Biofuel Policy

Cabinet approves Petroleum Ministry joining of IEA Bioenergy TCP


Mains Paper 3: Environment | Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: IEA Bioenergy TCP

Mains level: Various initiatives for waste to energy conversions


  • The Union Cabinet has approved the joining of Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas to International Energy Agency’s Bioenergy Technology Collaboration Programme as its 25th member.
  • The other members are Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Republic of Korea, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK, the US, and the EU.

Harnessing bioenergy sources

  • Bioenergy is renewable energy made available from materials derived from biological sources.
  • Biomass is any organic material which has stored sunlight in the form of chemical energy.
  • As a fuel it may include wood, wood waste, straw, and other crop residues, manure, sugarcane, and many other by-products from a variety of agricultural processes.

About the TCP

  • Bioenergy TCP is an international platform for co-operation among countries with the aim of improving cooperation and information exchange between countries that have national programmes in bioenergy research, development and deployment.
  • IEA Bioenergy TCP works under the framework of International Energy Agency (IEA) to which India has “Association” status since 30 March 2017.

Why join the TCP?

  • The primary goal of joining is to facilitate the market introduction of advanced biofuels with an aim to bring down emissions and reduce crude imports.
  • Benefits of participation in TCP are shared costs and pooled technical resources.
  • It also provides a platform for policy analysis with a focus on overcoming the environmental, institutional, technological, social, ‘and market barriers to the near-and long-term deployment of bioenergy technologies.

Tasks under TCP

  • The R&D work in IEA Bioenergy TCP is carried out carried out within well-defined 3-years programmes called “Tasks”.
  • Each year the progress of the Tasks is evaluated and scrutinized and each 3 years the content of the Tasks is reformulated and new Tasks can be initiated.
  • Technical persons from Public sector Oil Marketing companies will also be contributor in the Tasks participated by MoP&NG.

General Benefits

  • The benefits of participation in IEA Bioenergy TCP are shared costs and pooled technical resources.
  • The duplication of efforts is avoided and national Research and Development capabilities are strengthened.
  • There is an information exchange about best practices, network of researchers and linking research with practical implementation.

Benefits for India

  • Engagement with International Agencies will also apprise the Ministry of the developments taking place Worldwide in Biofuel sector, provide opportunity of personal interaction with innovators/ Researchers and help in bringing suitable policy ecosystem.
  • In addition, after becoming member, India can participate in other related Tasks focussing on Biogas, Solid waste Management, Biorefining etc. which could be participated by relevant Ministries/ Departments/ Organizations of the Country.
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