Older diesel tractors can be converted to Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) based tractors, resulting in significant savings for farmers with the official launch of a CNG-based tractor conversion kit. Farmers can also benefit from converting their older diesel-powered tractors to CNG-powered vehicles at a time when the country is considering a policy for scrapping vehicles.
Central Minister for Road Transport Nitin Gadkari mentioned this at a conference, adding that he had converted his own tractor for this pilot project, that resulted in huge savings.
All those who convert their diesel tractors to CNG-based tractors by retrofit will definitely benefit by steadily increasing life. The emission standards of these tractors are so better in comparison with diesel tractors that they will certainly pass the fitness test,” Gadkari had replied to a query. He further said that cotton and rice straw could also be used to produce CNG.
Pilot project of the proposal
‘This conversion of tractors from diesel to CNG is a pilot project in India and with some imported components from an Italian based company,’ Gadkari stated. He again added that there is scope for all busses and tractors to run on bio-NGC, a raw material that can be obtained from farmers. The cost of such conversion kits for commercial use is being worked out and he hopes to reduce them on the basis of larger volumes and additional native Indian inputs.
‘In the meantime, Karnataka’s Minister of Mines Murugesh R Nirani has said they are looking to purchase 500 such conversion kits to convert older diesel-powered tractors. ‘We’re trying to negotiate the price of such conversion kits with different companies,’ he said.
The Minister for Petroleum, Dharmendra Pradhan said that they will soon be able to sell Compressed Bio Gas through retail stores.
The use of such tractors all across country may be limited by the availability of CNG, although a number of cities and states, such as Gujarat, Lucknow, Indore, may find buyers.