Biogasoline is a renewable fuel for use in gasoline vehicles. The biogasoline physical properties are similar to those of petroleum gasoline. In the EU, near 100% of the biogasoline is bioethanol but fuels like biomethanol can be used in biogasoline as well. As a transport fuel, ethanol is used as an additive in gasoline (e.g. E5, E10) or as an alternative fuel (e.g. E85, ED95) with the E code referring to the percentage of ethanol blended in gasoline.
Bioethanol (ethyl alcohol) or simply ethanol is made by fermenting the carbohydrate components of plant materials. The most commonly used feedstocks are grains (corn, other coarse grains, and wheat kernels) and sugarcane.
Feedstocks, production and production capacity
In the EU, bioethanol is mainly produced from grains and sugar beet derivatives. Wheat is mainly used in Germany, France and the United Kingdom, while corn is predominantly used in Central Europe. An abundance of corn on the domestic market benefits production in Central Europe, in particular in Hungary. But corn is also the preferred grain in the Netherlands and Spain, where the majority of the ethanol plants are located at sea ports, and the corn is predominantly sourced from the Ukraine. In France, Germany, the United Kingdom, the Czech Republic, and Belgium sugar beets and its derivatives are also used for the production of bioethanol. Sugar beets are only processed for bioethanol in a few sugar beet processing plants in France with on-site ethanol distillation capacity. In some other MS, like Austria and Belgium, beet pulp may serve as a feedstock for ethanol production.
Total EU ethanol production capacity, for fuel, industrial and food uses, is estimated at about 9 billion liters in 2018.
In the EU, the required feedstock for 2018 production (5,5 million liters of bioethanol) is mainly from cereals, estimated at 11.7 MMT. This is about 3.9 percent of total EU cereal production.
EU bioethanol imports in 2017 were 209 million liters or less than 5% of the ethanol consumption in the EU, about 185 million liters were imported from the United States, and about 9 million liters were imported as ethyl-tert-butylether (ETBE).
(references, EU Commission, USDA GAINS report 2018)