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November 29, 2019

Sindh unveils country’s first waste-to-fuel transport project

Business

November 29, 2019

KARACHI: Sindh government on Thursday unveiled the Karachi Breeze Red Line Project, at an estimated cost of Rs78.384 billion, to run its 213 bus fleet on biomethane fuel produced from animal waste.

The first of its kind project would provide transport services for 300,000 people on a daily basis, a statement said.

Feasibility and design for the biogas project was presented at a national conference organised by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in collaboration with the government of Sindh, UN Green Climate Fund (GCF), Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, and the Agence Francaise de Developpement (AFD)- all financiers of the Karachi Red Line BRT project.

According to the feasibility study, the Karachi Red Line BRT would have its own dedicated biogas plant located in the Landhi Cattle Colony, where 2,000 tons of cattle waste would be used to produce 60,000 Nm3 per day of biogas.

The biogas plant would deliver 11 tons per day of compressed biomethane gas (CBG) to the bus fleet, increasing to 17 tons over the life of the BRT line as demand increases.

ADB Country Director for Pakistan Xiaohong Yang said most jobs and employment opportunities were located in the urban economies. Road congestion were costing Asian economies an estimated two to five percent of gross domestic product (GDP) every year due to lost time and higher transport costs.

“One of the biggest challenges being faced by Karachi, like any other urban city of Asia, is maintaining vital economic growth while ensuring quality of life and livability standards. The Karachi Red Line BRT, and especially the biogas project, is part of ADB's vision to transform Karachi into a competitive, equitable, and environmentally sustainable urban centre.”

Sindh Minister for Energy Imtiaz Ahmed Shaikh said the Red Line project was the world's first transport project to receive $48 million funding from UN Green Climate Fund due to its use of an innovative and environment-friendly fuel resource.

“The Red Line will not only solve the city's mobility issues by providing a more reliable, safe and inclusive transportation system: it will also make bus transport more cost-effective and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improving the current pollution of the city,” he added.

Federal Minister and Adviser to Prime Minister for Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam reiterated that climate change remained a top priority for the federal government to support the prime minister's vision to make Pakistan a clean and green country.

“Sindh has taken an important initiative to reduce the effects of climate change, and any initiative with such potential should be encouraged and replicated across the country,” he added.

Sindh Planning and Development Department’s Chairperson Naheed Durrani said the project provides the first professional manure handling and waste management facility for Landhi cattle colony. It would take half of this manure and provide a facility for the safe treatment of dead livestock in its first phase.

“Red Line BRT and biogas will contribute to support Pakistan's Vision 2025, which aims to transform urban areas into creative, eco-friendly and sustainable cities through improved city governance, effective urban planning, efficient local mobility, infrastructure and better security to make urbanisation an important driver of growth,” she added.