E85 might become available in Belgium
The production capacity of bio-ethanol needed for the introduction of E85 should not be a problem. “The current production capacity in Belgium is 200 million liters per year. It can be increased to 500 million,” says Hendrik Lemahieu of the Belgian Bioethanol Association (BBA).
E85 is gaining popularity in France, where it is about half the price of petrol. While the installation of a bio-ethanol density measuring device and a 20% higher fuel consumption add to the costs, the low price of E85 could represent a significant cost advantage in the long term.
The rise of super ethanol will not happen without petrol producers. “The sector is not opposed to E85, but it isn’t the requesting party either,” Petroleum Federation spokesman Jean-Benoît Schrans warns. Ethanol is already present in petrol at a 10% part.
“Europe wants to limit the contribution in the transport sector of biofuels produced using foodstuff. By 2020, a maximum of 7% first-generation biofuels, like ethanol, should be used. E85, therefore, by far exceeds that limit,” according to the petroleum federation.