According to Deccan Herald, Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) introduced the country’s first biobus which will run on 100% biodiesel, on Monday. Transport Minister Ramalinga Reddy flagged off the biobus. This bus will operate between Bengaluru and Chennai. In an effort to reduce emissions and release of greenhouse gases by state-owned buses and to enhance revenue of the state, the transport department is keen to run more buses on biodiesel. A litre of biodiesel is cheaper by Rs 5 than regular diesel. The four state-run transport corporations – KSRTC, BMTC, NEKRTC and NWKRTC need close to 5.43 lakh kilolitres of diesel a year. KSRTC alone consumes around 2.1 lakh kilolitres.
The department plans to add 10 more to its fleet in the coming days. The department said, using bio-diesel will significantly help reduce emissions. “We have launched this as pilot project. We want to increase more in our fleet in the coming days. There will be less emissions and it will contribute to a greener environment,” said the state Transport Minister, reported News 18.
“In diesel vehicles you can see lot of smoke emanating. But when bio-diesel is used there isn’t much smoke. It doesn’t even affect the performance,” a bus driver said. The State Road Transport departments across the country, collectively operate about 1.50 lakh buses and serve 7 crore passengers every day. This is three times higher than Indian Railways.
Nearly 300 crore litres of diesel is used every year. Apart from reducing pollution, saving on fuel can turn around the finances of the transport department. “This is a pilot project but we are planning to extend it to 17,000 buses (17 depots). We have enough fuel for operations. This is the first time in the country that such an initiative has been taken,” Rajender Kumar Kataria, Managing Director of KSRTC, said.