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What is Ethanol?
1. Ethanol, an anhydrous ethyl alcohol having chemical formula of C2H5OH, can be produced from sugarcane, maize, wheat, etc. which are having high starch content.
2. In India, ethanol is mainly produced from sugarcane molasses by fermentation process.
3. Ethanol can be mixed with gasoline to form different blends.
4. As the ethanol molecule contains oxygen, it allows the engine to more completely combust the fuel, resulting in fewer emissions and thereby reducing the occurrence of environmental pollution.
5. Since ethanol is produced from plants that harness the power of the sun, ethanol is also considered as renewable fuel.

What is Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) Programme?
6. launched in January 2003.
7. The Programme sought
a. to promote the use of alternative and environment friendly fuels and
b. to reduce import dependency for energy requirements.
8. Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas (MoP&NG) vide its notification dated 20th September 2006 directed the Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) to sell 5% Ethanol Blended Petrol subject to commercial viability as per Bureau of Indian Standards specifications in notified 20 States and 4 UTs with effect from 1st November 2006.
9. The OMCs are to procure ethanol from domestic sources.
10. Government has notified administered price of ethanol since 2014.
11. Government has reduced the GST rate on ethanol meant for EBP Programme from 18% to 5%.
12. Fuel Blending: Blending of Bio-fuels extracted from various sources like Sugarcane molasses, Jatropha seeds and other agricultural wastes with pure form of Petrol or diesel is called Fuel Blending.