statement issued today, India’s Coal Ministry said it had successfully implemented plans to extract methane gas intended to be used to run a 500Kw electricity generation demonstration plant.
Minister of State in the Ministry of Coal Shri Pratik Prakashbapu Patil said the government’s policy for development of coal bed methane and coal mine methane had been put in place for extraction and exploitation of methane gas from coal seams.
The minister said the government and United Nations Development Programme/Global Environment Facility funded coalbed methane demonstration and utilization project at Bharat Coking Coal’s (BCCL) Moonidih mine had been successfully implemented and had proved the efficacy of the process in Indian geo-mining conditions.
The government has allotted 33 blocks for coal bed methane exploration and exploitation and one block has entered into commercial production.
Coal India Ltd has made plans for five CMM projects and two underground coal gasification projects in its command area and 20 new washeries have been proposed, bringing potential raw coal throughput capacity to 111Mtpa.
Although surface gasification facilities for coal have been established, the necessary technology for CTL and UCG is yet to be established in Indian-specific conditions.
The minister said Coal India had adopted a CMM project in its BCCL mines at Moonidih in Jharkhand and had implemented a number of coal-washery projects in BCCL and central coalfields in Jharkhand, western coalfields in Maharashtra and northern coalfields in Madhya Pradesh.
A number of washery projects have also been set up in the private sector in Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Orissa, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh.