Guatemala: Reform of Law on Alcohol Fuel

Advisors of the U.S. Embassy and experts in renewable energy and gasoline additives advise legislation on mixing gasoline and ethanol and eliminating the additives MMT and MTB.

Friday, May 2, 2014

From a statement issued by the Congress of the Republic of Guatemala:

Energy Commission discusses feasibility of blending ethanol fuels

30/04/2014

The members of the Committee on Energy and Mines at the Congress of the Republic, coordinated by Congressman Gustavo Medrano, received representatives of the U.S. Embassy in Guatemala, accompanied by experts in renewable energy and gasoline additives, who raised the need to reform Decree 17-85 "Alcohol Fuel Act," which establishes the regulations for marketing fuels in the country.

"The scenarios have changed drastically and Decree 17-85 no longer meets the current needs of the hydrocarbons market," said engineer Shane Hang, Economic Officer at the U.S. Embassy, ​​who also called on Congress to repeal or alter this Law, so that in Guatemala fuel can be mixed with Ethanol (derived from sugar cane) and the additives MMT and MTB, which are harmful to cars and the environment, be eliminated.

"This measure will help reduce environmental pollution rates among other benefits. Guatemala currently produces 300,000 liters of ethanol a year, but due to lack of regulation it has to be exported to Europe, where it is used, while in Brazil it is being used even as fuel," said Dr. Silvia Palma Rojas from the University of Brasil.

Congressman Gustavo Medrano said that the reforms are considered necessary, but first there must be a profound socialization Iinitiative with stakeholders, in order for it to get to the Chamber and be approved without major obstacles. "Therefore we will resume discussion of these reforms in the Legislative Committee, where we hope to reach a satisfactory result," said the parliamentarian.

The meeting was also attended by: Ruben Contreras of the Organization of American States (OAS), Geronimo Estrada Southwest Research Institute, San Antonio, Texas, and Ruth Urry, Diplomatic Official from the American Embassy.



More on this topic

Changes to Biofuels Law in Honduras

May 2014

The recently passed amendment to the law defines as a priority the use and import of raw materials for the production of biofuels and provides a new price for electricity generated from forest biomass.

LAW FOR THE PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTION OF BIOFUEL

"ARTICLE 12 -. Raw materials and biomass for biofuel production and domestic biofuels have priority for use over imported raw materials, biomass or biofuels in market conditions.

Use of Ethanol Promoted in Guatemala

April 2013

Authorities are pushing for a pilot plan to blend ethanol in gasoline used by vehicles.

The signing of this agreement is being pushed by the Department of Sustainable Development at the Organization of American States (OAS). According to Ruben Contreras, representative of the entity, the country has a mature ethanol industry and this will also help clean up the environment.

Biofuel Project Reactivated

July 2012

The Ministry of Energy and Mines in Guatemala is going to create an internal committee in order to study the possibilities of using plant-based fuels.

The law which enables the use of ethanol blended with gasoline has been paralyzed since 2008 in the Guatemalan Congress and the administration of Perez Molina has proposed reviving the project, by means of a ministerial commission that will analyze "the environmental and socioeconomic impact that such a fuel modification could have and what the potential use of biofuels in the local market is."

Guatemalan Sugar Producers Export Biofuels

May 2009

In 2008, 265 million liters of ethanol and alcohol manufactured from sugar cane were exported to Europe and the United States.

Biofuel production generates additional income for sugar producers in Guatemala, which could be a palliative in the face of the economic crisis, according to comments from Fraterno Vila, president of the Sugar Association of Guatemala (ASAZGUA), in an article in Sigloxxi.com.

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