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Study of Available Business Models of Biomass Gasification Power Projects in India

As an agrarian economy, a major segment of the population in India depends on agriculture. Thus, biomass in the form of agricultural residue is available in all parts of the country. Fuel can be transported, stored, and used the entire year. This study argues that biomass presents an ideal solution for powering all parts of the country, in particular rural areas, with highest efficiency.

This study looks at different business models of gasification-based biomass power generation projects that are currently in operation in India. A strong social vision with a focus on rural development and a mission to bring electricity to poor rural households has been a common and underlined feature that binds all these organisations together. Case studies presented have been characterized on the basis of the following criteria: 1) Off Grid, 2) Grid Connected, 3) Captive.

The study has identified a number of barriers such as financing of power projects, technology customisation, biomass resource management, tariff structure, and lack of  government policies on biomass, that need to be overcome, for the further replication of these business models and up-scaling of biomass power projects. The study concludes that the government should make efforts to create a conducive environment for biomass power projects ranging from policy framework to market development in order to ensure that entrepreneurs can come up with larger plant capacities, both in grid and off grid mode.