Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday laid the foundation stone for the Cauvery basin refinery in Nagapattinam district and also dedicated Indian Oil Corporation’s 143-km-long natural gas pipeline from Ramanathapuram to Tuticorin to the nation through videoconferencing.
The Rs 31,580 crore refinery project being set up by Chennai Petroleum Corporation Limited (CPCL), on the premises of an existing refinery in Panangudi village, will have an annual refining capacity of 9 million tonnes.
br>Completed at a cost of Rs 700 crore, the pipeline project will transport natural gas from ONGC gas fields in Ramanathapuram as feedstock to petrochemical and fertilizer industries in Tuticorin. Officials said the pipeline with a capacity of 8 million metric standard cubic metre a day has a compressor station at Valantharavai village in Ramanathapuram district. The pipeline is part of the mega natural gas pipeline project being implemented in the states of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Puducherry.
Chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami who was present at Tuticorin said the project will offer a new lifeline for industrial development in the region. “The project will open new opportunity for many new industries in the region. They will have a multiplier effect in Tamil Nadu where the new industrial policy and MSME policy were released yesterday," he said.
The 1,445-km-long Ennore - Thiruvallur - Bengaluru - Puducherry - Nagapattinam - Madurai - Tuticorin natural gas pipeline is being established to evacuate gas from the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) import terminal at Kamarajar port in Thiruvallur district that has a capacity of 5 million metric tonnes per annum. The Ramanathapuram - Tuticorin pipeline will be connected to Ennore LNG terminal to meet the increased demand and to feed potential anchor customers to spur industrial growth in the southern part of the country. It will also supply environment friendly piped natural gas to households in the form of CNG.
While farmers of villages like Pottalkadu in Tuticorin district strongly protested the laying of pipelines through their fields, officials said the pipelines are farmer-friendly as cultivation can continue without any restriction and the ownership of the land remains with them.
The proposed refinery at Nagapattinam will produce petrol, diesel, and polypropylene and will general about 50 lakh man-days during its execution phase. it would directly employ 600 people and 1,000 indirectly, official sources said. The area required for the Cauvery basin refinery is about 1,350 acres, of which the company has about 650 acres. The remaining land is under acquisition, official sources said.