Biofuel is the answer to avoid dark future

Debate on fuel security versus food security has taken centre stage

He was delivering the inaugural address at the two-day workshop for writers organised by the Karnataka State Biofuel Development Board (KSBDB) at the Abdul
Nazir Sab Rural Development Institute here on Sunday.

Hegde said instead of falling at the feet of oil rich countries, India should start to empower people from rural areas and bring them to the main stage by improving awareness among them about the importance of biofuel, which can be obtained by growing plants such as ‘honge’ and neem.

Message not reaching ryots

However, he bemoaned information necessary for farmers is not reaching them.
Earlier, programmes on radio and Doordarshan used to dole out information about best practises to farmers. But, now the advent of hundreds of channels has caused farmers to watch soaps rather than informative programmes.

Describing the problems that would arise if petrol wasn’t available for one week, Hegde said the consequences would be similar to the damage caused by war or a tsunami.’

As the country is aiming to become a developed nation, the dependence on petroleum products is also increasing. People should introspect if we should continue to live such a dependent life on oil, he added. He said each person should be productive and be independent.

Speaking about other alternate fuel sources, he said nuclear energy is being touted to cater to the future demand, but the enormous damage it causes has already been seen.

Solar energy has a good future, but it can’t be used for vehicles. Even windmill are facing a lot of restrictions due to concerns raised by wildlife experts.

Similary, mini and micro hydel power projects are facing stiff resistance as they would damage the eco-sensitive Western Ghats. Due to these constraints, biofuel emerges as the natural choice among alternate fuels.

Addressing the participants, KSBDB managing director A K Monnappa said the debate on fuel security versus food security has begun to take centre stage across the world.
The world is completely dependent on fossil fuels and experts estimate that it would be depleted within the next 20 years.

KSBDB executive chairman Y B Ramakrishna, Balakrishna Gowda, Prof Udupi Srinivas and others were present.

Price to be fixed for honge

KSBDB managing director A K Monnappa said the Commission for Agriculture Costs and Prices (CACP) has invited the board for discussion on fixing the prices of products used for biofuel such as honge. He said this would provide the shot in the arm for farmers growing honge.

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