The National Policy on Biofuels-2018 notified on 8.6.2018, inter-alia, allows production of ethanol from damaged food grains like wheat, broken rice etc. which are unfit for human consumption. The policy also allows conversion of surplus quantities of food grains to ethanol, based on the approval of National Biofuel Coordination Committee, the information was given by the Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan in the Lok Sabha.
Use of damaged foodgrains and surplus foodgrains for production of ethanol will increase its availability for Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) Programme. During the ethanol supply year 2017-18, 150.5 crore litres of ethanol was blended in Petrol which resulted in foreign exchange impact of about Rs. 5070 crore and carbon emission reduced to the extent of 29.94 lakh tonnes.
The National Policy on Biofuels-2018 approved by the Government envisages an indicative target of 20% blending of ethanol in petrol and 5% blending of bio-diesel in diesel by 2030. Under EBP programme, ethanol blending in petrol is being undertaken by the Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) in whole country except island Union Territory (UT) of Andaman Nicobar and Lakshadweep wherein, OMCs blend up to 10% ethanol in petrol under the EBP Programme.
Further, Government has approved Pradhan Mantri JI-VAN Yojana to provide Viability Gap Funding (VGF) to Second Generation bio-ethanol manufacturing projects to increase availability of ethanol for EBP programme. Ministry has also issued Gazette Notification dated 1.5.2019 on “Guidelines for sale of Biodiesel for blending with high speed diesel for transportation purposes-2019” dated 30.4.2019.
Government has decided to leapfrog directly to BS-VI quality w.e.f. 1st April, 2020 in the entire country. Considering the rise in environmental pollution in National Capital Region, Government has started supply of BS-VI auto fuel in National Capital Territory of Delhi from 1st April, 2018.
Further, in line with the directions issued by Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, supply of BS-VI auto fuel has started in ten districts of National Capital Region and three other districts/cities outside of National Capital Region (Karauli, Dhaulpur and city of Agra) w.e.f. 1st April, 2019.