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Farmers to be 'urja daata' as demand for ethanol to grow in India: Gadkari

The ethanol industry is a boon for farmers. The demand for ethanol will grow in the country. It will change the agriculture economy of India

Nitin Gadkari (Photo: PTI)

Nitin Gadkari (Photo: PTI)

Press Trust of India New Delhi

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Increased demand for ethanol for blending with petrol and diesel will change the agriculture economy of India making farmers "urja daata", Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Tuesday while launching the world's first BS 6 (stage II) electrified flex fuel-based vehicle, which can run on ethanol blends of beyond 20 per cent.
Compared to the higher contribution of the manufacturing and services sectors, the agriculture and allied industry's contribution to India's GDP is only 12 per cent while 65 per cent of the population is dependent on agriculture, the minister for road transport and highways said.
The ethanol industry is a boon for farmers. The demand for ethanol will grow in the country. It will change the agriculture economy of India.
"Our farmers will not only just be ann daata (food giver) but urja daata (energy provider)," he said.
Gadkari exuded confidence that with the demand for ethanol, the share of agriculture to the GDP will also grow. "I am very happy that the day the economy of ethanol will touch Rs 2 lakh crore that day agricultural growth rate which is 12 per cent will grow to 20 per cent," he said.
Successful tests for alternative fuels have been conducted in generator sets, vehicles, aircraft etc, the minister noted.
Gadkari also informed that neighbouring Bangladesh has requested India to supply petrol blended with ethanol.
"Today's development is a boon for farmers. I thank the management of Toyota Kirloskar for developing the technology which will help reduce pollution in the country and create job opportunities in the agriculture sector. I request to make more models on flex engines. I want motorcycles, e-rickshaws, auto rickshaws, cars to be 100 per cent ethanol," Gadkari said.
Developed by Toyota Kirloskar, the prototype of the electrified flex fuel vehicle has been built-on the Innova Hycross model and designed to be compatible with India's higher emission norms.
Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas Hardeep Singh Puri said that India, in 2014, was blending ethanol only to the extent of 1.53 per cent. It has increased by over 8 times to reach the blending of around 11.5 per cent (March 2023). This has not only helped make big savings in the import bill but also contributed to lowering carbon emissions.
"We have advanced the target for E20 blending to 2025 from the original plan of 2030 and I am very happy to note that with the strong efforts made by all the stakeholders, we will achieve this.
"Currently, E20 fuel is being dispensed at more than 3,300 fuel stations across the country and shall be available pan India by April 2025. With E20 implementation by April 2025, expected import bill savings may be around Rs. 35,000 crore annually, oil import displacement will be 63 million barrels of gasoline (in EY 2024-25)," he said.
On the prototype, he said this initiative is important as it introduces the world's first BS 6 (StageII) Electrified Flex Fuel Vehicle prototype, which has both the flex fuel engine as well as an electric powertrain, thereby offering higher use of ethanol combined with better fuel efficiencies.
Masakazu Yoshimura, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer of Toyota Kirloskar Motor, said this achievement underscores TKM's steadfastness towards shaping a carbon-neutral mobility society in line with the Government of India's initiatives by adopting multiple pathways.
"We continue to evaluate and introduce cleaner technologies that suit the local eco-system, considering the local energy mix, infrastructure readiness, and consumer acceptance so that the reduction in usage of fossil fuel & carbon emissions can be achieved at scale and faster pace.
"As a responsible corporate citizen, we stand resolute in our efforts to contribute to a greener and more self-reliant future of India," he said.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Aug 29 2023 | 7:05 PM IST

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