South Africa has finalised its long-awaited biofuel blending regulatory framework, which will be presented to Cabinet for approval before the end of March, reports Creamer Media Engineering News.

“The biofuels policy is aimed at reducing carbon emissions from fossil fuel resources like crude oil. We anticipate that the use of biofuels will results in less greenhouse-gasemissions and other pollutants common within conventional fossil fuels,” according to a speech by energy minister Jeff Radebe, read by Department of Energy chief director of energy planning Thabang Audat at a conference in Cape Town on 1 October.

Radebe’s speech said he had asked his department to complete all outstanding activities relating to the finalisation of the biofuel blending regulatory framework, in support of the establishment and development of the emerging biofuelsindustry in South Africa.

Audat explained further that the government was keen to introduce certainty about biofuels.

“We want oil companies to allow for our local farmers to farm biofuel products to blend into the main fuel to make it cleaner. We are targeting 2% of the country’s fuel consumption needs,” Audat told delegates at the conference. “This amounts to about 400,000 litres.”

Radebe said the regulatory framework had three pillars. The first was the mandatory purchase of biofuels by licensed petroleum manufacturers in accordance with the Mandatory Blending Regulation of Biofuels with Petrol and Diesel, which came into effect in October 2015.

The second pillar was the Biofuels Feedstock Protocol, which would regulate and approve biofuels feedstock plans in a way that did not compromise food security and prioritised rain-fed crop production. Thirdly, it would publish standards for biofuels in transport fuel, as well as fuel specifications for the blended fuel.