Vizag tank to keep India all fuelled up


Union petroleum minister S. Jaipal Reddy on Monday said that a massive underground strategic oil storage facility is being built in the port city of Visakhapatnam to help India tide over international crises that may affect fuel supply to the country.

The facility will be completed in four months, Reddy said.

“Around 13 lakh tonnes of petroleum res-erves can be stored in the cavern which can support the country’s fuel needs for 90 days during any global eventuality,” he said.

The government is setting up massive oil storage facilities in underground rock caverns at Mangalore in Karnataka and at Vizag. These would be in addition to the existing stores of crude oil and petroleum products with the oil companies and will provide an emergency response in case of short-term supply disruptions during any global crises.

“I was there at the cavern yesterday and it was a spectacular sight. I was overwhelmed to see such a massive underground storage which is as tall as a 10-storey building. I wish to be in Vizag again within three to four months to commission it,” said Reddy.

The minister was in Vizag to dedicate HPCL’s Clean Fuels Project to the nation. The project, costing Rs 2,200 crores, would be useful in producing Euro IV standard fuel.

Vizag already houses an underground facility to store LPG, the first of its kind in Southeast Asia. A joint-venture of HPCL with oil major TOTAL of France, the Cavern Marine Terminal can hold 60,000 million tonnes of LPG storage. Built at the cost of Rs 333.3 crore, the LPG facility was completed in 2007.

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