‘Methanol Economy’ Programme

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‘Methanol Economy’ Programme

‘Methanol Economy’ Programme

Recently a ‘Methanol Economy program’ has been released by NITI Aayog.

The objective of this program is to reduce India’s oil import expenditure and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Also, coal reserves and municipal solid waste are to be converted into methanol.

Advantages of Methanol Economy

Environmentally friendly

  • Adding methanol 15 (ml) to petrol will reduce pollution by 33 percent. Also, replacing diesel with methanol will reduce air pollution by more than 80 percent.
  • Methanol is combusted efficiently in all internal combustion engines.

It is cheaper than petrol and diesel as well as ethanol. With the help of this, India can reduce the expenditure on fuel by 30 percent by the year 2030.

It has a wide range of applications including the transportation sector, home cooking fuels and fuel cells.

This requires very little modification to the existing engines (vehicles) and fuel delivery infrastructure.

NITI Aayog’s Road Map for Methanol Economy

  • Using Indian High Ash coal, Stranded gas, and Biomass can produce 20MT of methanol annually by 2025.
  • The Methanol Economy Research Program (MERP) is being conducted by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) for production of methanol from various sources.
  • These sources include carbon dioxide emitted from Indian coal and thermal power and steel plants etc.
  • DST also launched its Methanol and Dimethyl Ether (DME) program in the year 2015.

Source – PIB

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