Supported by G20 countries and organisations like IAE, ICAO, WEF, World LPG Foundation and on the sidelines of the latest G20 meeting at New Delhi, the Global Biofuels Alliance was announced, bringing together biofuel producers and consumers with the intent to strengthen global biofuels trade for a greener sustainable future! To ensure energy security, affordability, and accessibility for the future, the GBA will facilitate global collaboration, supporting the development and deployment of sustainable biofuels. 

According to G20 Biofuels Study report, biofuels account for 0 to 7 per cent of  G20 country’s energy mix. GBA will help raise awareness of biofuels’ vital role in greenhouse gas reduction. It drives global sustainable biofuel development, aids national programs, shares policy insights, builds capacity, reshapes perception, and boosts global trade. It will help promote best practices for efficient, cost-effective, and sustainable feedstock use. Ensure a stable supply of eco-fuels and create a virtual marketplace connecting industries, countries, and tech providers, enhancing demand-supply mapping. 

What is the biofuel alliance launched in the G20 all about? 

The Global Biofuels Alliance (GBA) announcement was made by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 9, 2023, on the sidelines of the G20 Summit held in New Delhi. It is an initiative to develop an alliance of governments, international organisations and industry to facilitate adoption of biofuels by bringing together the biggest consumers and producers of biofuels and positioning  biofuels as a key to energy transition. It is also expected to contribute to job creation and economic growth. 

What is it trying to achieve? 

GBA will support global development and deployment of sustainable biofuels by offering capacity-building exercises across the value chain, technical support for national programs and promoting policy lessons-sharing. It will facilitate mobilising a virtual marketplace to assist industries, countries, eco-system players and key stakeholders in mapping demand and supply, as well as connecting technology providers to end users. It will also work on developing, adopting and implementing internationally recognised standards, codes, sustainability principles and regulations to incentivise biofuels adoption and trade. The mandate is also to support research and advocacy for improvements in biofuel technology across supply chains, expand the range of sustainable feedstock and convert feedstock to biofuels. 

Why have the US, India and Brazil led this project? Which are the other countries which are part of this project? 

Nineteen countries and 12 international organisations have already agreed to join the GBA. 

Seven G20 member countries support GBA: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, India, Italy, South Africa, and the USA have joined . Four G20 invitee countries, Bangladesh, Singapore, Mauritius, and UAE support it. 

Eight non-G20 countries are also supporting GBA. Iceland, Kenya, Guyana, Paraguay, Seychelles, Sri Lanka, Uganda, and Finland are the countries. And 12 international organisations such as World Bank, Asian Development Bank, World Economic Forum, World LPG Organization, UN Energy for All, UNIDO, Biofutures Platform, International Civil Aviation Organization, International Energy Agency, International Energy Forum, International Renewable Energy Agency, World Biogas Association are supporting. 

GBA Members constitute major producers and consumers of biofuels, such as the USA (52 per cent), Brazil (30 per cent) and India (3 per cent), contributing about 85 per cent share in production and about 81 per cent in consumption of ethanol. 

Will this alliance help India in achieving its target? 

This will help India become the voice of the global south by getting countries which are still to start their biofuels programme. For India, it will provide additional opportunities to its industries by exporting technology and equipment. It will help accelerate India’s existing biofuel programmes such as – PM-JIVANYojna, SATAT, and GOBARdhan scheme -- thereby contributing to increased farmers’ income, creating jobs and overall development of the Indian eco-system. 

What is the stance of Saudi Arabia, Russia and other oil producers regarding this group? 

Major oil companies are tapping the clean energy space. Both Saudi Arabia and Russia are part of G20 and are committed to accelerating clean, sustainable, just, affordable and inclusive energy transitions following various pathways as a means of enabling strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth and achieving the climate objectives.