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Zimbabwe Motorists Weigh Advantages of Ethanol Fuel

  • Tatenda Gumbo

Proponents of ethanol-blended fuel have continued to assure motorists of the safety of the E-10 blend in all vehicles as the government says the use of blended fuel is now mandatory.

Green Fuel, a company sub contracted by the government to supply the country with ethanol blended fuel, has also assured motorists of the benefits on the fuel. It said the blended fuel will have a positive impact on the environment and people’s wallets.

Green Fuel general manager Graeme Smith explained how misunderstanding of these fuels can lead to skepticism among consumers.

He said it is the responsibility of stakeholders to assist in the familiarization of the ethanol fuels for consumers in Zimbabwe.

Advocates say apart from its environmental benefits like reducing carbon emissions, bio fuels offer energy security, promote rural development, reduce poverty and create employment.

But investing in ethanol fuels has also led to habitat alteration, food insecurity, human displacements and environmental degradation, if not properly handled.

Claris Madhuku, director of the Platform for Youth Development and Chisumbanje stakeholder, said the local community is mainly interested in the interaction between villagers, Green Fuel and government.

Madhuku said villagers support the creation of ethanol fuels, but insist the company and government must have an interest in uplifting the lives of people in Chisumbanje.

Ethanol can be used as a direct replacement to gasoline if it is blended.

Motorists have expressed skepticism on the new fuel, saying they are still opting for the conventional petrol which is still available as they fear the latest blend may damage their vehicles.