Emerging Energy Paradigm in Asia with Special Reference to India
Asia not only holds the distinction of being the most populous continent on the planet but also the manufacturing hub of the world. Further, the region is witnessing a rapid growth in its energy demand led by China and India that is consequently shifting the center of gravity of the world’s energy appetite towards it. Such tectonic realignments create challenges towards meeting energy supply, energy security, and environmental commitments. These contrasting elements add a unique dimension to the energy outlook of the region, highlighting the paradox of its fossil fuel–dependence getting colluded with its aspirations to move towards a green energy mix.
According to the World Energy Outlook 2021, from a current consumption of 13.3 million barrels per day (mbd), China’s demand is going to increase to 15.4 mbd by 2030. India on the other hand, consuming 5% of the world’s total oil demand in 2020 with 4.4 mbd, is heading towards 7.2 mbd oil consumption by 2030. The dominant share of China and India in the global CO2 footprint (37.8% in 2020) highlights an urgent need for innovative interventions in the fuels and lubricants space.
This paper would highlight the Asian preparedness towards efficiency enhancement, enabling technological interventions leading to cleaner use of fuels and lubricants, product differentiation for enhancing octane and cetane numbers, improving fuel combustion characteristics and countering exhaust emissions. Further, the role of alternative fuels will also be discussed in detail, with a special focus towards their role in meeting the climate change targets.
The Indian reference would include the initiatives by the Government of India in enhancing the use of ethanol-blended gasoline, plugging the supply side challenges, the status of the indigenous technology landscape for 2G and 3G ethanol production, biodiesel production through used cooking oil and plans for enhancing the use of compressed biogas for mobility applications.
A special reference will also be made to the differentiated combo fuel and lubricant offerings developed by Indian Oil Corp. to address the energy challenge through enhanced engine efficiency. The impact of these green packages on the fuel economy and engine emissions following legislative testing protocols will be discussed in detail.
This presentation will also cover the opportunities available for integrating renewable energy with the oil and gas companies and the strategies for coherent existence in the emerging era of e-mobility.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr. SSV Ramakumar is director, Research & Development and Planning & Business Development, on the Board of Indian Oil Corporation Ltd., a Fortune 500 company. Dr. Ramakumar, has more than three decades of uninterrupted experience in the downstream hydrocarbons sector, notably in areas of lubricant technology, refinery process research and catalyst development. He is instrumental in the development of India’s home-grown, OEM-approved marine lubricant technology, which catapulted IndianOil’s SERVO lubricants into a select league of five MNCs. He spearheaded the complete indigenization of IndianOil’s flagship INDMAX technology. Currently he is pioneering various alternative energy programmes including waste energy, bio, solar and energy storage. Dr. Ramakumar is steering the IndianOil Hydrogen endeavours and is on various committees working on drawing the strategies for the inclusion of hydrogen in the energy mix. Dr. Ramakumar has over 150 research publications in national and international journals and a sizable number of granted patents. In his additional assignment as director, Planning & Business Development, he is also spearheading IndianOil’s Petrochemicals, Natural Gas, Exploration & Production, Alternate Energy & Sustainable Development, International Business and Explosives verticals, besides Corporate Planning.
Besides serving on the Board of IndianOil, Dr. Ramakumar is also on the boards of LanzaTech, USA, Green Gas Ltd., which is engaged in the City Gas Distribution (CGD) business in four Geographical Areas (GAs); IndianOil Total Pvt. Ltd., which is engaged in the Bitumen Derivative business; IOT Biogas Pvt. Ltd., which is engaged in the biofuel business; IndOil Montney Ltd., which handles IndianOil’s upstream business in Canada; Oil Industry Development Board, India; Central Pollution Control Board, India; Society for Petroleum Laboratories & India Energy Forum and Research Advisory Board (RAB) of ICAT, under the Scientific & Research Organisation (SIRO). He also presides over several national scientific societies, including International Council of Internal Combustion Engines, India Chapter; Indian Society of Fuels and Lubricants; National Lubricating Grease Institute, Indian Chapter; and Tribology Society of India. He also spearheads Start-Up initiatives of IndianOil.
Dr. Ramakumar who recently has been conferred with the Fellowship of the National Academy of Engineering has received many awards, including NPMP, FIPI, NRDC, AIIMA Innovation, Bangalore Nano, and WPC Excellence Award for product and process technologies he developed. He holds a doctorate in chemistry from IIT-Roorkee (erstwhile University of Roorkee) and has been conferred with its Distinguished Alumni Award for the year 2021 in Technology & Innovation domains.