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Omera LPG’s Roundtable Discussion

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Omera, the largest LPG operator in Bangladesh, reaffirms its commitment to providing environmentally friendly alternative energy solutions with a recent roundtable discussion titled “The Impact of LPG as Clean Fuel on Health and Safety.” The discussion, held at Omera’s corporate headquarters on World Day for Health and Safety, aimed to uphold the International Labor Organization’s (ILO) mission to raise awareness and advocate for safer and healthier workplaces worldwide. With the theme “Ensuring safety and health at work in a changing climate,” the discussion delved into the current growth of Bangladesh’s LPG sector, addressed regulatory hurdles faced by operators, and explored the health and safety implications of LPG.

The roundtable Chaired by Mr. Nurul Amin, Chairman of the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC), included a panel of esteemed members including Dr. MD. Helal Uddin NDC, Member GAS, BERC; Mohammad Faruque Hossain, Chief Inspector, Department of Explosives; Md Kamal Uddin Bhuiyan, BFM, Deputy Director (Operations & Maintenance) Fire Service and Civil Defense Directorate; Major (Engr.) Shamsuddin Ahmed Chowdhury (Retd), Member (Development), RAJUK; Liakat Ali Bhuiyan, Sr. Vice-President, Real Estate & Housing Association of Bangladesh (REHAB); Imran Hassan, Secretary-General, Bangladesh Restaurant Owners Association; Jahir Khan, President, Chef’s Federation of Bangladesh; HM Hakim Ali, President, Bangladesh International Hotel Association and Muhammed Ahsanul Jabbar, Secretary General, LPG Operators Association of Bangladesh (LOAB).

The meeting was moderated by Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Tanzeem Chowdhury of Omera Petroleum Limited.

During the meeting, the speakers discussed, the impact of LPG on the environment and health is profound and positive. In comparison to other fossil fuels, such as coal and oil, LPG emits significantly fewer pollutants, with CO2 emissions being 33% less than coal and 12% less than oil. Furthermore, LPG combustion does not produce smoke, making it a cleaner option for indoor and outdoor use. In terms of environmental conservation, just one metric ton of LPG can save the equivalent of 47 full-grown trees, highlighting its role in mitigating deforestation. Moreover, using LPG for heating and cooking reduces the exposure to harmful pollutants, contributing to better respiratory health compared to traditional wood-fired methods. Overall, the adoption of LPG offers a sustainable and healthier alternative for both the environment and individuals.

Responding to various allegations, the report blamed malpractices in Bangladesh’s LPG sector to factors such as cross-filling, inadequate awareness about LPG usage, misinformation in media communication, and improper design and installation of LPG systems.

In Bangladesh LPG has 3-billion-dollar investment, where private sectors have 98 percents and public sector has only 2 percents market share. Many factors act as catalysts in the development of this sector. These include- energy transition, urbanization, government initiatives, environmental concerns, ease of distribution, industrial and commercial applications etc.

During the discussion, as Chief guest Mr. Nurul Amin, Chairman of the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) stated “Once upon a time, village mothers used to be engulfed in smoke while cooking. I saw my mother’s tears in the smoke from cooking with wood. Village housewives got relief from that suffering after LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas) cylinder came. We want the use of LPG to increase at a greater rate.”

Nurul Amin said, I found the transportation and storage method of LPG to be safe during the on-site inspection. BERC announces new LPG prices in the first week of every month. As we have seen, Omera LPG cylinders are sold at BERC fixed prices. For this, I thank the Omera authorities.

BERC Chairman Nurul Amin also said that we will formulate rules and guidelines to make LPG use safe. In order to create responsibility as well as awareness in this regard. This sector has unlimited potential. So, sector-wise planning is very important.

Mentioning that there is a huge market for LPG in the country, the BERC chairman said, “Earlier we used to see fish markets in villages, later we saw tree markets. Now we see LPG market at rural level.

He announced to organize a workshop with stakeholders, businessmen and others related to the sector.

Speakers at the event said that the use of LPG cylinders in homes and commercial segment in Bangladesh has increased a lot. Consequently, caution and awareness in LPG use is more important than before. Besides, it is important for the government to pay attention to this sector with policy support.

Mohammad Faruque Hossain, chief inspector of the Directorate of Explosives, said that in many cases negative propaganda is done about LPG cylinders without knowing. In the last two and a half months, including the Bailey Road accident, three major incidents in Dhaka and Gazipur have been said to have involved cylinder explosions, but we have not found any evidence.

He Also said, as per the internation standard, it is mandatory to re-test cylinders in every ten years. Nice to know that Omera is the only one to start this initiative and established a factory for refurbishment.

Emphasizing the usage rules and warnings on each cylinder, he said that currently many operators have been given LPG licenses. These operators have numerous distributors.
He called upon the distributors to be more responsible, especially in transporting and storing LPG cylinders.

RAJUK Member (Development) Shamsuddin Ahmed Chowdhury (retd) said that RAJUK has been making separate structures for gas cylinders for a long time in building buildings. RAJUK has plans to make gas tanks in the near-future.

LOAB Secretary General Mohammad Ahsanul Jabbar said that LPG can be one of the main businesses of the country in the future. However, this industry is almost entirely dependent on imports. Only 2 percent is produced in the country. The consumption of LPG in the country has increased manifold in a decade. In 2019, the consumption increased to around 1 million tonnes and the number of customers also increased to 3.8 million. In 2009, the demand was only 47 thousand tons. The demand is expected to rise to 3 million tonnes in 2030.

According to the LPG Operators Association of Bangladesh (LOAB) forecast, LPG demand is expected to grow at an annual rate of around 7.4% till 2030. As natural gas reserves are depleting and LPG prices are fluctuating, the industrial sector is showing increasing interest in using LPG as an alternative fuel source. The average monthly market size of LPG in Bangladesh is around one and a half lakh metric tonnes. Of these, 5 operators including Omera are meeting-up more than 50 percent of the total demand.

It was informed at the event that Omera is always dedicated to sustainable solutions at all levels of the LPG sector, from individuals to households to industries. Bangladesh has already adopted LPG as a dependent fuel. Omera is therefore poised to meet the country’s growing energy needs by prioritizing health, safety and environmental sustainability.

It was also informed on the occasion that Omera is the largest LP gas operator in the country. The company is implementing various programs to improve the quality of the workers in this sector and increase the awareness of the customers as part of social responsibility along with business. These include, safety training for chefs, consumer awareness programs, safety signs, call centers aimed at providing prompt service. The company’s call center number is 16797, which is the number to get information about any service related to LPG.

In addition, Omera is conducting various activities to raise awareness to create safe and healthy workplaces globally in a changing climate. In addition, with the aim of increasing customer awareness, Omera constantly promotes awareness messages for customers through television, social media, etc.

For ensuring safety and health at work in a changing climate Omera is doing various activities to raise awareness and promote action towards creating safer and healthier workplaces globally. Omera promotes safe use of LPG guidelines to the consumers through campaigns for awareness.

Omera remains dedicated to providing competitive and sustainable energy solutions for all segments of society, from individual households to various industries. As Bangladesh continues to embrace LPG as a clean and efficient fuel, Omera stands ready to meet the evolving energy needs of the nation while prioritizing health, safety, and environmental sustainability.

Incidentally, World Day for Health and Safety at Work, which takes place each year on 28 April, promotes the prevention of occupational accidents and diseases globally. The Safety Day was first celebrated by the International Labor Organization (ILO) in 2003 and since then it has become a global celebration. The special occasion promotes the prevention of work-related accidents for both individuals and organizations. This year’s theme of the day is ‘healthy workers, decent working environment, will build smart Bangladesh’.

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