EDEN IAS

ETHANOL BLENDING TARGET IN PETROL

UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS | INDIA ACHIEVED 10% ETHANOL BLENDING TARGET IN PETROL | 07TH JUNE | THE HINDU

SYLLABUS SECTION: GS III (ECONOMY)

WHY IN THE NEWS?

  • India has achieved the target of blending 10 percent Ethanol Blending Target in Petrol five months ahead of schedule.
  • The original target for 10% ethanol blending in petrol was November 2022.
  • The government has also set the target of 20% ethanol blending (also called as E20) in petrol by 2025.
  • It is a major accomplishment; blending was hardly 1.5% in 2013-14 and 5% in 2019-20.

NATIONAL BIOFUEL POLICY:

  • The National Biofuel Policy, introduced in 2018 aims at reducing the dependence on imports by relying on fuel blending.
  • With bioethanol, biodiesel, and bio CNG main fuels in focus, it includes the Ethanol Blending Programme.
  • Ethanol Blending: An ethanol blend is defined as a blended motor fuel containing ethyl alcohol that is at least 99% pure, derived from agricultural products, and blended exclusively with gasoline.
  • It also talks about the production of second-generation ethanol (derived from forest and agricultural residues).
  • This will help in increasing the capacity to produce fuel additives, R&D in feedstock, which is the starting material for ethanol production, and financial incentives for achieving these goals.

SIGNIFICANCE OF ETHANOL BLENDING:

  • Saving Foreign Exchange: The immense benefits can accrue to the country by 20% ethanol blending by 2025, such as saving Rs 30,000 crore of foreign exchange per year.
  • Energy security:
  • Lower carbon emissions: Combustion of ethanol made from biomass is considered atmospheric carbon-neutral because as the biomass grows, it absorbs CO2, which may offset the CO2 produced when the ethanol is burned.
  • Better air quality
  • Self-reliance
  • Use of damaged food grains
  • Increasing farmers’ incomes: Profitable for farmers, helps in doubling farmers’ income, and is also beneficial for sugar mills.
  • Employment generation:
  • Greater investment opportunities
MEASURES TAKEN BY THE GOVERNMENT TO IMPROVE ETHANOL BLENDING:
  • The government is encouraging sugar mills and distilleries to enhance their distillation capacities for which Government is facilitating them to avail loans from banks for which interest subvention up to 6% is being borne by Government.
  • The Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas (MoPNG) has amended the Motor Spirit & High-Speed Diesel (Regulation of Supply, Distribution & Prevention of Malpractices) Order, 2005 by permitting the direct sale of Bio-ethanol (E100).

The government has fixed remunerative prices of ethanol from maize and rice.

ETHANOL BLENDING TARGET IN PETROL

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