Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday dedicated Kochi – Mangaluru Natural Gas Pipeline to the Nation through a video conference. Governors and Chief Ministers of Karnataka and Kerala, along with Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas were also present on the occasion.
Speaking on the occasion, the Prime Minister termed this day as an important milestone for both the people of Kerala and Karnataka as the two states are being connected by a natural gas pipeline. He said the pipeline will have a positive impact on the economic growth of these two states. He said rapid expansion of Gas based economy is a must to achieve self reliant India and cited this as the reason behind Government’s push for ‘One Nation One Gas Grid’.
While listing the advantages of the pipeline, he said that the pipeline would improve the ease of living in both the states and reduce the expenses of the poor, middle class and entrepreneurs of both the states. He said the pipeline would become the base of the Gas Distribution System in many cities and would form the base of the CNG based transport system in these cities.
He said the pipeline would provide clean energy to Mangalore Refinery and would play a major role in reducing the pollution in both the states. He added the reduction of pollution will have a direct impact on the environment akin to planting millions of trees which would help in improving people’s health and reducing their health related expenditure. He said that less pollution and clean air would attract more tourists to the city.
The Prime Minister cited that experts around the world say that in the 21st century, whichever country emphasizes the most on connectivity and clean energy would reach new heights. He stressed that the pace of work in the connectivity front in the country happening now is never seen before in earlier decades. He further said in the 27 years before 2014, only a 15 thousand kilometer natural gas pipeline was built. But right now work is underway on more than 16 thousand kilometers of gas pipeline nationwide which will be complete in the next 5-6 years. He also cited examples of increased CNG fuel stations, PNG connections and LPG connections delivered by this Government which was never seen before. He said these increased connections have reduced the shortage of kerosene and many States and Union Territories have declared themselves kerosene free.
The Prime Minister said since 2014, the Government has brought in various reforms across the Oil and Gas sector covering exploration and production, natural gas, marketing and distribution. He announced that the Government plans to achieve ‘One Nation One Gas Grid’ and to shift to a gas-based economy as this gas has several environmental benefits. He said the Government is taking policy initiatives to increase the share of natural gas in India’s energy basket from 6 Percent to 15 Percent. “Dedication of the Kochi-Mangaluru natural gas pipeline of GAIL is part of our journey to move towards One Nation One Gas Grid. Clean energy is important for a better future. This pipeline will help improve clean energy access” said the Prime Minister
The Prime Minister said that efforts are on to prepare for the country’s future energy needs. To achieve this goal, natural gas is being focussed upon on the one hand, energy resources are being diversified on the other hand. He illustrated the point with examples of the proposed world’s biggest renewable energy plant in Gujarat and stress on biofuels. He informed the audience that sincere work is on for getting ethanol from rice and sugarcane. Goal of ethanol blending in petrol upto 20 per cent in 10 years has been set. The Prime Minister said that the Government is committed to provide every citizen affordable, pollution-free fuel and electricity.