Nuts from Jatropha Curcas contain an oil being used for biodiesel.
All around the world, countries and companies are investing big dollars in Jatropha Curcas as a source for biodiesel.
Update on Jatropha Curcas: the world’s interest in using this plant to produce biodiesel!
- United States: California: Allegro Biodiesel has commenced processing of jadtropha oil into biodiesel on a test basis.
- England, De-Ord Fuel opened a new 100,000 GPY biodiesel facility in Mansfield that will use jatropha and waste vegetable oil as feedstocks. The company will distribute fuel to bus and truck fleets. The $550,000 project is one of the first of a wave of micro-facilities that will utilize sustainable feedstocks in Europe.
- China’s largest state oil company, Sinopec, said it will invest $5 billion in Jatropha and plantations in Indonesia. The Chinese and Italian governments have initiated a feasibility study for Jatropha biodiesel at Sichuan Universtiy. The project received $650,000 in support from Italy. The project is the third signed by Italy and China, promising cooperation in biofuels research since mid-April. The others covered industrial waste oil-based biodiesel in Hubei Province, and thin-film solar cells in Shanghai.
- Integrated Biodiesel Industries said that it has acquired a 10 percent stake in Ireland’s South Cone Agriculture, a developer of Jatropha plantations. South Cone said that it would use the funds from the investment to develop plantations in Angola, Brazil and Argentina, and will initialize harvesting later this year in its first plantations. IBI, which will have a total production capacity of 135,000 tonnes by the end of 2008 from its plants in Argentina, said that it sought to develop alternative feedstocks to soy oil.
- In Myanmar, “Biofuel by Decree: Unmasking Burma’s bio-energy fiasco,” was released by the Ethnic Community Development Forum detailing the use of forced labor and land confiscation to plant 8 million acres with jatropha to provide a solution to Myanmar’s fuel crisis. The report, based on government documents, media reports, and 131 interviews conducted in Myanmar between November 2006 and April 2008. The report said that individuals “have been fined, beaten, and arrested for not participating.” The plan has been plagued with mismanagement by the army soldiers supervising the work. “The soldiers carry guns. They don’t know anything about agriculture,” said a farmer in the report. The first national Jatropha crops were ready for harvest this month, with up to 7 million acres planted by small farmers, after a national directive in 2006 that all farmers with more than 1 acre of land had to plant a minimum of 200 Jatropha seeds to establish a hedge around their landholdings. The ruling junta developed the plan in light of soaring oil import costs, and the biggest anti-junta protests since the 1980s which erupted last year over cuts in diesel subsidies.
- In the United Arab Emirates, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi announced an $15 billion investment project in renewables, managed by Masdar. Masdar’s major initiative in bio-fuels is focused on Jatropha and other arid climate crops.
- Archer Daniels Midland Company, Bayer Crop Science and Damiler to cooperate in Jatropha biodiesel project.
- In Zambia, the Omnia group will invest $3 million in jatropha research, saying that the imperative to develop alternative fuels is stronger in landlocked Zambia than neighboring South Africa, and said that the company hopes to understand as much as possible about RH nutrients required by Jatropha so that it can develop and sell better fertilizers if cultivation of jatropha continues to increase in Southern Africa.
- China Agro-Technology announced that it has secured $300 million in financing for biodiesel acquisitions and operations. The company is focused on building capacity to process jatropha oil to supply the growing demand for lower-cost biodiesel.
- Check out this site, Really great information on Jatropha, palm oil and other oils being used for biodiesel.: SeaQuest® News.
- Also for a complete scientific analysis of Jatropha Curcas, check out this site: Jatropha Curcas.
Some negative statements have been made about Jatropha Curcas being used as biodiesel or in biodiesel blends. Well, it seems from the above information, a lot of countries and companies have other thoughts. 7 million acres of Jatropha plantings is making a statement that Myanmar is serious about processing biodiesel from Jatropha. Unfortunately, there is only a certain amount of land where Jatropha can be grown in the U.S., Florida, maybe Texas and California. Freezing temperatures will kill the plant.
Check out Freeze Zones in the U.S. shows where Jatropha can be grown. Just a few areas in the 35-45°F temperature zones. If a freeze hardy version of Jatropha could be developed, then Jatropha might be grown in other areas in the U.S. Currently, farmers in Florida have started growing Jatropha plants. Farmers in Texas and Hawaii are looking at growing Jatropha.
Want to buy Jatropha seeds? Purchases can be made on Ebay.
Simply amazing, companies in the U.S. and all over the world are making strides in reducing oil use by growing and working with Jatropha plants. There are really committed people who want to make a difference and also want to make a buck. Can’t blame them. But where oh where is Our Do Nothing Congress?
The best Americans got from our do nothing Congress last week: Senator John Warner gave the speech about lowering the Speed Limit to 55 mph. Warner was co-sponsor with Senator John Liberman for the “Cap and Trade Bill” that was stopped from passage. This bill would have been a massive tax increase on U.S. citizens. Check out the CG earlier post: Cap and Trade Bill, Just Another Tax.
Biodiesel from nuts, a natural product being used to break the oil chain addiction.
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead