INDIA ETHANOL MARKET
Ethanol (ethyl alcohol, grain alcohol) is a clear, colourless liquid with a characteristic, agreeable odour. In dilute aqueous solution, it has a somewhat sweet flavour, but in more concentrated solutions it has a burning taste. Ethanol, CH3CH2OH, is an alcohol, a group of chemical compounds whose molecules contain a hydroxyl group, –OH, bonded to a carbon atom.
The ethanol produced by fermentation ranges in concentration from a few percent up to about 14 percent. Above about 14 percent, ethanol destroys the zymase enzyme and fermentation stops. Ethanol is normally concentrated by distillation of aqueous solutions, but the composition of the vapor from aqueous ethanol is 96 percent ethanol and 4 percent water.
Therefore, pure ethanol cannot be obtained by distillation. Commercial ethanol contains 95 percent by volume of ethanol and 5 percent of water. Dehydrating agents can be used to remove the remaining water and produce absolute ethanol. Much ethanol not intended for drinking is now made synthetically, either from acetaldehyde made from acetylene, or from ethylene made from petroleum.
Ethanol can be oxidized to form first acetaldehyde and then acetic acid. It can be dehydrated to form ether. Butadiene, used in making synthetic rubber, may be made from ethanol, as can chloroform and many other organic chemicals. Ethanol is used as an automotive fuel by itself and can be mixed with gasoline to form gasohol.
It is useful as a solvent for many substances and in making perfumes, paints, lacquer, and explosives. Alcoholic solutions of non-volatile substances are called tinctures; if the solute is volatile, the solution is called a spirit. Most industrial ethanol is denatured to prevent its use as a beverage.
INDIA ETHANOL MARKET DYNAMICS
Ethanol has recently been implemented as an additive within the fuel requirements of the country as part of increasing the indigenised effort towards petroleum products and thereby fuel production and usage for vehicular propulsion.
India has recently allocated about 78,000 tonnes of rice from Food Corporation of India (FCI) stocks at a subsidised rate of Rs 20 per kg to distilleries for ethanol production for the ethanol supply year (ESY) 2020-21. This has been one of the major requirements in the ethanol production and maintaining the required production market and dynamics.
India in the present scenario has the grain-based distillery capacity for ethanol production of about 258 crore litres and that is already committed to production of alcohol-based products. India has also the capability to supply about 38 crore litres of ethanol this year as part of increased technological advancements in the production as compared to the production capacity of 19 crore litres the previous year.
Currently, 8.5 percent of ethanol is blended with petrol in India. In order to introduce vehicles that are compatible the committee recommends roll out of E20 material-compliant and E10 engine-tuned vehicles from April 2023 and production of E20-tuned engine vehicles from April 2025. This recommendation has been achieved through the roadmap for Ethanol Blending in India, which proposes a gradual rollout of ethanol-blended fuel to achieve E10 fuel supply by April 2022 and phased rollout of E20 from April 2023 to April 2025.
India runs the EBP Programme aimed at achieving multiple outcomes such as reducing import dependency, conserving foreign exchange, reducing carbon emissions and providing a boost to the agriculture sector. However, low availability and State specific issues continued to hinder the progress of EBP Programme at desired level.
To increase indigenous production of ethanol the Government, took multiple interventions including, Reintroduction of administered price mechanism, Opening of alternate route for ethanol production, Regular Interaction with the State Governments, Amendment to Industries (Development & Regulation) Act, 1951 which legislates exclusive control of denatured ethanol by the Central Government, Reduction in Goods & Service Tax (GST) on ethanol meant for EBP Programme from 18% to 5%.
INDIA ETHANOL MARKET SEGMENTATION
The India Ethanol market can be segmented into following categories for further analysis.
By Class of Vehicle Usage
- Passenger Cars
- Heavy and Medium Commercial Vehicles
- 2 Wheelers
- 3 Wheelers
- Off the Road Vehicles
By Product Manufacturing Process
- Natural Extraction Process
- Synthetic Extraction Process
- Microbiological Process
- Converted / indirect Extraction process
By Generation of Ethanol
- Sugar and Molasses Based
- Grain Based
- First Generation
- Second Generation
- Denatured Ethanol
- Undenatured Ethanol
- Vehicular Usage / Automotive
- Commercial Usage
- Residential usage
- Fuel and Fuel Additives
- Personal Care
- Industrial Solvents
By Regional Classification
- Western Region – India
- Eastern Region – India
- Southern Region – India
- Northern Region – India
RECENT MARKET TECHNOLOGICAL TRENDS IN INDIA ETHANOL MARKET
The availability of conventional biofuels i.e.1G ethanol and palm Stearin/ non-edible oil seeds-based biodiesel is limited. With the recent initiatives such as widening of feedstock base for ethanol production, scheme of augmenting capacity and exploring Used Cooking Oil (UCO) for Biodiesel production.
Therefore, the thrust is being given to Advanced Biofuels such as Second Generation (2G) Ethanol, BioCNG/ Compressed BioGas (CBG), UCO based biodiesel etc. which can be sourced from wastes such as crop residues, Biomass, industrial waste, sewage water etc. and are abundantly available in the Country. These products would change the usage statistics and conventional structuring of the ethanol usage and blending as part of various product formations.
Today ethanol is produced from a variety of sugar and starch-bearing feedstocks for use as an industrial chemical, beverages, alcohol, and fuel ethanol. Fuel ethanol technology has been developed through extensive research and development in more than a decade.
Conventional processes have been improved while advances continue to be made in lignocellulosic biomass conversion. Advanced technologies in Fermentation, Distillation, and wastewater treatment have been developed through consistent efforts and understanding of process details as well as effective plant design.
The Research and Development at extensive stages has produced the latest technology of including and placing feedstocks of various alternate categories within the production requirements. The LCB Methodology of production has been of major importance in these aspects. This methodology uses the Agri and Forest Waste Abundantly available in nature to produce the required production volumes of ethanol.
Alongside these there has been extensive usage of MSW within the production requirements as part of recent developments for the ethanol production at the preliminary stages. The basic raw material has been changed to maize in recent days.
Conversion of corn kernel fiber fraction to ethanol and identification and development of new and higher value coproducts. Many processes are employed like quick fiber , quick germ, COPE process , enzymatic milling, dry grind and wet milling. Both dry grind and wet milling processes are popular now-a-days but most of the ethanol is produced by dry grind method only because it is less capital and energy intensive.
Considering the growth factors of India’s ethanol generation capability and other emerging companies as part of technological improvements in ethanol production through various raw materials has been placing a major competition on the localized scale.
The Godavari Biorefineries Ltd had recently started improvising its technology and thereby increasing its production capability at various levels within the requirements. The company has started the manufacturing of Biofuels through its expansion project which is being undertaken by Praj India Limited.
The expansion capacity at GBL plant will continue to be a zero liquid discharge facility. The expansion will maintain zero liquid discharge norms by deploying innovative technology i.e. SHIFT, developed in Praj Industries’ R&D facility – Praj Matrix. The ‘SHIFT’ technology minimizes energy and water footprint, while maximizing value for customers.
HPCL biofuels operates various ethanol dedicated plants within its installation facilities across the country at various volumetric requirements. The ethanol plant uses state of the art technology to ensure optimum output & lowest energy & input consumptions. It includes continuous fermentation, multi pressure distillation & molecular sieve technologies, which are considered to be the latest in the ethanol industry. Evaporation technology is used to reduce the spent wash generation in order to reduce pollution.
Bio-methanation plant reduces BOD / COD levels & generates biogas for use as fuel into co-gen power plant boilers. Bio-compost equipment is used to treat the spent wash generated from the ethanol plant and the compost fertilizer thus produced is sold to the farmers in the command area while ensuring zero effluent discharge.