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    Spanish company Ferry Group is to invest €42/US$55.2 million in a project for the production of biomass fuel pellets in Bulgaria. The 3-year project consists of establishing plantations of paulownia trees near the city of Tran. Paulownia is a fast-growing tree used for the commercial production of fuel pellets. Dnevnik - Feb. 20, 2007.

    Hungary's BHD Hõerõmû Zrt. is to build a 35 billion Forint (€138/US$182 million) commercial biomass-fired power plant with a maximum output of 49.9 MW in Szerencs (northeast Hungary). Portfolio.hu - Feb. 20, 2007.

    Tonight at 9pm, BBC Two will be showing a program on geo-engineering techniques to 'save' the planet from global warming. Five of the world's top scientists propose five radical scientific inventions which could stop climate change dead in its tracks. The ideas include: a giant sunshade in space to filter out the sun's rays and help cool us down; forests of artificial trees that would breath in carbon dioxide and stop the green house effect and a fleet futuristic yachts that will shoot salt water into the clouds thickening them and cooling the planet. BBC News - Feb. 19, 2007.

    Archer Daniels Midland, the largest U.S. ethanol producer, is planning to open a biodiesel plant in Indonesia with Wilmar International Ltd. this year and a wholly owned biodiesel plant in Brazil before July, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday. The Brazil plant is expected to be the nation's largest, the paper said. Worldwide, the company projects a fourfold rise in biodiesel production over the next five years. ADM was not immediately available to comment. Reuters - Feb. 16, 2007.

    Finnish engineering firm Pöyry Oyj has been awarded contracts by San Carlos Bioenergy Inc. to provide services for the first bioethanol plant in the Philippines. The aggregate contract value is EUR 10 million. The plant is to be build in the Province of San Carlos on the north-eastern tip of Negros Island. The plant is expected to deliver 120,000 liters/day of bioethanol and 4 MW of excess power to the grid. Kauppalehti Online - Feb. 15, 2007.

    In order to reduce fuel costs, a Mukono-based flower farm which exports to Europe, is building its own biodiesel plant, based on using Jatropha curcas seeds. It estimates the fuel will cut production costs by up to 20%. New Vision (Kampala, Uganda) - Feb. 12, 2007.

    The Tokyo Metropolitan Government has decided to use 10% biodiesel in its fleet of public buses. The world's largest city is served by the Toei Bus System, which is used by some 570,000 people daily. Digital World Tokyo - Feb. 12, 2007.

    Fearing lack of electricity supply in South Africa and a price tag on CO2, WSP Group SA is investing in a biomass power plant that will replace coal in the Letaba Citrus juicing plant which is located in Tzaneen. Mining Weekly - Feb. 8, 2007.

    In what it calls an important addition to its global R&D capabilities, Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) is to build a new bioenergy research center in Hamburg, Germany. World Grain - Feb. 5, 2007.

    EthaBlog's Henrique Oliveira interviews leading Brazilian biofuels consultant Marcelo Coelho who offers insights into the (foreign) investment dynamics in the sector, the history of Brazilian ethanol and the relationship between oil price trends and biofuels. EthaBlog - Feb. 2, 2007.

    The government of Taiwan has announced its renewable energy target: 12% of all energy should come from renewables by 2020. The plan is expected to revitalise Taiwan's agricultural sector and to boost its nascent biomass industry. China Post - Feb. 2, 2007.

    Production at Cantarell, the world's second biggest oil field, declined by 500,000 barrels or 25% last year. This virtual collapse is unfolding much faster than projections from Mexico's state-run oil giant Petroleos Mexicanos. Wall Street Journal - Jan. 30, 2007.

    Dubai-based and AIM listed Teejori Ltd. has entered into an agreement to invest €6 million to acquire a 16.7% interest in Bekon, which developed two proprietary technologies enabling dry-fermentation of biomass. Both technologies allow it to design, establish and operate biogas plants in a highly efficient way. Dry-Fermentation offers significant advantages to the existing widely used wet fermentation process of converting biomass to biogas. Ame Info - Jan. 22, 2007.

    Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited is to build a biofuel production plant in the tribal belt of Banswara, Rajasthan, India. The petroleum company has acquired 20,000 hectares of low value land in the district, which it plans to commit to growing jatropha and other biofuel crops. The company's chairman said HPCL was also looking for similar wasteland in the state of Chhattisgarh. Zee News - Jan. 15, 2007.

    The Zimbabwean national police begins planting jatropha for a pilot project that must result in a daily production of 1000 liters of biodiesel. The Herald (Harare), Via AllAfrica - Jan. 12, 2007.

    In order to meet its Kyoto obligations and to cut dependence on oil, Japan has started importing biofuels from Brazil and elsewhere. And even though the country has limited local bioenergy potential, its Agriculture Ministry will begin a search for natural resources, including farm products and their residues, that can be used to make biofuels in Japan. To this end, studies will be conducted at 900 locations nationwide over a three-year period. The Japan Times - Jan. 12, 2007.

    Chrysler's chief economist Van Jolissaint has launched an arrogant attack on "quasi-hysterical Europeans" and their attitudes to global warming, calling the Stern Review 'dubious'. The remarks illustrate the yawning gap between opinions on climate change among Europeans and Americans, but they also strengthen the view that announcements by US car makers and legislators about the development of green vehicles are nothing more than window dressing. Today, the EU announced its comprehensive energy policy for the 21st century, with climate change at the center of it. BBC News - Jan. 10, 2007.

    The new Canadian government is investing $840,000 into BioMatera Inc. a biotech company that develops industrial biopolymers (such as PHA) that have wide-scale applications in the plastics, farmaceutical and cosmetics industries. Plant-based biopolymers such as PHA are biodegradable and renewable. Government of Canada - Jan. 9, 2007.

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Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Brazil's ethanol expansion to bring 3.6 million jobs by 2010

Recently we reported about Nigeria's expectation that its cassava ethanol based biofuel program will yield 3 million direct jobs over the course of five years. A few days ago, Indonesia showed its 'millions' too and expects its green fuel program to bring in 2.5 million jobs in under three years time. Indeed, biofuels are job creation machines.

Now Brazil projects not less than 3.6 million jobs to arise out of its aggressive expansion of its sugarcane plantations, which it is currently undertaking. The country expects to more than double its annual exports of alcohol fuel, or ethanol, by 2010, Mines and Energy Minister Silas Rondeau says. Thanks to the rapid expansion of sugarcane areas, the country will export about 7.9 billion liters (2.1 billion gallons) of ethanol in 2010, up from current exports of about 3 billion liters (790 million gallons), Rondeau said at the Rio Oil and Gas Expo and Conference. [In 'barrel of oil equivalent' (boe) terms, we are talking about projected exports of roughly 100,000 boe/day].

"The potential for exports we have by 2010 is about 8 billion liters, generating about 3.6 million jobs directly and indirectly," Rondeau said in his opening remarks to the conference, which runs through Thursday.

Jobs will be created in sugar cane planting, harvesting, processing and transporting. Indirectly, the logistical sector involved in moving both raw materials, processed materials and finished goods will benefit (distribution, mixing, transmixing, storing, shipping), as well as trade, biotechnology and consultancy sectors. As always, it remains to be seen what the social and labor conditions of the workers at the bottom of the ethanol production pyramid are going to be.

Rondeau said thanks to an increase in the amount of area where sugarcane is planted Brazil's total production of ethanol is expected to rise to 26 billion liters (6.87 billion gallons) annually in 2010 up from the current production of around 16 billion liters (4.23 billion gallons) annually. [From roughly 193,000 boe/day to 313,000 boe/day].

Brazil is the world's second-biggest producer of ethanol after the United States and is the biggest exporter. Brazil also has the world's largest fleet of ethanol-powered cars _ seven out of every 10 new cars sold in Brazil are "flex fuel" vehicles that can run on gasoline, ethanol or any combination of the two. Brazil's state-run oil firm Petroleo Brasileiro SA, or Petrobras, said it expected to sign a long-term contract to export ethanol to Venezuela:
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The company's downstream director Paulo Roberto Costa said the exact volume and terms of the contract were still being discussed.

Petrobras already has made two ethanol shipments of 6.6 million gallons each to Venezuela this year, and this week is shipping another 5 million gallons, Costa said.

Earlier this year, Petrobras said it planned to export 40 million gallons of ethanol to Venezuela in 2006.

Petrobras hopes the export volume in the planned contract with Venezuela will be larger than this year's shipment.

The company this year also is making two shipments of 5 million gallons of ethanol to Nigeria, Costa said. Petrobras is in negotiations with the African country over a long-term ethanol supply contract.

Petrobras has promised Venezuela and Nigeria that it would transfer ethanol production technology to enable those countries to build their own domestic ethanol industries.

Petrobras said it doesn't plan to begin producing ethanol but will continue to distribute and export it.

The company currently plans to build the world's first ethanol-only pipelines from producing regions in central Brazil to the coast.

Source: Chron: Brazil Ethanol Exports to Rise Sharply .


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