Biofuels Current Affairs

International Conference on Sustainable Biofuels 2018 held in New Delhi

The two day international conference on Sustainable Biofuels was held in New Delhi. It was jointly being organized by Department of Biotechnology and Biofuture platform.

It aimed to provide common platform to Government policy makers, industry, investors and research community to exchange experiences and challenges related to development and scaling of advance biofuels. It also focused on concerns of private sectors to speed up large scale production of sustainable biofuels.

Key Facts

The conference also aimed to provide clear understanding of development in bio-economy made by participating countries, increase awareness of policy makers about challenges faced by industry-investor for commercial scale up of advanced biofuels.

It also provided common platform to experts and delegates from 19 countries including representatives from mission innovation member countries in Sustainable Biofuels sector to take stock of current knowledge, share information and best practices, and build consensus on the actions most needed to move forward.

Mission Innovation

Department of Biotechnology (DBT) under Ministry of Science & Technology is nodal agency coordinating and steering activities of Mission Innovation (MI) in India.  Mission Innovation India unit was set-up in 2017 by DBT at ICGEB, New Delhi. DBT has lead in ushering R&D in advanced biofuels and has set up four large Bioenergy Research Centres.

DBT also has established Sustainable Biofuel Innovation Challenge (SBIC) under MI. It aims to accelerate research, development and deployment of low cost, high GHG impacting advanced biofuels. It will build on existing knowledge of individual participating countries and international institutes like IEA, IRENA and in collaboration of Biofuture Platform coordinated by Brazil as program Secretariat. The aim of this cooperation is to avoid duplication of efforts and define clear areas of collaboration for speeding up of innovations in this area.


Consultative Workshop on New National Policy on Biofuels held in New Delhi

The Union Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas had organised a consultative workshop on New National Policy on Biofuels & Pradhan Mantri Ji- Van Yojana (VGF for 2nd Generation Ethanol Bio Refineries) in New Delhi.

The workshop was organised for promoting Biofuels with objective to reduce dependency on import of crude oil, savings in foreign exchange, provide better remuneration for farmers and address growing environment concerns in the light of India’s Commitment at COP 21.

Key Facts

During the workshop 5 Working Groups on 1-G (first Generation) Ethanol (Biofuels), 2-G Ethanol, Biodiesel, Municipal Solid Wastes (MSW) to Fuel & Bio-CNG deliberated issues related to their segment in detail and came up with many constructive suggestions and inputs. These Working Groups comprised of all the stakeholders (producers, bankers and buyers).

1-G and 2-G Ethanol, Biodiesel, MSW to Fuel and Bio-CNG together with Methanol (DME) have huge potential in augmenting economic growth, generating employment and doubling farmers’ income. This will be instrumental in achieving the target of 10% oil import reduction by 2022.


Biofuel is defined as any fuel whose energy is obtained through process of biological carbon fixation. It can be characterized on basis of their source biomass.

Generations of Biofuels

  • 1G Biofuel: They produced directly from food crops such as wheat and sugar etc.
  • 2G Biofuel: hey are produced from marginal croplands unsuitable for food production or non-food crops. For example-Jatropha. It overcomes over food vs. fuel debate in first generation biofuel.
  • 3G Biofuels: It is based on improvements on production of biomass by taking advantage of specially engineered energy crops such as algae as its energy source.
  • These engineered energy crops can be cultured to act as low-cost, high-energy and entirely renewable feedstock. They have potential to produce more energy per acre than conventional crops.