CHINA plans to use bioethanol gasoline nationwide by 2020, the National Development and Reform Commission and National Energy Administration (NEA) said yesterday.
“The plan was unveiled as the country is pushing the use of biofuel, which is renewable, applicable, tech-savvy and environmentally-friendly. It is an ideal alternative to fossil fuel,” a senior NEA official said.
Ethanol fuel, known as E10, is 10 percent of ethanol. It is commonly used worldwide since it is believed to cut carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide emissions and help ease the energy supply bottleneck.
More than 40 countries and regions consume about 600 million tons of ethanol fuel every year, accounting for around 60 percent of the world’s annual gasoline use.
China is the world’s third-largest bioethanol producer and uses nearly 2.6 million tons a year. Gasoline blended with ethanol accounts for one-fifth of its annual gasoline consumption.
According to the plan, China aims to build an advanced liquid biofuel system and put into operation a demonstration facility that will be able to produce 50,000 tons of cellulosic ethanol a year by 2020.
China launched corn-to-ethanol pilot programs in 2004 as part of efforts to cut emissions and advance new energy.
China banned the use of grain for ethanol production in 2007 to ensure sufficient food supply, and biofuel manufacturers have since turned to sweet potatoes, sorghum and straw stalks instead.
The country later lifted the ban in 11 provinces including Jilin, Liaoning and Heilongjiang provinces in the northeast, Henan and Hebei provinces in the north, Anhui, Shandong and Jiangsu provinces in the east, the central province of Hubei, and Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region in the southwest.