BSIV Emission Norms and Evaluation of Alternative Fuels

BSIV Emission Norms and Evaluation of Alternative Fuels

Question: Recently, the Government has announced that BSIV emission norms will soon be followed throughout India by 2017. What is the BS IV Emission Norm? Evaluate alternative fuels which can be used in place of petrol and diesel?

BSIV: Overview

BS-4 or BS-IV emission norms stand for Bharat Stage 4

• These are set of norms/rues for permissible vehicular emission levels for various categories of automobiles such as commercial vehicles, passenger vehicles, light duty vehicle, heavy duty vehicle and so on.

• BSIV was first implemented in 2010 in select Indian cities namely NCR Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Pune, Surat, Kanpur and Agra.

• BSIV complaint engines were introduced by many companies

• Euro norms are followed under the label Bharat stage norms in India

• Euro norms delineate the maximal limit of pollutants which can be emitted by vehicles

• BS1 was implemented in 2000, BSII in 2005, BSIII in 2010 nationwide

• BSIV is to be implemented in 2017 nationwide as per the Saumitra Commission

Evaluation of Alternative Fuels

Alternative fuels are ideal for reducing petrol and diesel consumption.


-Readily biodegradable in all types of environment
- It can be used for internal combustion engines
- It can be used in blend with petrol or on its own


- Methanol is highly toxic for humans
- As little as 10 ml pure methanol can lead to permanent blindness
- Pure methanol is corrosive for engine and fuel lines
- Methanol fire hazards are difficult to detect because methanol burns with invisible flame



- An organic solvent, ethanol burns more cleanly and completely than traditional fuels
- It can also be used for blending programmes
- 5% Ethanol blended petrol is used in most states


- Ethanol is expensive

Hydrogen Fuel


- It is a enduring source of energy


- Cost of hydrogen pipeline is 15 times more expensive than many other alternative fuels such as CNG
- Hydrogen burns with a difficult to detect flame so leakage is a problem
- There are only 200 hydrogen refilling stations across the world



- It emits less pollutants and does not generate carcinogens such as benzene
- It is used commonly by buses and cars in metros like Delhi quite easily


- Price difference is not much
- There are lack of CNG filling stations in India

Facts and Stats
• BEE/Bureau of energy efficiency places labels on vehicles to show their fuel efficiency.

• Existing PUC system has loopholes which computerisation can solve

• NGT recently banned 10 year old diesel and 15 year old petrol vehicles from plying the streets of capital city Delhi

• Government has argued that vehicle’s efficiency and not its age should be the criteria for regulation
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