Biofuel Policy

Used Cooking oil as aviation fuel


Mains Paper 2: Governance | Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: RUCO Initiative

Mains level: Harnessing edible oils for biofuel production


  • Our household used cooking oil could help fly a jet in the near future.
  • Scientists have successfully tested the conversion of used edible oil into Bio-ATF
  • The CSIR-Indian Institute of Petroleum is looking for partners to commercialise the technology.

Cooking Oil as Bio-ATF

  • The Dehradun-based Indian Institute of Petroleum has successfully finished a pilot test to convert used cooking oil into bio-aviation turbine fuel (Bio-ATF).
  • The used cooking oil can be blended with conventional ATF and used as aircraft fuel.
  • The Institute collected used cooking oil from caterers and hotels in Dehradun for the pilot, which has now set the platform for commercial use of the technology.
  • The chemical composition of the used cooking oil is identical to other plant-based oils that have been converted to Bio-ATF.

Up for a fight test

  • The Bio-ATF derived from used cooking oil is yet to be tested on a flight.
  • The pilot test has proven that it is very similar to Bio-ATF derived from Jatropha oil.
  • A large quantity of Bio-ATF is needed for testing on an actual flight.

On lines with RUCO

  • The test assumes importance as the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has launched the Repurpose Cooking Oil (RUCO) initiative to collect and convert used cooking oil into bio-fuel.
  • As many as 64 companies in 101 locations across the country have been identified for the purpose by FSSAI.
  • The food safety body says that by 2020, it should be possible to recover about 220 crore litres of used cooking oil for conversion into bio-fuel.


RUCO Initiative

FSSAI unveils initiative to collect, convert used cooking oil into biofuel

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments