Skip to main content

Methyl Alcohol

Volume 979: debated on Wednesday 20 February 1980

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

asked the Secretary of State for Energy, on the basis of methyl alcohol derived from natural gas or coal, to what extent it would be economic to use it as a petrol extender and octane improver; and at what price of crude oil the break-even point is likely to be reached.

At current market prices and on a thermal equivalent basis, the use of methanol (ie methyl alcohol-currently made from natural gas) is about 20 per cent more expensive as a petrol extender than the motor spirit from natural crude it replaces. The use of methanol as an octane improver is similarly uneconomic when compared to conventional improvers.It is estimated that on current coal prices, methanol from coal would not be competitive as a petrol extender until natural crude oil rose to about $40 to $50 per barrel.