Understanding India’s ethanol blending policy
The Union Cabinet approved amendments to the National Policy on Biofuels, 2018, to advance the date by which fuel companies have to increase the percentage of ethanol in petrol to 20%, from 2030 to 2025. The policy of introducing 20% ethanol is expected to take effect from April 1, 2023.
What is the history of ethanol-blending in India?
- Since 2001, India has tested the feasibility of ethanol-blended petrol whereby 5% ethanol blended petrol (95% petrol-5% ethanol) was supplied to retail outlets.
- In 2002, India launched the Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) Programme and began selling 5% ethanol blended petrol in nine States and four Union Territories that was extended to twenty States and four UTs in 2006. Until 2013-14, however, the percentage of blending never crossed 1.5%.
- Since 2020, India has been announcing its intent to achieve 10% blending by the end of 2022 and 20% blending by 2030. The Centre has also targeted 5% blending of biodiesel with diesel by 2030.