Ethanol Current Affairs
The foundation stone of India’s first 2G (Second Generation) Ethanol Bio-refinery was laid at Tarkhanwala village in Bathinda, Punjab.
Central Government Public Sector Undertaking (CPSU) Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) is setting up this project at a cost of 600 crore Rupees.
- HPCL’s bio-refinery will produce 100 kilolitres of ethanol per day i.e. 3.20 crore litres per annum from agricultural residues.
- It will be sufficient to meet the 26% of the ethanol blending requirement of Punjab. It will also produce about 30,000 tonnes of bio-fertiliser per annum to enhance soil nutrients.
- It will also produce more than 1 lakh kilograms of Bio-CNG per annum which can cater to transport and clean cooking requirements.
- It will generate employment for about 1,200-1,300 persons in the biomass supply chain. It will also generate an additional income of approximately 20 crore Rupees per annum for farmers through purchase of their agriculture residues.
- The project will also significantly help in reducing CO2 emissions from the paddy straw which currently is being burnt after harvesting.
HPCL and other state-run oil firms are planning to set up 12 2G ethanol bio-refineries across 11 states at an estimated cost of 10,000 crore Rupees. These Bio-refineries will be significantly contributing towards the Ethanol Blending Programme (EBP) for achieving 10% Ethanol Blending in Petrol from current 5% by producing around 35-40 crore litres of ethanol annually. Read more
About 2nd generation ethanol
2nd generation ethanol is a fuel that can be manufactured from various types of biomass. Whereas 1st generation ethanol is made from the sugars and vegetable oils found in arable crops, which can be easily extracted using conventional technology. In comparison, 2nd generation ethanol is made from lignocellulosic biomass or woody crops, agricultural residues or waste, which makes it harder to extract the required fuel using conventional technology.
The Union Government has decided to invest 15,000 crore rupees to increase the capacity of Panipat refinery in Haryana to 25 Million Tonnes from existing 15 Million Tonnes.
It was announced by Union Minister of State (MoS) for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Dharmendra Pradhan at a function in Panipat.
- The expansion of Panipat refinery will help raise specifications of fuel quality from BS-IV to BS-VI to meet future demand.
- It will also create employment opportunities for the people and also help in raising quality of fuel in the country by the year 2020.
- Besides, Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) will also set up bio-ethanol plant in Panipat to generate alternative fuel from agricultural residue which would boost agriculture sector.
What is Bioethanol?
- It is an alcohol derived by process of fermentation mostly from carbohydrates of agricultural residue and feedstocks.
- As a quasi-renewable energy, ethonal can be blended with petrol or diesel making it a sustainable transport fuel. It will help to reducing emissions and dependency on imported fuel.
Benefits of bio-ethanol plant
Help in solving the chronic problem of straw burning of leftover agro-based produce especially from wheat and rice feedstocks. Benefit farmers economically, as they would be paid for their agro-based produce to extract bio-ethanol. It would also help in preventing the loss of fertility of soil and damage to environment by reducing air pollution.