Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserve at Visakhapatnam, Mangalore and Padur (near Udupi)
Government of India had decided to set up Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserve of about 5 million metric tons (MMT) of strategic crude oil storages at three locations namely, Visakhapatnam, Mangalore and Padur (near Udupi).
Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserve – Highlights
These strategic storages would be in addition to the existing storages of crude oil and petroleum products with the oil companies and would serve as a cushion during any external supply disruptions.
The construction of the Strategic Crude Oil Storage facilities is being managed by Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves Limited (ISPRL), a Special Purpose Vehicle, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Oil Industry Development Board (OIDB) under the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas.
The crude oil storages are constructed in underground rock caverns and are located on the East and West coast of India.
Crude oil from these caverns can be supplied to the Indian Refineries either through pipelines or through a combination of pipelines and ships.
Underground rock caverns are considered the safest means of storing hydrocarbons.
Advantages of underground storages include:
• Product storage is located at a depth and is fully isolated
• Principle of containment ensures no leakage and contamination
• Safest and environment friendly means of storage
• Safety hazards viz. sabotage, earthquakes, explosions are minimized
• External fires do not affect storage inventory Energy Security Mandate oil in large underground storage installations forms a key imperative.
In addition to the long term interventions; the short-term measure that offers immediate resilience to supply disruption of crude oil is the “Strategic Petroleum Reserves (SPRs).
Underground Storage Alternatives for Hydrocarbons
• Surface land requirement is low compared to conventional above ground (A/G) Storage
• Economical for a large storage capacity of about 1.0 MMT
Design life of U/G storage is longer than A/G storage relatively
Construction cost & operating cost is lesser than A/G storage
Principle of underground oil storage
• Oil is lighter than water
• Oil is insoluble in water