PMF IAS Test Series for UPSC Prelims Banner Ad
PMF IAS Test Series for UPSC Prelims Banner Ad

Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) Programme

  • Context (IE | TH): After banning sugar exports, the Centre has taken the next step towards augmenting domestic availability, i.e., restricting the diversion of the sweetener for ethanol production.

What is Ethanol (C2H5OH)?

  • Ethanol is 99.9% pure alcohol.
  • It can be used as a biofuel.
  • It is naturally produced by the fermentation of sugars by yeasts.
  • It is also produced via petrochemical processes such as ethylene hydration.
  • It is mostly extracted from molasses (byproduct from refining sugarcane) and surplus food grains.

Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP)

  • EBP was launched in 2003 with a 5% blending of ethanol in petrol.
  • It has a target of 20% ethanol blending in petrol by 2025-26.

Objectives of EBP

  • Reducing import dependence
  • Savings in foreign exchange
  • Providing a boost to the domestic agriculture sector and associated environmental benefits

Advantages of using EBP

  • Energy security in the long run through fuel mix diversification.
  • Reduce the use of fossil fuels.
  • Reduce import dependence and self-sustainability in fuel production.
  • Doubling Farmers’ income by farm diversification (Ashok Dalwai Committee).
  • Optimum utilisation of surplus food grains and damaged vegetables.
  • Reduction in pollution as EBP is more efficient and clean than normal petrol.
  • Employment generation through the introduction of new technology and infrastructure.
  • Byproducts like potash can be used as fertilisers, and other wastes can be used as animal feed.


  • Uncertainty in the production of molasses and food grains, as agriculture in India, is mostly affected by the vagaries of nature.
  • Policy Challenges: For instance, the current ban on the production of ethanol using sugar cane.
  • Diversion of food grains: This can threaten food security.
  • Poor mileage of vehicles: Since the energy content of ethanol is as low as 35% when compared with petrol.
  • Constraints of infrastructure, advanced technology and skilled human resources.

Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) Programme

  • The EBP programme was launched in 2003 with multiple objectives, including:
    • Reducing import dependence
    • Savings in foreign exchange
    • Providing a boost to the domestic agriculture sector
    • Associated environmental benefits.
  • Under EBP, India aims to blend 20% ethanol in petrol (E20) by 2025.

Way Forward

  • Gear up State-wide support to eliminate regional disparity in production.
  • Feedstock diversification: Food grains have a better yield capacity to produce ethanol than molasses.
  • Single Window Clearance to eliminate approval hurdles.
  • Upgradation of vehicles for ethanol compatibility and improved efficiency.
Sharing is Caring !!

Newsletter Updates

Subscribe to our newsletter and never miss an important update!

Assured Discounts on our New Products!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Never miss an important update!