The Uttarakhand government and the Indian Institute of Petroleum (IIP) will work together to extract turpentine oil and bio-fuel from dry pine leaves, which are considered to be the main cause of forest fires in the state during summers.
The state government and IIP agreed in principle to collaborate on the project at a meeting chaired by Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat here today, an official release said.
An MoU will soon be signed between the two sides to extract turpentine oil from dry pine leaves and make bio-fuel out of its waste.
Dry pine leaves collection centres will be set up in eight hilly districts of the state -- Almora, Chamoli, Nainital, Pauri, Rudraparayag, Pithoragarh, Tehri and Uttarkashi.
Those who collect dry pine leaves will also get incentives, it added.
Terming the project as a step towards extracting the "best out of waste", the Chief Minister said it will save pine forests from catching fire during summer besides conserving Uttarakhand's rich flora and fauna.
"In the preliminary stage 40 tonnes of dry pine leaves will be required for the purpose on a daily basis which will be bought from villages and panchayats. It will generate revenue for the state government and employment opportunities for the locals.
"An oil extraction plant is proposed to be built in Sheshambada for the purpose," the release added.