DBT-sponsored national repository for microalgae inaugurated at BDU

[India] Biofuel can meet energy needs in a cost-effective manner, says senior official. 

Stating that the Centre had expedited steps to promote bio-fuel to meet energy requirements, Sangita M. Kasture, Joint Director, Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science and Technology, said cultivation of micro algae in marine and fresh water could play a major role as they can be used as bio-fuel to be blended with diesel.

Inaugurating the National Repository for Microalgae and Cyanobacteria-Freshwater at Bharathidasan University here on Thursday, she said the Centre had recently approved a national policy on bio-fuel. It was aimed at reducing oil import dependence by promoting biofuel. The policy had expanded the scope of raw material for ethanol production. And it had set a target of 10% ethanol blending in petrol by 2022.

Ms. Kasture said biofuel derived from renewable biomass resources could provide a strategic advantage in supplementing conventional energy sources. Biofuel could satisfy energy needs in cost-effective manner while reducing dependence on import of fossil fuels. But there was a long way to go in achieving the target on blending ethanol with petrol and biofuel with diesel due to various reasons. However, the oil content from microalgae grown in marine and fresh water could supplement the biofuel requirement in a massive way. Hence, stakeholders should take a cue in cultivating microalgae from marine and fresh water.

Vice-Chancellor P. Manisankar said the repository, set up with DBT sponsorship, had a collection of about 200 cultures. It was one of the very few repositories in the country. Similarly, the university had over 1,000 cultures for marine water. It was a good opportunity for stakeholders to carry out research on promoting bio-fuel from micro algae in marine and fresh water.

N. Thajuddin, Head, Department of Microbiology, N. Anand, former Vice-Chancellor, Vels University, Chennai, and V. Sivasubramanian, Director, Phycospectrum, Chennai, spoke.

 

Photo: Sangita M. Kasture, Joint Director, Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science and Technology, and Vice-Chancellor P. Manisankar at the National Repository for Microalgae and Cyanobacteria-Freshwater at Bharathidasan University in Tiruchi on Thursday.

View original article at: DBT-sponsored national repository for micro-algae inaugurated at BDU

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