Vijay C Roy
Today News Online Service
Chandigarh, April 28
Amid Covid crisis, almost 98 per cent of the oxygen generated by the industry in the state for industrial purposes is being diverted to hospitals. The state has 15 air separation units (ASUs) with a generation capacity of around 60-65 tonnes per day. The remaining capacity is being utilised by pharmaceutical units.
According to industry associations, the daily requirement of oxygen by the industry and hospitals during pre-Covid days was 300-350 tonnes per day. “Since the capacity of local ASUs was limited to 60-65 tonnes per day, a bulk of the demand was met from outside the state such as Baddi, Panipat, Dehradun and Roorkee, so we were more dependent on other states for oxygen,” said RS Sachdeva, managing director, Hi Tech Industries. Currently, the use of oxygen for non-medical purposes is not permitted.
As an important compound, oxygen is used by industry such as steel-makers, fabrication, pharmaceutical industry and water purification. Steel-makers in Mandi Gobindgarh account for major consumption followed by Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Mohali and Dera Bassi. In addition to the industry, there are a few Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) medical oxygen generation in government hospitals and private hospitals which cater to part of their demands.
On an average, the requirement of hospitals was 50-60 tonnes per day during pre-Covid days which has shot upto 250 tonnes now. The daily consumption as per the present caseload for Covid patients is around 200 MT as on April 25, and around 50 MT for non-Covid patients (emergency and other essential requirements that cannot be stopped). This makes the total daily requirement/consumption for Punjab healthcare services of 250 MT of liquid medical oxygen. Currently, out of the total demand, the state would get 165 tonnes from outside the state.
On an average, the requirement of hospitals was 50-60 tonnes per day during pre-Covid days which has shot upto 250 tonnes.