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PM Modi launches Global Biofuel Alliance, calls for 20% ethanol blending with petrol

NewsPM Modi launches Global Biofuel Alliance, calls for 20% ethanol blending with petrol

India is targeting to become carbon neutral by 2070 and is expanding the use of biofuel in its transport sector.


India continued playing its “global leader” role on the first day of the G20 Summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi launching the Global Biofuel Alliance (GBA) on Saturday aimed at facilitating cooperation and intensifying the use of sustainable biofuels, including in the transportation sector, and technology transfer for production of biofuels. He also called upon the 20-nation grouping to raise the ethanol blending with petrol to 20%.

It was a proud moment of India’s G20 presidency as Modi announced the creation of the alliance with a plea for working towards 20% blending of ethanol or developing another blending mix that ensures a cut in emissions and stablises energy supply.

“The need of the hour is to work together in the field of fuel blending… India invites all of you to join this initiative,” said the Prime Minister.

The GBA may help the country cut its dependence on imported fuel and pave the way for allowing biofuel exports and trading. US President Joe Biden, President of Brazil Luiz Inacio, President of Argentina, Alberto Fernández and Prime Minister of Italy Giorgia Meloni were present when the Prime Minister announced the launch of the global alliance. Nineteen countries have agreed to stand with India as initiating members of the Global Biofuels Alliance. India is the third largest oil importer and New Delhi has been regularly pointing to the rising prices of crude oil and seeking a curb on production cuts by OPEC that lead to a spike in global oil prices. In FY23, the Indian import of crude and petroleum products jumped 29.5% to $209.57 billion. India imports about 85% of its crude needs and is gradually building capacity to increase its output of biofuels.

The ministry of petroleum later said in a post on X, “Joining forces for a cleaner future! Hon’ble @PMOIndia Sh @narendramodi launched the Global Biofuels Alliance during #G20Summit along with leaders from G20 & invitee countries. Ensuring #Sustainability with Socio economic benefits for all #GlobalBIOfuelsAllianceAtG20”

Data from International Energy Agency (IEA) shows that to achieve zero emissions by 2050 the worldwide output of biofuel should be tripled by 2030. Under the biofuel alliance India, Brazil and the US, shall place emphasis on strengthening markets, facilitating global biofuels trade, developing concrete policy lesson-sharing and providing technical support for national biofuels programmes worldwide. The Alliance shall work in collaboration with and complement the relevant existing regional and international agencies as well as initiatives in the bioenergy, bioeconomy, and energy transition fields more broadly, including the Clean Energy Ministerial Biofuture Platform, the Mission Innovation Bioenergy initiatives, and the Global Bioenergy Partnership (GBEP).

Earlier, petroleum minister Hardeep Singh Puri had said in a post on X that he discussed advantages of the alliance, which has received strong global support on accelerating progress on SDGS and Global biofuel. It will focus on facilitating cooperation with sharing of best practices and raising awareness on benefits of sustainable biofuels.

India plans to build 12 bio-refineries to produce fuel from items including crop stubble, plant waste and municipal solid waste. GBA will be a competent organisation that will set technical standards for Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) business in collaboration with relevant industry bodies. The alliance will have a three-category membership structure bringing together member countries, partner organisations and industries.

The alliance will work towards enhancing global collaboration and cooperation for the accelerated adoption of biofuels by identifying global best practices for the development and deployment of sustainable biofuels and bioproducts. India is targeting to become carbon neutral by 2070 and is expanding the use of biofuel in its transport sector. It has advanced the deadline by five years to 2025 for doubling nationwide ethanol blending in gasoline to 20%.

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