:: Technical --- ID :: 17734
Align type-approval norms for retro-fitment of LPG/CNG kits with European laws: Industry
Align type-approval norms for retro-fitment of LPG/CNG kits with European laws: Industry

Align type-approval norms for retro-fitment of LPG/CNG kits with European laws: Industry

New Delhi: The Auto LPG industry has sought alignment of India's type-approval norms for retro-fitment of LPG/CNG kits in automobiles with European standards, saying the prevalent norms were a major impediment to clean air goal. India Auto LPG Coalition, the apex body of autogas sellers in India, has written to Dinesh Tyagi, Director International Centre for Automotive Technology, saying irrational type-approval norms regulating aftermarket retro fitment is the biggest impediment to the growth of eco-friendly automotive fuels Auto LPG and CNG, according to a statement by the association.

It urged Tyagi, who is chairman of the committee deliberating on type-approval requirements in India, to consider the sector's collective appeal and align type approval norms for retro-fitment of LPG/CNG kits with European standards.

"The prevalent norms are a major impediment to India's clean air goals as they hamper the growth of the retro-fitment market and prevent vehicle conversions to clean fuels," the body said.

In his letter to Tyagi, IAC Director-General Suyash Gupta has termed unreasonable type-approval norms as a huge detriment to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of promoting environment-friendly cleaner gaseous fuels in transportation.

"You are aware that owing to the existing India specific type-approval/COP requirements for LPG/CNG conversion kits, the number of players in the industry has shrunk by almost 90 per cent which is seriously affecting the growth of cleaner gaseous fuels like LPG and CNG.

"Apparently, some vested interests in industry want to introduce unique India specific rules, a significant departure from established norms of alignment with UN ECE/EU Directives as are being followed for OEMs, thus killing the retro fitment industry altogether," Gupta said.

He sought type approval/COP norms in retro-fitment of LPG/CNG kits to be aligned with applicable UNECE/EU norms.

Copies of the letter were also marked to Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari.

Indian Auto LPG Coalition has long been pressing for reform of India's adverse type-approval norms to allow the retro-fitment and vehicle conversion industry to flourish.

The current Ministry of Road Transport and Highways norms require manufacturers to renew extremely cost-prohibitive Type Approvals for Auto LPG and CNG conversion kits every three years.

This practice is in the complete variance of established global norms in vogue for the last several decades.

"Approval of an LPG retrofit system essentially means the approval of the type of retrofit system to be installed in motor vehicles for the use of LPG. When approved, it can be placed on the market and can be sold for an unlimited amount of time, unless requirements change," the association said.

It said LPG is the most widely used alternative fuel in the world, with a proven track record of bringing an improvement in air quality.

The global consumption of Auto LPG has risen by over 40 per cent over the past 10 years, fuelled by environmental concerns.

"Auto LPG is one of the cleanest alternatives to petrol and diesel. Two of the most damaging agents impacting human health - NOx and PM with major origins in vehicular pollution - have near-zero emissions from auto LPG," it said adding auto LPG is also much cheaper as compared to petrol and diesel.

The Economic Times 11-09-2020