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Home News Power Sector News Methanol and not electricity should replace fuel in India by 2030, says Niti Aayog

Methanol and not electricity should replace fuel in India by 2030, says Niti Aayog

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Niti AayogNITI Aayog, the central government’s apex think tank has drafted a hybrid fuel policy that aims to challenge the relevance of the mission of the electric car furthered by both the government and automobile premiers by replacing electricity as fuel with methanol.

Methanol, which is an alternative fuel for internal combustion and other engines, is a much better alternative since electric cars are neither cost-efficient nor sustainable.

As per the policy-making body, Methanol-based hybrid vehicles would run on electricity that would be generated on board from the chemical. This would not put additional pressure on electricity demand in the country.

Besides the fact that methanol can replace gasoline owing to the fact that it is easily available, methanol also does not cause pollution and has higher electrical mobility and efficiency in addition to being highly cost-effective than electric vehicles which run on lithium-ion batteries.

An official from the Niti Aayog told The Economic Times that methanol as an alternative will reduce not only pollution but also the country’s dependence on fossil fuels.

"Lithium is not an easily available resource and the world will run out of the basic resource if all switch over to lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles. Hence, it is not a sustainable solution," the official said.

More importantly, India does not possess the expertise to make lithium-ion batteries which will lead to the country depending on China for such batteries. Since India will only be able to assemble the batteries in the country with barely 15% value addition, it can be assumed that such a move will widen the trade deficit between the two countries in China’s favour.

In addition, the move to adopt electric vehicles would require the installation of infrastructure on a massive scale which would include setting up charging stations across the country resulting in an additional burden on an already growing demand for electricity.

Suggesting a roadmap to reduce the annual oil import bill by $100 billion by 2030 through extensive use of methanol in cooking gas and transportation fuel, Niti Aayog member VK Saraswat is currently pushing methanol aggressively.

The BJP-led National Democratic Alliance government wants only cleaner vehicles to ply on India's roads by 2030 as part of its commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the global agreement on climate change and to reduce spending on oil imports, which, according to one estimate, could double to an annual $300 billion by that year.

Source- Times Now


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