Q.) What is ethanol blending in petrol and why it can be beneficial for India? Also, discuss the scope of Ethanol blending industries and associated challenges in Bihar.

Ans– Ethanol is ethyl alcohol and its 90% pure form is used to mix with petrol to obtain a low-cost fuel at minimal prices. Ethanol has oxygen which will help to improve combustion and reduce vehicular emission. Here we talking about Ethanol Blending. It also reduces the losses and value addition in the sugarcane industry. it will make low the burden of oil Import to India.

Currently, the Government of India is targeting 10% blending by 2022 and 20% by 2025. in this direction various state government is also planning for ethanol utilization in which the state of Bihar is the Pioneer. According to recent data present blending rate is around 3% and the 2021 budget target is 7.3%.

The sustainable ethanol content, which is a side product of the sugar industry, is supposed to bring about a net decrease in the discharge of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide (CO), and hydrocarbons (HC). This guide likewise referenced a moderate achievement of 10% mixing to be accomplished by November 2022.

Why ethanol blending is crucial for India–

  1. It’s lowered the dollar outflow and feel the energy gap of India which is dependent on imported oil for more than 80%.
  2. It will help to boost farmers’ income as India is targeting to achieve double farmer income by 2022 in its ethanol blending project. Also, in additional income to sugarcane producers and income from Waste rotten food grains or Vegetables, etc.
  3. Ethanol blending is Eco-boost because India is the third-largest power consumer and will need high energy and ethanol will also reduce CO2, CO, and methane emissions.
  4. It opens the new Arena of investment which help to attend the economic goal of 5 trillion dollars by 2025.

In India, ethanol creation is fundamentally done involving sugarcane as feedstock. Nonetheless, sugarcane creation in a guard crop year pretty much meets the necessity of the relative multitude of areas. In different years, there is a shortage because of which the EBP has not been effectively executed till now. In recent years, there was an enormous neglected interest for ethanol from the modern area that was met by imports.

Steps were taken by the government–

  1. ethanol blending policy (EBP) came in 2003- basis with aim of reducing import burden, improving their quality, and additional income to farmers.
  2. currently, it is part of the national biofuel policy 2018.
  3. the government also categorized ethanol and move forwards with R&D in ethanol efficiency.
  4. subsidy to Sugar Mills to produce ethanol.

Be that as it may, because of the organized endeavors of the Public Sector Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) the objective of 10% mixing under the program has been accomplished much in front of the designated timetables of November 2022 wherein the Public Sector OMCs have achieved a normal 10% ethanol mixing in petroleum the nation over.

To attain 20% ethanol blending by 2025 government of Bihar came up with a new ethanol production promotion policy in 2021.

Bihar aspiration to become ethanol hub–

  1. Bihar is the fifth-largest ethanol producer in India.
  2. It has large sugarcane and rice-producing area which provide the raw material for ethanol production.
  3. Currently, the state is producing 12 million tonnes of ethanol and is targeting to produce around 50 million tonnes of ethanol.

For making Bihar the ethanol hub of India–

  1. Single window clearance to set up greenfield standalone ethanol plant.
  2. BIADA provides land to the investors.
  3. Waving up on stamp duties.

But still, the state of Bihar has various challenges to attain its goal some of them are–

  1. The disintegrated supply chain of ethanol.
  2. Problem-related to land acquisition to establish ethanol plant.
  3. Sugarcane production hike to get additional benefits could hamper food security in the state.

The aspiring state of Bihar has huge potential to tap its energy generation, especially the bioenergy not only to fulfill the demand of the statement but also for the nation. so, it is high time to reform the governance structure to boost the ethanol sector.

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